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Directors from the boards of SBER Ecosystem companies completed a training session on corporate governance

Nov 19, 2020

The training session on corporate governance “A board of directors as a tool for developing SBER Ecosystem companies” took place on 18 November 2020 in Zoom. The session was specifically targeted at the boards of companies within SBER Ecosystem in an effort to develop the directors’ personal competencies as well as acquire additional practical expertise that would be relevant for further successful development of the Ecosystem companies.

Some of the leading experts in corporate governance from Russia and abroad participated in the session as speakers: Janhavi Dadarkar (corporate governance expert, Institute of Directors, UK) as well as directors from the boards of major Russian companies: Vasily Sidorov (independent director, Aeroflot, Russian Railways, Russian Post), Regina von Flemming (independent director, MTS, Sovkombank, Accenture), and Vitaly Podolsky (independent director, LSR Group). Sberbank was represented by Nadya Wells, the independent director on the Supervisory Board of Sberbank.

Alexander Ikonnikov, the Chairman of the Supervisory Board of the Independent Directors Association (IDA) and a leading Russian expert in corporate governance, moderated the session.

The main topics of Ms Dadarkar’s presentation and the follow-up discussion among the participants were: specific nature of directors’ activities in subsidiaries; problems and challenges in corporate governance faced by directors of subsidiaries; and principles for determining the best configuration for a board of directors and adding executive or independent directors on the board of a subsidiary. The agenda also included review and solution of practical cases and problems illustrating the most interesting corporate governance issues.

Nadya Wells took part in a discussion about the role of an independent director on a board. She highlighted the need for directors to continuously work on themselves and broaden their horizons, which is guaranteed to come in handy later on, when they formulate their independent opinion. “It is essential to always be learning, especially if you work in an innovative field.  You should find the time to learn about new technologies, new corporate governance models, and new standards in your company’s industry. It is important to study new aspects, which might apply to you as a director,” Ms Wells said.

The second part of the session moderated by Philip Gudgeon, the CEO of SCHNEIDER GROUP, focused on practical elements of directors’ activities and featured lifehacks from the participants based on their own experience on the board.