Global board diversity: traditional thinking holding back progress

While there has been more debate about achieving more diversity on company boards, the Global Board of Directors survey 2016 has found that despite the intense investor and media scrutiny – public company directors are no more diverse that the private companies whose directors participated in the survey.… Read the rest

UK MPs launch corporate governance inquiry

The  House of Commons’ Business, Innovation, and Skills (BIS) Committee has launched an inquiry on corporate governance, focussing on executive pay, directors duties, and the composition of boardrooms, including worker representation and gender balance in executive positions.

This follows the committee’s inquiries into the corporate collapse of  retailer, BHS, and the working practices at Sports Direct and the announcement by Theresa May that the government will be consulting on corporate governance issues this autumn – including her proposals on executive pay and employee representation on company boards.… Read the rest

Company boards should examine bonus pay structures CIMA suggests

The UK has the second-least meritocratic bonus system in the world, according to a global poll of 6,500 financial decision makers carried out by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA). The organisation is calling for bonus systems to be designed to encourage long-term success rather than only short-term performance.… Read the rest

TUC criticises UK pay gap

The TUC has claimed that it took the the UK’s highest paid chief executive (CEO), Martin Sorrell, less than 45 minutes to earn what an average UK worker earns over an entire year, following its analysis published at its annual congress held this week.… Read the rest

Sports Direct takes action to respond to criticisms of working practices and corporate governance

Major institutional investors were among those criticising retailer Sports Direct at its AGM this week and showed their disquiet about the company through their votes. The majority of independent shareholders voted against the re-election of the chairman Keith Hellawell and in favour of a shareholder resolution put forward by the Trade Union Share Owners (TUSO) group and Islington Council calling for an independent investigation into how the company treats its workers.… Read the rest

UK government to consult on PM’s corporate governance pledges

Prime Minister Theresa May, speaking at the end of her first G20 summit held in Hangzhou, China, pledged to bring forward a consultation paper this autumn suggesting reforms to corporate governance at UK companies.

This indicates that May will be taking action on issues she first raised at the start of her campaign to stand as  Conservative Party leader and which she believes fit with her pledge as Prime Minister to govern in a way that benefits everyone and gives them a share of economic improvements and increased prosperity.… Read the rest

ShareAction calls for institutional investors to do more to address UK poverty

Institutional investors must do more to reduce in-work poverty and improve the quality of work in the UK’s private sector, according to a report published by ShareAction.  The report evaluates the potential of investor-led strategies to address inequality and protect the economic interests of low paid beneficiaries.
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PRI launches guide for institutional investors to integrate ESG strategies

The United Nations-led PRI (Principles for Responsible Investment) has published a guide which it said is the most comprehensive description to date of what ESG (environmental, social and governance) -integrated analysis is, and which explains how it works in practice.

The guide contains information and case studies on integration techniques that apply to investment strategies including fundamental, quantitative, smart beta and passive investment.… Read the rest

Institute of Directors ranks FTSE100 companies on their corporate governance performance

British American Tobacco has topped a ranking by the UK’s Institute of Directors (IoD) of FTSE100 companies by their corporate governance performance. The other companies in the top five are Unilever, Diageo, Sage Group and Next.

The 2016 Good Governance Report  measured the companies using a list of objectives, measurable factors drawn from public sources and by conducting a survey of stakeholders’ perceptions of corporate governance to produce a final score.… Read the rest

New Zealand stock exchange requests comments on amended corporate governance code

NZX, the New Zealand stock exchange, has published a draft revised corporate governance code (NZX Code) and feedback to its earlier consultation on the changes required. This is the  first substantial update to the NZX Code since 2003.

The key changes to the code relate to environmental, social and governance (ESG) reporting, diversity reporting and executive remuneration disclosures.… Read the rest

Vietnam develops corporate governance code

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group and the State Securities Commission of Vietnam (SSC) are working together to develop a corporate governance code for its listed companies. The IFC believes that the development of code will help Vietnamese companies attract more capital and make them more competitive in an environment of increasing regional economic integration.… Read the rest

ShareSoc urges a vote against excessive pay at housebuilder Berkeley

Tony Pidgley CBE Chairman of Berkeley

Tony Pidgley CBE
Chairman of Berkeley

ShareSoc, which represents individual shareholders in the UK, is advising its members to vote against the remuneration report of house builder Berkeley Group at its AGM on 6th September.

Tony Pidgley, co-founder and executive chairman, of Berkeley, received £21m in the financial year ending 2016 and £23m in the previous year.… Read the rest