Last Update: 03/12/2009
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Acrylic Monomers

Acrylic monomers are part of the product range of the Functional Polymers division and are used among other things as starting materials in the production of polymer dispersions.

Admixture Systems

The concrete admixtures from the Admixture Systems business unit ensure optimal concrete characteristics, even under extreme conditions, for sky scrapers, complex bridge constructions and tunnels.

Audits for Environment, Health and Safety

Audits are a strategic tool for managing safety and environmental protection standards. During a site or plant audit, a profile is created using clearly defined environmental, safety or health criteria.

Automotive OEM Coatings

Coating systems for vehicle bodies that protect the vehicle from corrosion (cathodic dip) and gravel and chippings (primer), provide color (basecoat) and offer protection from environmental factors (topcoat).

Barrels of Oil Equivalent (BOE)

International standard for comparing the thermal energy of different fuels.

BASF Plant Science

Founded in 1998, the goal of the Research and Technology Verbund with over 700 employees is to create more efficient farming, renewable resources and better nutrition. Crop design and metanomics are units in this Verbund.


This term covers all processes and products that use living organisms, for example bacteria and yeasts, or their cellular constituents. Plant biotechnology and white biotechnology belong to the five growth clusters of BASF.

Carbon Disclosure Project

The Carbon Disclosure Project represents 385 institutional investors worldwide. The organization collects information on addressing the challenges of climate change and the strategies on climate change of the 1,550 largest corporations worldwide.

Clean Development Mechanism

The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) is one the flexible mechanisms for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions as laid down in the Kyoto Protocol. In CDM, companies from industrialized or transitional countries participate in emission reducing and quality examining projects in developing and transitional countries, and in doing so acquire tradable emission vouchers.

CMR Substances

Substances with carcinogenic (cancer causing), mutagenic (genetically altering) and reprotoxic (reproduction toxic) effects.

CO2 Equivalent

A parameter to describe the effect of greenhouse gas emissions. A factor known as the global warming potential (GWP) shows the effect of the individual gases compared with CO2 (reference value).

CO2 Scrubbing

CO2 scrubbing is another name for CO2 capture. After being compressed the captured, CO2 is transported and stored in underground repositories.


Compliance is an important element of corporate governance. It refers to the company’s behavior in accordance with laws, guidelines and voluntary codices.

Concrete Additives

Concrete additives accelerate or slow the hardening of concrete in order for it to be used optimally in warm and cold climates. The additives further increase the strength of concrete and thus add to the durability of construction work.

Corporate Governance

Corporate governance refers to the entire system of managing and overseeing a company. This includes the organization of a company, its principles and guidelines as well as all internal and external regulatory and monitoring mechanisms.

Dividend Yield

The dividend yield is the return received by a shareholder in the form of a dividend in relation to the year-end share price. It is calculated by dividing the per-share dividend by the year-end share price and multiplying by 100.

Earnings per Share

The amount earned by BASF in euros per share based on the weighted number of shares.


This is the margin that we earn on sales from our operating activities before depreciation and amortization. It is calculated as income from operations before depreciation and amortization as a percentage of sales.

EBIT after Cost of Capital

The EBIT after cost of capital is calculated by deducting the cost of capital from the operating income earned by BASF’s operating divisions. If the EBIT after cost of capital has a positive value BASF has earned a premium on the expected return of its providers of debt and equity. The EBIT after cost of capital is the key performance and management indicator. We use this key performance and management indicator for our operating divisions and business units to ensure that we meet the interest rate payments to providers of debt, satisfy the returns expected by providers of equity and cover tax expenses.

Eco-Efficiency Analysis

This analysis allows both economic and environmental aspects to be considered when developing and optimizing products and processes. The aim is to offer the best possible cost-effective products with good environmental performance.

Energy Management

The development of new materials and technologies to convert and store energy. Energy management also refers to the responsible use of fossil fuels, for example through the development of energy-saving materials such as insulation.

Epoxy Resin

Epoxy resin is a thermosetting plastic of high cohesiveness and chemical durability. Depending on temperature and amount of the hardener, the hardening of this plastic can take from a few minutes to up to several hours. A further characteristic is the high amount of cohesiveness compared to its low weight.


