Ethos published this Thursday the 20th edition of its voting guidelines and governance principles for the 2021 general meetings. Ethos asks the major emitters of greenhouse gases to publish and submit to shareholders' approval an annual report on their climate strategy and introduces new voting criteria into its guidelines.
At Credit Suisse Group’s annual general meeting to be held on 30 April 2020, Ethos recommends not to grant the discharge to the bank’s governing bodies, in light of the serious governance failings revealed by the surveillance of the bank’s former managers. Ethos also recommends to oppose the board and executive remuneration, as well as the re-election of the chairman of the board of directors. Finally, due to the economic uncertainties relative to the Covid-19 pandemic, Ethos recommends shareholders to forgo the payment of the dividend this year.
Meyer Burger: Ethos recommends not to approve the election of the representative of Sentis Capital at the extraordinary general meeting to be held on 30 October 2019
Ethos Foundation recommends to support the board of directors and not to approve the election of Mark Kerekes at the extraordinary general meeting to be held on 30 October. This meeting was convened by the group of shareholders led by Sentis Capital (owned by the Russian investor Petr Kondrashev) and other shareholders (together holding 11% of the company's capital) to elect their representative to the board of directors. Meyer Burger's board unanimously recommends that this election be rejected.
The general meetings of Ethos Services SA and Ethos Foundation were held on 13 June 2019 in Bern. All the proposals were unanimously accepted respectively by the shareholders of Ethos Services and members of Ethos Foundation. The general meetings were concluded with a public event and a panel discussion on the Responsible Business initiative. This event brought together nearly 120 people.
At the annual general meeting of UBS to be held on 2 May 2019, Ethos recommends to oppose all proposals related to the remuneration of the board of directors and the executive management. Ethos considers that the CHF 73.3 million requested for the 2018 bonus of the 13 members of the executive management is excessive in light of the bad performance of the bank’s share price in 2018.
At the Annual General Meeting to be held on 26 April 2019, Ethos recommends to oppose all proposals related to the remuneration of the board of directors and the executive management of Credit Suisse. The proposed increase in the executive management’s variable remuneration is excessive in light of the bank’s financial results.
Since the entry into force of the Ordinance against excessive remuneration (the Minder initiative), the different votes on board and executive remuneration are the proposals most contested by the shareholders, which is reflected in a stabilisation of overall remuneration in SPI companies and a slight decrease in the largest listed companies.