Swelling pension pots for UK directors

The average executive at one of the UK’s top 102 companies can retire at 60 on a final salary pension worth over £3m – enough to provide, at a pension of £193,000 a year, more than 25 times the average occupational pension, research by the TUC has revealed.… Read the rest

Photo-Me chair bows to activist pressure

Vernon Sankey has stepped down as chairman of Photo-Me International with immediate effect, prompting the photo booth operator’s principal shareholders to withdraw an EGM requisition seeking his removal.

 

Cycladic Capital and Principle Capital were seeking the immediate removal of both Sankey and the company’s chief executive, Serge Crasnianski.… Read the rest

Aer Lingus rejects Ryanair EGM call

Aer Lingus has rejected an EGM requisition request from Ryanair, stating that the aim of the meeting request was to “interfere with and frustrate the commercial and operational performance of Ryanair’s most resilient competitor”.

Earlier this month Ryanair made a second call for an EGM at which shareholders would consider asking Aer Lingus’ board and management to maintain four daily flights between Shannon and Heathrow.… Read the rest

Academic Roundup

Hedge fund investor activism and takeovers
Robin Greenwood and Michael Schor, Harvard University

Hedge fund activism has limited scope to bring about far-reaching effects on corporate governance, this paper has found. The authors examined long-term stock returns around hedge fund activism, and find hedge funds are better suited to identifying undervalued targets and prompting a takeover than engaging on long-term corporate governance issues.… Read the rest

Australian CEOs driving the governance agenda

Chief executives are more important in driving governance change at their companies than either chairmen or directors, a survey by the Australian Institute of Management (AIM) has found. Of those surveyed, 83% said chief executives are highly or very highly involved in championing corporate governance change.… Read the rest

Australian governance “fit and well”

Corporate governance among Australian companies appears fit and well, is professionally administered and – despite frequently expressed concerns to the contrary – is not overly costly, a report conducted by the University of Technology Centre for Corporate Governance has found.

The report – which surveyed a sample of 67 companies – described the standard of governance in Australia as “very high”, with evidence of intelligent engagement and professionalism being found across all sectors of Australian business, from the ASX 100 to smaller caps and unlisted companies.… Read the rest

Executive opportunities declining

The number of executive directors at the UK’s top companies has been declining for five years in a row, with a report from Deloitte showing the number of such positions has fallen by 20% over this period.

The report found almost 360 executive roles at FTSE 350 companies have disappeared in the last five years.… Read the rest

Ryanair calls for Aer Lingus EGM

Ryanair has written to Aer Lingus to request an EGM so that shareholders can consider asking the airline’s board and management to maintain four daily flights between Shannon and Heathrow. Aer Lingus is planning to transfer its London flights from Shannon to Belfast.… Read the rest

Academic Roundup – October 2007

Manifest-I presents a summary of recently released academic papers on international corporate governance and corporate social responsibility issues.

Hedge fund investor activism and takeovers
Robin Greenwood and Michael Schor, Harvard University

Hedge fund activism has limited scope to bring about far-reaching effects on corporate governance, this paper has found.… Read the rest

24 deleted from FTSE4Good index amid controversy over Smithfield Foods

The latest review of the FTSE4Good index has seen 24 companies expelled for no longer meeting its corporate responsibility standards. These include Honda and Toyota, which failed to meet human rights criteria, and Alltel and Capital One Financial, did not meet environmental standards.… Read the rest

Black managers overtake white in South Africa

Black representation in South African business has progressed much further than is generally accepted, with black representation at top management level growing by 55.9% from 2001-2006, a report by union body Solidarity has argued.

According to the report – The Truth About Affirmative Action in South Africa – this growth in black representation at top management level has been accompanied by a 22% decline in white male representation.… Read the rest

Women enjoying rapid promotion, but pay continues to lag

While women are enjoying faster career progression than their male colleagues, this is not being matched by their remuneration, and there is evidence efforts to redress the pay gap are beginning to stall, a survey by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) and Remuneration Economics has found.… Read the rest