Number of women on ASX 200 boards rising steadily

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Women are being appointed to ASX 200 boards at a faster rate than ever before but this momentum needs to be sustained if companies are to reach a 30 per cent target set by the Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD).

A new report released by the AICD shows that 42 per cent of all directors appointed to ASX 200 boards so far in 2016 are women, versus 5 per cent in calendar 2009 (when the AICD began compiling statistics).

This means that 23.6 per cent of all directors of ASX 200 companies were female at 31 May, compared to 8.3 per cent in calendar 2009.

The AICD’s target is for all ASX 200 companies to have 30 per cent female directors by the end of 2018.

“The solid progress this year gives us hope that Australia’s biggest companies have got the message that gender diversity is not just common sense, but also good business sense. We applaud the chairs who have appointed more female directors and encourage others to follow their example so that we can reach our 30 per cent target,” said John Brodgen, the AICD’s Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer.

The AICD report provides a breakdown of the proportion of women on every ASX 200 board and lists the 20 companies that still have no female directors.

Medibank Private is the best performer because females, including its Chair Elizabeth Alexander, accounted for 71.4 per cent of its board at 31 May. Another five companies had an even 50 per cent split between male and female directors.

“In total, 53 ASX 200 companies have reached our 30 per cent target. This is a good start but the rate of growth in female appointments needs to continue if we are to have a realistic chance of achieving our goal within our stated timeframe of 2018,” Mr Brogden said.

“Companies who are lagging behind need to take action to catch up with their peers who are already well on the way to achieving the 30 per cent target.”

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