An Exploration and Production Sharing Agreement is the prevalent type of contract between a national oil company and an international oil company in the exploration and production of hydrocarbons.

European Water Partnership

The European Water Partnership was founded in 2006 as an independent non-profit organization to promote sustainable water management. It serves as a discussion forum, promotes partnerships as well as the exchange of information among relevant stakeholders, and initiates and coordinates initiatives.


To investigate and explore an area in the search for mineral resources such as crude oil or natural gas. For successful exploration, it is important to discover oil and gas-bearing structures (deposits, fields) using suitable geophysical processes at sea or on land rather than by means of expensive drilling.


Fermentation is a process in which renewable raw materials are reacted with the aid of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi or cell cultures.

Free Cash Flow

Cash provided by operating activities less payments related to property, plant and equipment and intangible assets.


An active ingredient that kills fungi or inhibits their growth (for example in plants).

Growth Cluster

BASF combines the important technology-driven issues of the future in five growth clusters: energy management, raw material change, nanotechnology, plant biotechnology and white biotechnology.


An active ingredient used to destroy weeds.


Technology to produce propylene oxide (PO) from hydrogen peroxide (HP). HPPO technology is more environmentally and economically viable than conventional PO methods of production, because no by-products are produced besides water. PO is an intermediate, for example, in the production of polyurethane.


International Accounting Standards (see also IFRS)


The International Financial Reporting Interpretations Committee is a committee that publishes proposed guidance on IFRS and IAS.


International Financial Reporting Standards (until 2001: International Accounting Standards, IAS) are developed and published by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB) headquartered in London, United Kingdom. In accordance with the IAS Regulations, IFRS are mandatory for listed companies headquartered in the European Union since 2005.


An active ingredient used to destroy harmful insects.

International Standard in Assurance Engagements 3000 (ISAE 3000)

ISAE 3000 is published by the International Audit and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB). It provides guidelines for comprehensive audits, which contain non-financial data, for example for the audits of sustainability reports.

ISO 14001

ISO 14001 is an international standard that determines the general requirements for an environmental management system for voluntary certification.

ISO 19011

ISO 19011 is an international standard that determines requirements for audits of quality management and environmental management systems.

Kyoto Protocol

The Kyoto Protocol is a supplement to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Control. Its main goal is to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases.

Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG)

LPG contains liquefied elements of natural gas (except for methane), e.g., propane, butane and propane-butane blends, are used as an alternative feedstock for cracker operations and for other chemical processes.

Materiality Matrix

The materiality matrix identifies and evaluates societal interest as well as the potential impact of sustainability topics for BASF. The aim is to develop strategies for addressing potential new risks and opportunities at an early stage. A detailed examination of stakeholder expectations forms the basis of this analysis.


Monitoring systems and tools serve to measure and ensure the adherence to standards. The objective of monitoring is, among other things, voluntary commitments such as the adherence to human rights and internationally recognized labor standards.


Megawatt hour: a measuring unit for energy.


The term nanotechnology applies to materials, structures and technologies with one thing in common: the creation or presence of at least one spatial dimension smaller than one hundred nanometer.


Liquid petroleum that is obtained as a by-product of oil refining. Heavy naphtha is the starting point for gasoline production. Light naphtha is the most important feedstock for steam crackers.


The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development is an international body headquartered in Paris, France.

OHSAS 18001

The Occupational Health and Safety Assessment Series (OHSAS) comprises, among other things, the standard OHSAS 18001 which includes a management system for occupational safety. This system can be integrated into an existing quality and environmental protection management system and certified accordingly.

Payout Ratio

The payout ratio shows what proportion of earnings is distributed in the form of a dividend. It is calculated by dividing the total dividend paid by net income and multiplying by 100.


BASF aims to optimally align business models with customer needs and the market situation. The company initiative "perspectives" supports the BASF business units through, among other things, specific coaching and the exchange of experiences in the areas of marketing and sales.


Photovoltaics convert sunlight directly into electricity via solar cells. Organic photovoltaics are solar cells made of organic materials.

Plant Biotechnology

An area of biotechnology in which methods of traditional cultivation are optimized using methods from molecular biology and biochemistry. Plants can be developed for more efficient agriculture, a healthier diet as well as for use as renewable resources.

