News Analysis

The London Stock Exchange is to list its first company with an all-female board

by Stephen Conmy on Nov 26, 2021


Members receive exclusive insights and opportunities

The Corporate Governance Institute provides it's members with exclusive content, a network of directors and business leaders, details of available board positions, and the tools and resources required for a successful governance career.

Learn More

Already a member? Log in here

A renewable energy investment trust that will list on the London Stock Exchange is believed to be the first to have an all-female board.

What’s happened?

The board of Atrato Onsite Energy, which wants to raise £150m by IPO next month, comprises three women. This listing will be seen as a good win for diversity advocates battling for greater representation of women in top business positions in the United Kingdom.

The London Stock Exchange dates back to 1608, and it is understood that this is the first time a listed company will have an all-female board.

Women held 33 per cent of board positions at FTSE 100 and FTSE 250 companies by 2020, a target set by the government-backed Hampton-Alexander review.

However, twenty-one per cent of FTSE 100 boards and 32 per cent of FTSE 250 boards had still not reached this goal, while 29.4 per cent of executive leadership teams had not reached the target.

What would it mean?

Atrato’s board will comprise Juliet Davenport (chair, pictured above), Marlene Wood (head of the audit committee) and Faye Goss (non-executive director).

Atrato will mainly invest in solar photovoltaic panels for the rooftops of warehouses, factories, and other industrial buildings.

“The company will play a leading role in providing new green power capacity, delivering businesses a dedicated clean energy supply at a low fixed cost,” says Davenport.

The firm targets an annualised dividend of 5 pence per share for the first and second financial years following the IPO, and it will seek to grow the dividend progressively after that. The firm will target an annual total return of 8 – 10 per cent in the first financial year following the IPO and over the medium term.

Atrato Onsite Energy expects to publish a prospectus on or around November 1, 2021, and close the IPO by the end of November 2021. The company will trade under the ticker “ROOF”.

What is board gender diversity like in other countries?

Over a third of the seats on the boards of the UK’s biggest firms are occupied by women, meeting a government target set five years ago.

Women hold 43.8 per cent of board seats at France’s 40 biggest publicly traded companies. For Norway, this number is 39.5%; for Sweden, 37.3 %; and for Italy, 36.5 %.

In Ireland 25 per cent of Iseq companies have no female representation at board level, while only a third of new directors appointed last year were women, compared to 66 per cent male.

Red Flags

Related Posts