When Hans Demant founded Oticon in 1904, it was for a good reason: his wife was hearing impaired, and he was determined to help her and others like her. From personal experience, Hans Demant knew about the effects of hearing impairment - the complex psychological problems which inevitably arise when people have difficulty communicating.
Inspired by Hans' humanistic philosophy, his son William and his wife created William Demants og Hustru Ida Emilies Fond in 1957. The Foundation is later also known as the Oticon Foundation. Today the Oticon Foundation wholly owns the investment company William Demant Invest.
In addition to William Demant Holding, William Demant Invest holds significant positions in the medtech companies Össur hf. and Vitrolife AB, as well as the real estate company Jeudan A/S and the wind farm Borkum Riffgrund 1 in the North Sea off the German coast. Össur is listed in Iceland and Copenhagen, Vitrolife in Stockholm and Jeudan in Copenhagen. The owners of Borkum Riffgrund 1 are William Demant Invest, KIRKBI and DONG Energy.
The Oticon Foundation's statutes mandate that income be used to support the needs of hearing-impaired individuals as well as organizations. Income is derived through its operational activities in William Demant Invest.
Having a long history, the Oticon Foundation sponsors social and educational programs, publications, conferences, cultural activities and campaigns - both for researchers, hearing-care professionals and the general public.