Michael Zahn, CEO of Deutsche Wohnen SE, explains the decision as follows, “Our shared history creates a link between the company and Berlin. Immediately after Greater Berlin was established, GEHAG started in 1924 with its pioneering housing in the style of classical Berlin Modernism. These fantastic residential estates, which in the meantime are listed as UNESCO world heritage sites, are still owned by us today. We want to continue to provide new housing and affordable flats for the middle classes in Berlin. With this change of registered address, we are underlining our willingness to cooperate and to engage in constructive dialogue with this city.”
In 2007, the Berlin-based, charitable housing company GEHAG [Gemeinnützige Heimstätten-, Spar- und Bau-Aktiengesellschaft] merged with the Frankfurt-based Deutsche Wohnen AG. With its takeover of GSW Immobilien AG in 2013, the company grew once again in Berlin. Deutsche Wohnen feels it has a particular responsibility in this city to invest in the modernisation and maintenance of its holdings. This includes the energy-efficient refurbishment of its properties with heating, hot water and energy concepts to reduce energy consumption and CO2 emissions. Moreover, the use of sustainable and durable building materials has a positive impact both on the environment and housing quality.
Furthermore, Deutsche Wohnen is an attractive employer, particularly in the Berlin metropolitan area. Its total of 948 employees form a strong link between the company and its tenants and, in so doing, provide the foundation for the company’s successful work. Deutsche Wohnen’s performance in strategic personnel development was acknowledged in 2016 with the award of “Fair Company” certification. Employees are trained in-house and so are given the opportunity to continue their personal development with the help of a variety of education and training programmes. At the moment, 44 trainees and three bachelor students are benefitting from the company’s training. In 2016, the company’s efforts in this field earned it the seal of approval for “Excellent Training Quality” of the Berlin Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Deutsche Wohnen is one of the leading publicly listed property companies in Germany and Europe with a business focus on managing and developing its portfolio, which consists mainly of residential properties. As at 30 June 2017, the portfolio comprised 163,000 units in total, of which 160,600 were residential and 2,400 commercial. The company is listed in the Deutsche Börse’s MDAX and is also included in the leading indices EPRA/NAREIT, STOXX® Europe 600 and GPR 250.