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  • 2018 Corporate Responsibility Report

Cultural and sports sponsorship

Culture and sports are a source of pleasure and inspiration for society. They create a sense of community and help us come together with others from different cultural and political backgrounds. As an international business, we believe that sponsoring cultural activities and sports is part of our corporate social responsibility.

How we promote culture and sport

We are one of the leading sponsors of culture and sports in Germany, and our national companies are also engaged in this cause. In addition to providing funding, we help artists, athletes, event organizers and associations with their communication and marketing activities. Being involved in the regions where we are based is another important aspect.

Music sponsorship is a long-standing tradition at Deutsche Telekom and a key part of our company’s brand communication activities. It is our goal to facilitate access to cultural events and give people an outlet to share their thoughts and ideas. Our main sponsorship focus is placed on events such as the Beethovenfest and the International Telekom Beethoven Competition in Bonn, which has acted as a springboard for young pianists from all over the world for the past 14 years.

We are a partner of Junges Theater Bonn and sponsor a number of projects, including a media education school project aimed at encouraging children at elementary school to learn about new media through fun and creative activities.

As part of our sport sponsorship activities, we promote both competitive and recreational sports. Our main focus is on soccer partnerships with DFB (the German Football Association), FC Bayern Munich, and other major German league soccer teams. As a Bonn-based Group, we also devote particular effort to supporting the Telekom Baskets Bonn. We also assist athletes through Deutsche Sporthilfe (a German sports aid foundation), the DFB’s Sepp Herberger Foundation, and the National Paralympic Committee Germany. In 2018, we extended our collaboration with the latter by another two years.

Furthermore, we focus in particular on the aspects of sport that foster a sense of community. Our efforts revolve around recreational sports, school sporting activities, and athletes with disabilities. Our partnership with Deutsche Sporthilfe will continue until at least 2020 and will center on Paralympic sponsorship and athlete career transition – in other words preparing athletes to embark on a new career on leaving their sport.

Sparking a passion for sport with the Telekom Baskets

We take responsibility for our immediate social environment, which is why we sponsor the Telekom Baskets in Bonn. As part of our “Tix for Kids” ticket campaign, for example, we raffle off two school group ticket sets (2 x 30) for every home game among schools in Bonn, all of which are eligible to participate in the raffle.

Baskets@school student training project
Deutsche Telekom’s Baskets@school initiative gives students in fifth through to tenth grade the chance to meet their sporting idols at school. In a training session lasting around 90 minutes, children and young people experience professional basketball training, with the pros on the Telekom Baskets team teaching them the tricks of the trade. The participants also receive their own Baskets@school T-shirt and three Baskets-branded balls per class. School classes were able to apply for two training sessions on November 30 and December 6. The project strengthens team spirit and teaches students from the region more about basketball.

A particular highlight during the season was when the Baskets visited Tannenbusch Gymnasium (a secondary school) in Bonn in November 2018. Classified as an elite sporting school by the German Olympic Sports Confederation, Tannenbusch Gymnasium helps young athletes strike a balance between competitive sport and schooling. Under the slogan “Baskets against blades”, the school’s young fencers and the professional basketball players spent two hours showing off their sporting abilities to each other. First the schoolchildren, clad head to toe in fencing attire, demonstrated their foil, épée and sabre techniques to the team, then the Baskets put on a display of their dribbling, passing and throwing skills.

Baskets Primary School Challenge
In 2018, we teamed up with the Telekom Baskets to continued the Baskets Primary School Challenge in collaboration with the City of Bonn. This training project is aimed at encouraging second and third graders to take an interest in exercise and nurturing their sporting ambitions. The students are given the opportunity to train with Telekom Baskets players – and then go head to head in a challenge against other primary schools. What’s more, Deutsche Telekom provides a free box with training equipment that the schools can keep after the project has finished. The first training session in 2018 was also attended by Ashok Sridharan, the Mayor of Bonn. Primary school classes from Bonn and surrounding areas interested in taking part can register online. In 2018, the number of participating schools rose to 31, compared to 21 in the previous year.

Stepping into the unknown broadens horizons – trying something new in sport

Working in partnership with the National Paralympic Committee Germany, the DFB’s Sepp Herberger Foundation and Deutsche Sporthilfe, we run the “Experiencing new sports” support project, which allows young people to step out of their comfort zone and try their hand at a new sport. Fostering team spirit and allaying initial fears are key elements of the project.

