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SWITZERLAND: 2022 PROXY SEASON REVIEW, SAY ON CLIMATE, GENDER DIVERSITY, REM AND ESG IN THE BOARDROOM

SWITZERLAND: 2022 PROXY SEASON REVIEW, SAY ON CLIMATE, GENDER DIVERSITY, REM AND ESG IN THE BOARDROOM

16 December 2022

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Morrow Sodali is pleased to present a video featuring Andrea Bischoff, Managing Director, and David Risser, Managing Director at Nestor Advisors - A Morrow Sodali Company, outlining the key findings from the 2022 proxy season in Switzerland as detailed in the recent Lighthouse Europe edition.

Findings include:
  • The decrease in quorums reflects changes in the shareholder structure of SMI companies rather than restrictions on the physical participation of shareholders.
  • Board independence is comparatively high, with an average of 88%, according to the companies’ internal independence assessment. Only two SMI issuers have less than 50% of free float investors. Both companies’ board independence averages 88%. 75% of SMI boards are chaired by an independent director.
  • Support for board-related proposals (96%) was higher in 2022 than in the previous years (free float: 95%). The average increase in support of elections was mostly driven by a stronger trend in the approval of remuneration reports, with a positive knock-on effect on compensation committee appointments.
  • Swiss legislation does not currently require a minimum board representation of each gender. Many investors and proxy advisors nevertheless set their own minimum thresholds and would hold individual board members accountable if they are not compliant. Limited gender representation on the board, therefore, affects the elections of nomination committee members or even the board chair.
  • Binding proposals on remuneration budgets receive a significantly higher support than advisory votes on remuneration support.
Find out more insights regarding the key trends and common themes emerging from shareholder meetings across the markets in Europe (France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and the UK) by downloading the full edition of Lighthouse Europe. This edition also includes an in-depth analysis of Say on Climate, gender diversity and E&S in the boardroom, as well as investor insights Q&A with BNP Paribas Asset Management, Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), and UBS.

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