LONDON (Reuters) – Using digital annual conferences by firms through the coronavirus epidemic should not grow to be the norm as soon as restrictions on individuals’s actions are lifted, accountable funding marketing campaign group ShareAction stated on Thursday.
Such a transfer may forestall traders from attending and holding firms to account ShareAction stated in a letter to the pinnacle of Britain’s enterprise ministry seen by Reuters.
“A big proportion of retail shareholders are older individuals who are typically much less comfy with utilizing the form of expertise required to host a digital AGM,” Coverage Supervisor Rachel Haworth stated within the letter to Alok Sharma.
“As well as, bodily AGMs enable retail shareholders and the board a novel and unscripted alternative to satisfy and have conversations in individual.”
Whereas some firms had plans in place to permit traders to submit a query electronically, Haworth stated this may be abused.
“If attendees can solely submit questions prematurely and can’t ‘increase their hand’ and ask them in actual time, this might enable firms to cherry-pick which questions they reply,” she stated.
Earlier this week the London Inventory Trade stated it might again quickly permitting firms to carry their annual conferences electronically this 12 months due to the pandemic.
The Chartered Governance Institute has revealed steering on annual conferences through the epidemic, drawn up along with the Monetary Reporting Council, which regulates auditors and company governance codes, and regulation agency Slaughter & Might.
Digital-only conferences should not viable given they could not represent legitimate conferences, however the articles of some firms enable them to carry hybrid conferences, that means a mix of bodily and digital, the steering stated.
Firms have the choice of fixing their articles to permit on-line conferences.
Reporting by Simon Jessop, modifying by Larry King