With this in mind, the project gives young people the opportunity, among other things, to discover what life is like for people with an impairment. Different disabled sport training sessions are designed to promote mutual respect, tolerance, a willingness to help, and empathy for people living with a disability. The “Blind soccer” training session allows teams of players aged 12 and over to learn specific techniques involved in blind soccer. In 2018, two disciplines, parkour and wheelchair basketball, were added to the “Experiencing new sports” project. In “Parkour meets school”, students can have a go at this high-speed activity – which involves integrating walls, stairs and roofs into movement sequences, and using them for tricks – and, in doing so, discover that physical strength and agility go hand in hand with courage and team spirit. Parkour also stimulates creativity and body awareness. As for wheelchair basketball, sporting associations can experience this parasport first hand in their sports hall in up to three consecutive one-and-a-half-hour sessions, which are led by experienced professional coaches and players from the Köln 99ers basketball club.

Given that sport, too, is becoming increasingly digital, the “Experiencing new sports” project collaborated with FJMK, North Rhine-Westphalia’s specialist agency for youth media culture, to launch a pilot gaming/eSport event in 2018 for parents and schoolchildren. During the event, held at Erzbischöfliches Irmgardis-Gymnasium in Cologne, students in grades five to seven and their parents attended workshops led by experienced specialists to learn about eSport and responsible gaming.

Sport Is Good Campaign in Romania

In 2018, Telekom Romania continued to support the Romanian National Football Team as its main sponsor. This initiative is in line with Telekom’s strategic commercial direction of offering customers top sports content and experiences, and it reflects the Deutsche Telekom International sponsorship strategy.

Another project exerting a major impact on the community is the Telekom Skating Arena operated by the Ion Tiriac Foundation. The company supported the establishment of the only existing rink in the Bucharest Ilfov district at the current time with the aim of encouraging sport among children, young people, and support for sports teams.

In January, the company supported the 8th edition of the Gerar Half Marathon organized at the campus of The Polytechnic University. The project is intended to promote outdoor running in any weather. Approximately 700 runners took part in the two categories of cross-country (10 km) and the half marathon (21 km). Telekom Romania’s employees had an opportunity to participate as runners, or as volunteers in the organizing team for the event.

The “Biggest Sports Hour” 2018
During June and August 2018, Telekom Romania in partnership with SmartAtletic organized the eighth edition of the sports event “The Biggest Sports Hour” in Ploiesti, Brasov and Iasi.

Telekom Romania launched a national survey on “Romanians’ Attitudes and Behaviors related to Sport”, in order to find out about the preferences of Romanian citizens in relation to sports, developments since the “Sport is Good” campaign was started, and identify the number of people choosing to adopt a healthy lifestyle.

  • The study entitled “Romanians’ Attitudes and Behaviors relating to Sport”, was conducted by Quantix Marketing Consulting for Telekom Romania. According to the study, 83% of Romanians would like to do more sport than is currently the case. The main barriers to this aspiration are pressures on time and work commitments;
  • Telekom Romania is the telecommunications company perceived as the most involved in supporting sports in Romania in elite and amateur competitions;
  • “Sport is Good” is a campaign promoting sport and a healthy lifestyle powered by Telekom Sport. It attracts the highest number of participants in amateur sports events.

The event was attended by more than 56,000 outdoor sports and health enthusiasts and their supporters. It was coordinated by 134 national and international instructors.

In addition to the new locations of Ploiesti and Iasi, this year's edition brought new classes and sports, including Les Mills Body Pump, Functional Training, Les Mills Grit, Fight Klub Khai Bo, Kangoo Jumps marathon, Basketball, and Capoeira.

BTL Medical Equipment Romania provided medical tests, recovery and esthetics sessions at the event for more than 1,500 people and Red Cross Romania provided 146 first aid courses.

RON 12,590 were collected in aid of the social cause being supported by this year's edition of the festival. The amount represents the donations made through the Galantom platform, the donations made at the three events and the participation fees from the UpDown Run Cross organized within the program of activities in Brașov. More than 250 people including 30 Telekom employees ran to support the cause of Elena Bunea, the only Romanian patient alive with Berdon Syndrome. The Telekom Romania Foundation is topping up this sum by donating an amount up to RON 25,000 for the intestinal transplant operation that can be carried out at a specialized medical center in Birmingham, United Kingdom.

Committed to culture – supporting young artists from Eastern Europe

Art Collection Telekom was launched in 2010 and focuses on contemporary art from Eastern and South-Eastern Europe. The collection aims to promote a broader understanding of Europe’s cultural diversity. Contemporary art should be seen, experienced, and discussed. That’s why it is very important for Art Collection Telekom to make the collection accessible to a broad audience and regularly show it in new contexts. Deutsche Telekom has been working with institutional and private partners to hold international exhibitions since 2014.

