Kennedy Wilson Europe Real Estate Plc
The Mercantile Investment Trust Plc
Aberdeen Private Equity Fund Limited
Westminster University, Higher Education
Baby Hub, SME
JPMorgan Claverhouse Plc
Intellectual Property Office UK
UK Government Investments
Fidelity Asian Values Plc
Jersey Legal Information Board
Tomorrow’s People, Charity
We consider that together the Directors have a balance of skills, qualifications and experience which are relevant to the Company and the Group as a whole. The Board and this Committee support the recommendations of the Davies Report and believe in the value and importance of diversity in the boardroom. However, we do not consider that it is appropriate or in the interest of the Company and its shareholders to set prescriptive diversity targets for the Board. The proportion of female Directors on the Board is currently 40%.
The Board is committed to improving the opportunities for people from a diverse range of backgrounds to understand and prepare for membership of corporate boards. During the period under review, we took on board an apprentice from Board Apprentice Ltd, which is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to increasing diversity on boards by widening the pool of board-ready candidates and looks at diversity as beyond gender and encompassing ethnicity, culture, age, disability, personality and skill set. For a period of one year, we have appointed Charlmaine Vella as a Board apprentice and, in that capacity, Charlmaine attends all Board and Committee meetings for educational purposes and takes part in discussions only when invited to do so by the Board. She receives no remuneration or expenses from the Company.
Last year the founder of a not-for-profit company, Board Apprentice, approached me to ask whether Claverhouse would consider appointing an apprentice to shadow the Board in order to gain experience of the workings of a company at Board level. We considered this approach and discussed it with JPMAM and were in favour of the initiative. Accordingly we asked Board Apprentice to let us have CVs of candidates who were interested in a board apprenticeship at an investment trust.
The Board reviewed a number of CVs and asked the Chairman-elect to meet with a number of candidates. On his recommendation, the Board have invited Sharon Mavin to join with us as our board apprentice for 12 months from the date of the AGM in April. Sharon is an academic and is a Professor of Organisation and Human Resource Management from the Newcastle Business School, Northumbria University. She has been involved in issues relating to diversity, senior women at work, and is leading research in support of the Davies Report (2011) on Women on the Board in the UK. The appointment is strictly for a 12 month period to give Sharon further experience and it is not intended or expected to lead to a directorship of your Company. As apprentice Sharon will not be a Director of the Company. However, she will have access to all of the papers that are seen by Directors (save in the unlikely event of such secrecy or conflict of interest such that papers will be withheld) and it is intended that she will attend all Board meetings as an observer. She will not be paid, although the Company will reimburse travel costs and incidental expenses.
Your Board hopes that shareholders will find favour with this initiative and I look forward to introducing Sharon at the AGM.