Investment Association begins official corporate governance duty

Corporate_governanceThe Investment Association (IA) has written to FTSE All-Share companies to offer them a chance to explain what they have done in cases where shareholders voted in high numbers against resolutions.

The move is part of the IA’s new role as host to a public register of shareholder votes, which follows a corporate governance reform instigated by the UK government.

The letter sent yesterday was to FTSE All-Share companies that received votes of 20% against any resolution or withdrew a resolution in 2017.

The IA said it wanted to give those companies an opportunity to provide a public explanation before the register goes live at the end of the year about how they had addressed shareholder concerns.

A link to the companies’ responses will be included alongside their voting data as part of the public register.

Chris Cummings, CEO of the IA, said: “The public register, which for the first time will bring together information on shareholder voting with responses from companies, will encourage greater accountability and ultimately change company behaviour.” 

In the same IA statement, Margot James MP, the business minister, said: “While the majority of British companies put responsible practices at the heart of their business, including ensuring pay is in line with performance, there are some that fail to address their shareholders’ concerns about bosses’ pay.

“This register will help to hold those companies to account, as well as giving them a platform to demonstrate what they are doing to address those concerns.”

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