One of the highlights of 2018 was the “I AM THE MOUTH” exhibition, which ran from January 19 through March 18 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Zagreb (MSU) and included several pieces from Art Collection Telekom. Visitors to the 52nd ART COLOGNE fair were also able to experience a virtual tour of “I AM THE MOUTH”. Deutsche Telekom presented the “Art Cologne Award for New Positions” to young artists for the fifth time at the fair. This year, the award went to Lito Kattou from Cyprus, whose sculptures, installations, and performances take space and time as their subjects. Art Collection Telekom launched its own art format in Bonn, the “Young Art Lovers”, to run in parallel with ART COLOGNE. This is an artistic journey through Deutsche Telekom headquarters that gives young people an exclusive look at the company’s own art collection. The Polish artist Iza Tarasewicz opened the event by presenting her expansive art installation “ONCE INFORMATION HAS PASSED INTO PROTEIN” in person.

Videos by Art Collection Telekom were the focus of the exhibition “Temporary Structures 4”, which opened in Ostrava, Czech Republic, in November 2018. Pieces from the collection were also shown at the 2018 viennacontemporary art fair.

Unique concert experiences – Beethovenfest and Jazzfest

In 2018, we returned as the main sponsor of Beethovenfest in Bonn and funded two inspiring evening concerts in September. The pianist Alberto Ferro honored Claude Debussy’s memory with a recital entitled “Pour le piano – Debussy zu Ehren” (“For the piano – in honor of Debussy”). Fans of experimental classical music also got their money’s worth – the Music:Eyes ensemble transformed the music of Ludwig van Beethoven into an audiovisual sound experience. The concert was organized by eight students from five secondary schools in Bonn. They are the protagonists of this year’s “Beethovenfest student manager” initiative, which Deutsche Telekom has been supporting for the past eight years. Every year, the team of students spends several months organizing, financing, and promoting the concert.

During the period under review, we called on pianists to enter the International Telekom Beethoven Competition, which has been held every other year since 2005. This allows us to sponsor young professional pianists and offer them an international platform. One of the main things we expect from applicants is that they bring their own interpretations and ideas to their performance. The competition will take place from December 6 through 14, 2019, in Bonn.

We also returned as the main sponsor of Jazzfest Bonn in April 2018. As such, we presented a double concert at the sold-out Telekom Forum on April 27, where gripping performances by Brazilian multi-instrumentalist and soul jazz singer, Ed Motta, and the legendary British acid jazz group, Incognito, wowed an audience of approximately 1,200.

OTE Group Telecommunications Museum: Champion Museum for 2018 in Greece

The OTE Group Telecommunications Museum was selected as the Honored Museum for 2018 in Greece by the Hellenic Committee of the International Council of Museums (ICOM) on the occasion of the International Museum Day on 18 May. Under the slogan for this year's International Day "Hyperconnected Museums: New Approaches, New Publics", the Telecommunications Museum has scheduled a series of events and educational programs for children, families, and the elderly hosted at the museum's renovated premises. Visitors to the museum use new augmented and virtual reality tools integrated in the renovated Permanent Exhibition Hall of the museum to interact with the museum’s collections and gain a unique and positive experience to share after their encounter. The Telecommunications Museum provides informal education, implements educational programs, and organizes events that reflect its outreach policy and dynamic relationship with society.

Lots of theater for young people – our partnership with Junges Theater Bonn

Since 2004, we’ve maintained a successful partnership with Junges Theater Bonn (JTB), Germany’s most popular theater for children and young people. Like JTB, we believe theater can make a valuable contribution to the development and education of young people, especially in the age of the internet and smartphones. To allow as many children and young people as possible to visit the theater, regardless of where they come from or their social background, we’re offering the “Deutsche Telekom five-euro ticket” in collaboration with JTB, a discounted ticket category for children, young people, and families. On top of that, we also fund around 700 “Deutsche Telekom Sozialtickets” every year for children in school or kindergarten whose parents cannot afford to visit the theater due to their economic circumstances.

We’ve also been running a media education project with JTB since 2015, the aim of which is to teach children to use the internet, smartphones, and social media responsibly. The project centers on working with young schoolchildren to stage an original play. In it, the children demonstrate how they experience the web, and what opportunities and risks come with being so interconnected – both for the individual and society as a whole. This day-long project is offered every year to fourth-graders from Bonn and the surrounding areas. Drama teachers are there to help the children combine the short scenes they have developed into a full play. We plan to continue working with JTB till at least 2020.