The International Corporate Governance Council (ICGN) has appointed Carl Rosen, head of corporate governance at the Second Swedish National Pension Fund (AP2), as its new executive director replacing Anne Simpson who will join CalPERS as senior portfolio manager for corporate governance this month.
Simpson was ICGN’s inaugural executive director and during her tenure has doubled its size and stepped up its role in policy advocacy and best practice development before such forums as the International Accounting Standards Board, the US Securities and Exchange Commission, the US Senate Banking Committee, the United Kingdom’s Financial Services Authority and the Chinese Securities Regulatory Commission.
With CalPERS, she will oversee the focus list program, which involves monitoring portfolio companies’ performance related to finance, corporate governance practices and CalPERS strategic issues. Simpson also will help CalPERS respond to ongoing market reform issues before US policymakers and regulators.
At the time of her appointment George Diehr, chair of the CalPERS investment committee said: “In Anne Simpson we are getting one of the world’s most influential investor activists. She is widely recognised in the global corporate governance community, which knows her for her many appearances before political, policy and regulatory bodies.”
The mission of ICGN, which is the leading international advocate for corporate governance, with members in more than 40 countries including institutional investors responsible for more than $9.5 trillion, is to exchange information and raise standards of corporate governance internationally.
RosÃ©n, who has been an ICGN board member since 2008, said strengthening shareholder rights and ensuring shareholder responsibility were the priorities of ICGN members and would form the area of focus for him as executive director.
“They want to ensure that markets avoid the dangers of over-regulation that can follow the financial crisis. These questions will be my first priorities as executive director of ICGN,”Â he said. “For example, stronger shareholder rights are key to curbing excessive executive pay globally, while we also need to ensure that ownership rights are exercised with responsibility.”
At a mid-year meeting in March the ICGN members considered: the future of remuneration policies; the future of the dialogue between listed companies and shareholders; the future of minority shareholder protection; advantages and disadvantages of the stakeholder models of continental Europe and East Asia.
Its annual conference – The Route Map to Reform and Recovery – will be held in Sydney, Australia from July 13-15.