Flix issues ESG report
Flix, the company behind FlixBus, has issued its first ever ESG report, a voluntary report on its environmental, social and governance impacts.
André Schwämmlein, CEO and Co-Founder of Flix, said: “We are proud to announce that today we are releasing our first voluntary ESG report, which we are confident will help us enforce our vision of sustainable and affordable travel with a new awareness and a revived consciousness, while kicking off a process for progressive improvement through recurring reporting and a set of well-defined ESG KPIs and measures.
“A company should always keep sight of the values that shape its vision and focus on the impact its business has on the community. Accordingly, we want to make sure that we create value for the communities we serve, and we are ready to address our strengths as well as whatever shortcomings may come up. With growth comes responsibility. We are ready to take it.”
Four pillars form the backbone of its ESG strategy: People, Planet, Mobility and Governance.
Flix is aiming to offer carbon neutral travel by 2040 in Europe, decarbonizing its business even ahead of the timeline set by the EU. Globally, the company plans to define a timeline for carbon neutrality within the next two years. The global goal will also be determined by the evolving regulatory framework and the further development of alternative drives, in which Flix is also actively taking part.
In 2023, it publicly committed to establishing near-term science-based emission reduction targets, putting in place a four-principle climate strategy, focused on avoiding, reducing, and offsetting CO2 emissions.
Flix claims its fleet has allowed passengers to avoid more than 800,000 tonnes of CO2 in 2022 alone just by choosing its services over other options such as cars or planes. In Europe, FlixBus emits 26g of CO2 per passenger per km. According to the German Environmental Agency (UBA), this equals to approximately 16% of the CO2 emissions of a car trip on the same route (with more than 80% CO2 emissions being saved) and approximately 12% of the CO2 emissions of a flight on the same itinerary (with nearly 90% CO2 emissions being saved).
Flix is constantly looking into alternative drives and fuels to reduce its carbon footprint via progressive Fleet Transformation. Although it acknowledges that a final technology for carbon neutral long-distance bus operations is not yet available, the company takes a diversified approach and has been testing five alternative fuel and drive technologies with more than ten pilots in Europe and US in the past few years, namely battery electric buses, Bio-CNG and Bio-LNG, biodiesel and solar panels. Flix also plans to launch Europe’s first hydrogen-powered long-distance coach in 2024, in partnership with Freudenberg Sealing Technologies and ZF Friedrichshafen AG, and electric coaches in four years with Daimler Buses.
Flix’s first bio-LNG reference fleet will begin at the end of 2023 with the goal of scaling up to 50 Flix coaches with Bio-LNG technology within two years.
Flix ensures the safety of its passengers, crews and employees via a thorough Safety Management System that encompasses more than 60 initiatives. Fostering Diversity & Inclusion with a Global Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Policy, while making available a Global Whistleblowing Policy for people to report any possible violation to it, also comes as a priority, in line with the notion of plurality as a catalyst for value creation. These areas also include Employee Engagement and Development, with an employee listening strategy rolled out across five different channels to monitor and assess employees’ feedback.
Flix sees mobility as a fundamental right. With this notion in mind, the company has been serving a growing number of destinations by building Europe’s widest long-distance bus network under the FlixBus brand, then launching its FlixTrain service.
By continuously expanding its global network, also in remote areas where FlixBus is often the sole means of collective transportation, Flix believes it can play a major role in safeguarding people’s freedom of movement.
At the same time, Flix looks at Innovation and Customer Satisfaction as key targets to accomplish and strives towards Sustainable Value Creation as a major goal to ensure its long-term stability and sustainable growth. This entails investing in infrastructure, network expansions and intermodal forms of transport, on top of encouraging research and development of alternative drives and fuels while piloting those that seem to be more promising at the present stage.
Within the framework of Flix’s ESG strategy, strong Governance acts as an underlying pillar to those of Planet, People and Mobility and a prerequisite for all actions pursued across every business area.
This implies strict adherence to national, international, state and local laws and enforcement of solid corporate ethical standards to generate long-term value, with a growing number of measures taken in this respect. Among other things, Flix’s Global Compliance Management System includes a Global Code of Conduct for employees and one for Business Partners, various policies, a Whistleblowing program and a new Data Protection Management System (DMS) implemented in 2022. At the level of ESG governance, a Flix Sustainability Steering Committee, formed by all members of the Management Board, acts as the oversight body on ESG strategy, ESG risks and performance, and is tasked with setting the ESG agenda and goals for the Flix Group