Josef Wagner set up two foundations - one in Germany (1972) and the second in Switzerland (1975) - to guarantee the company's continuity according to his vision. He then transferred all his shares, as the founder of the company, to these two Foundations and appointed an independent five-person foundation board or council at each location to administer the income. He also bequeathed his own personal assets to the Foundations. Today, the Josef-Wagner Foundations are the joint owners of Wagner International AG, Altstätten, the holding company for all operational units within the WAGNER group.
The task of these two Josef-Wagner Foundations is to maintain and develop the WAGNER group, as well as providing charitable services in the regions of Germany and Switzerland in which WAGNER operates production sites. The Foundations pursue "exclusively and directly non-profitable and charitable aims":
- Supporting individuals and families in situations of need
- Supporting the maintenance of nurseries, residential, retirement and nursing homes.
- Supporting talented students and apprentices, preferably in technical-natural sciences.
- Making donations to charitable institutions pursuing similar goals to those of the Foundations.
The Josef Wagner Foundation in Friedrichshafen/Germany
Since the start of its charitable activities, the German Josef-Wagner Foundation has allocated around 6 million euros to Foundation projects. A significant proportion of this sum is donated to nurseries in the Lake Constance area, to help fund expansions and renovations, as well as setting up child day-care facilities and crèches. It supports disadvantaged families and individuals in the Lake Constance area with one-off contributions or regular donations. It supports talented students, recommended by their lecturers, in the form of financial support for their studies.
The administrative staff of the Josef-Wagner Foundation in Friedrichshafen work in the company founder's former residence, which also serves as a venue for events and temporary accommodation for new employees. The building reflects Josef Wagner's innovative flair, enthusiasm for new technologies and emphasis on quality. Influenced by Andrew Lloyd Wright's organic architecture, it is a typical example of the industrial architectural style of the 1960s. Following careful restoration in 2011, this country house became the most recently constructed building to be awarded the Baden-Württemberg Denkmalschutzpreis (award for the protection of historic buildings).
The Foundation's assets and the provision of services are administered by a five-person Foundation Board, which currently consists of the following members:
- Dr. Jörg Sauer
- Jürgen Winterhalter
- Barbara Hosak
- Hubert Riek, Chairman of the German Josef-Wagner Foundation, formerly CEO of the J. Wagner GmbH
- Dr. Markus Dörig
The Josef Wagner Foundation in Altstätten/Switzerland
The Swiss Josef-Wagner foundation focuses primarily on care and welfare activities aimed at young people. In partnership with the "Logopädische Vereinigung Oberrheintal" (Oberrheintal logopaedic association), it runs a speech therapy clinic attended by several hundred children until state agencies take over this care. It has funded the establishment, staffing and non-material costs of a children's day-care facility. The "Bild" children's home now runs an after-school group, the costs of which are funded by the Foundation. Like its German counterpart, the Swiss Foundation also supports families and individuals in situations of need. To date, the Swiss Josef-Wagner Foundation has donated a total sum of around seven million Swiss francs.
The Foundation's assets and provision of services are administered by a five-person Foundation Council, which currently consists of the following members:
- Dr. Jörg Sauer
- Jürgen Winterhalter, President
- Esther Rohner-Bachmann
- Hubert Riek
- Dr. Markus Dörig