The percentage of female directors across the ASX 200 has risen dramatically since 2009 when it stood at just 8.3%. However, the AICD’s quarterly 30% by 2018:Gender Diversity Progress Report shows that at the end of August there were 25.4% female directors across the ASX 200 – only marginally above the 25.3% achieved by the end of 2016.
AICD Chairman Elizabeth Proust AO said that the halt in progress was concerning. “Hopefully this report serves as wake-up call to directors, investors and shareholders across the ASX 200,” she said. “There’s no doubt that this AGM season we need action to achieve greater gender diversity on the boards of Australia’s largest companies.
“The research is clear. Gender diversity on boards is not just common sense, it is also good business sense.
“Considering the business case for diversity, the fact that there are still 11 ASX 200 boards with no women on their boards is astounding. The good news however is that number has halved, down from 22 boards without any women on them this time last year.
“There are 64 boards that have only one female director. This includes 10 companies where the lone female director has been there for more than three years and multiple men have been appointed to the board since her appointment. “One female director does not equal gender diversity. The research shows that critical mass, that is 30%, needs to be achieved in order to see the full benefits of diversity realised.
“The AICD will be watching this AGM season with great interest to see what percentage of board appointments are women.”
Download 30% by 2018: Gender diversity progress report for June – August 2017
AICD Chair Elizabeth Proust will be speaking at the National Press Club about creating equal opportunities for women in corporate Australia, the public service and sport. You can buy tickets here.