Plant Health

The Plant Health concept involves crop protection products that increase crop yield and improve quality beyond just disease and insect control.

Product Innovations

New or improved products and applications, which have been on the market for less than five years.

Raw Material Change

Analysis and evaluation of processes to use natural gas, coal and renewable raw materials for chemical value-adding chains.


An E.U. regulatory framework for the registration, evaluation and authorization of chemicals.

Responsible Care®

A worldwide initiative by the chemical industry to continuously improve its performance in the fields of environmental protection, health and safety.


There are two applications for generated profits: distribution to shareholders or continuance in the company. The latter is refered to as retention.

Return on Assets

This describes the return we make on the average assets employed during the year. It is calculated as income from ordinary activities plus interest expenses as a percentage of average assets.

Return on Equity after Tax

This describes the return we make on the average equity used during a fiscal year. It is calculated as income before minority interests as a percentage of average equity.

SCR Catalysts

SCR (Selective Catalytic Reduction) is one of BASF’s many solutions to meet the increasing demand of emission technologies which have arisen due the increasingly stricter regulations of diesel vehicles. The SCR catalysts are comprised of ceramic combs with an active catalyst component.

Seed Treatment Products

These are crop protection products applied with specific technologies directly on the seed and thus protect crops in the emerging stages against diseases and harmful insects.

Special Items

One-time charges or one-time income that significantly affect the earnings of a segment or the BASF Group. Special items include, for example, charges arising from restructuring measures and severance payments.

Spot Market

A market where an agreed deal including delivery, acceptance and payment occurs immediately. In contrast to forward contracts where the delivery, acceptance and payment occurs at point in time after the conclusion of the deal.


The term refers to persons or groups whose interests are interlinked with those of a company in a variety of ways. BASF’s stakeholders include shareholders, business partners, employees, neighbors and society, and the environment.


A plant in which steam is used to “crack” naphtha (petroleum) or natural gas. The resulting petrochemicals – above all, ethylene and propylene – are the starting materials used to manufacture most of BASF’s products.


The production of the primary product styrene is primarily for captive use (backward integration). Styrenics are used in many fields, including the construction, packaging, automotive, electric and leisure industries.

Substances and Products

BASF sells a wide range of products from its own production as well as merchandise. Products can be made of a single substance or a mixture of different substances.


The objective of sustainable development is to meet the economic, environmental and social needs of society without harming the development opportunities of future generations.


An agreement between two parties to exchange payment flows in the future. In an interest swap, a fixed (variable) interest rate is exchanged for a floating (fixed) rate for an agreed nominal amount.

Technology Platforms

Our four global technology platforms – Polymer Research, Specialty Chemicals Research, Chemicals Research & Engineering and Plant Biotechnology Research – form the heart of our Know-how Verbund.

Tetrahydrofuran (THF)

Tetrahydrofuran is a starting compound for Polytetrahydrofuran (PolyTHF®), a component for the production of elastic fibers.

Training Verbund

The Training Verbund is a cooperation between BASF and small to mid-size companies. The goal is to secure additional apprenticehips with partner companies in the Rhine Neckar Region.

U.N. Millennium Development Goals

In 2000, the member states of the United Nations adopted eight global development goals. The goals are measured by means of indicators and are to be reached by 2015. These include the fight against extreme poverty and hunger, the reduction of child mortality and environmental sustainability.


The Verbund is one of BASF’s greatest strengths: At our major sites, we link our production plants in a sophisticated system along our value-adding chains. We thus save energy and raw materials, reduce logistics costs and use infrastructure facilities jointly.

Value-adding Chain

Successive steps in a production process, from the raw materials through various intermediate steps to the finished product.

White Biotechnology

An area of biotechnology that uses microorganisms and/or enzymes to produce chemical products, utilized in many levels of the value-adding chain in the chemical industry. This involves, for example, the biotechnological production of enzymes and chirale intermediates.


WINGAS GmbH & Co.KG is a joint venture company with our Russian partner Gazprom. At the end of 2008, BASF held 50% plus one share of WINGAS through its 100% subsidiary Wintershall Holding AG. WINGAS is an European company active in natural gas trading, storage and distribution. Its customers include regional and communal gas suppliers, industrial companies and power plant operators.

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