ASX200 hits 30 per cent gender diversity target

13 June 2019
| By Hannah |
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The ASX200 has finally reached 30 per cent of women directors on boards, with more than 40 ASX200 companies also having more than 40 per cent women directors and 20 companies having at least half.

The 70 per cent of positions held by men accounted for 90 per cent of chair roles however, and there were still five ASX200 companies with no women directors and 46 with just one. More than 25 per cent of ASX200-300 had zero women boards.

The Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI), who has long agitated for improved gender diversity on boards, called for companies to aim for a 40:40:20 mix in their governance, with the final portion allowing flexibility for appropriate renewal. The group believed that if companies were unwilling to set a reasonable timeframe or those targets didn’t improve diversity by 2025, then regulators should intervene.

ACSI chief executive, Louise Davidson, still welcomed the news that the 30 per cent barrier had been surpassed, however.

“Investors have long recognised the value of board gender diversity. ACSI and our members adopted a 30 per cent target in 2015. To have corporate Australia achieve and, in many cases, now exceed this target is a good outcome,” she said.

“More diverse boards make for better governed companies which is intrinsically linked to long-term shareholder value. Reaching this milestone is a positive step for the millions of working and retired Australians who own shares in listed companies through their superannuation savings.”

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