The relative weight of women on the Ibex board of directors reaches 19.83% in 2016

The 4th report on Women in the Board of Directors from the Ibex 35 companies, elaborated by ATREVIA and the business school IESE, was presented this morning in the Genoa Financial Club by Núria Vilanova, president and founder of ATREVIA and Núria Chinchilla, lecturer in the IESE and director of the International Center for Work and Family (ICWF). This new edition gives positive facts in terms of equality: the presence of women in the Ibex board of directors has reached a percentage weight of 19.83%, two points more than the previous year closer to reaching the European average of 21.2%. Moreover, 18 advisors are foreigners which imply a large international representation.

Núria Vilanova signaled that “this year only one company continues not holding female directors in their boards, in the case of three the last year”. It was highlighted that “ten companies have incorporated women to their boards of directors and the two new Ibex corporations, Merlin Properties and AENA, have included three and four women in their boards of directors respectively.

The number of positions in the board of directors of Ibex companies occupied by women rises to 91, eleven more than the previous year, which represents an increase of 13.75%. The total number of women in the Ibex 35 boards of directors rises to 84, with 6 of those having more than just an advisor presence: Belén Villalonga Morenés (Acciona and Grifols), Isabel Tocino (Enagás and Banco Santander), Helena Revoredo (Banco Popular, Endesa and Mediaset), Eva Castillo (Bankia and Telefónica), Rosa María García (Bankinter and Acerinox) and Catalina Miñarro (ACS and Mapfe) are present in various boards of directors.

Núria Chinchilla explained that to make companies more efficient, the unified Code of Good Governance recommends the reduction in the number of advisors.  Therefore, from 2010, they have reduced the number of positions to 43, which is 8.56% of the total number of advisors. The number of men in the board of directors has been reduced by 18% since 2010. In the same period, the number of women advisors has increased by 71.7%. This means that 81 male advisors have left and 38 female ones have entered into the boards of directors. Without a doubt, the scarce presence of female executive advisors (3.3% of the total), denotes the necessity for a cultural change in companies to maximize the progress of women in all director positions.

The reduction in the size of the main organs of management in big Spanish companies unites a greater presence of women in them that leads an increase in the relative weight of women in the board of directors, growing until 19.83%, in front of 17.32% in the previous year. This figure is quite relevant if we compare it to the figures of 2010, when the relative weight of women in the boards of directors was 10.56%.

12 companies of the 35 that form part of the Ibex-35 employed more women last year, especially the companies Gas Natural (Benita María Ferrero-Waldner and Cristina Garmendia Mendizábal) and OHL (Macarena Sainz de Vicuña and Reyes Calderón Cuadrado).

Great international representation

Referring to the nationality of female advisors, an increase in international representation is noteworthy: 18 female advisors as regards to 14 in the previous year. Approximately 39% are European and almost 30% are Latin American. In regards to their typology, all the foreign female advisors are independent, apart from Vanisha Mittal (Arcelormittal) that is an executive.

On the other hand, the most common typology between the female advisors of the Ibex-35 is the Independents that add up to 62 female advisors, 68.13% of the total. The Sundays which represent 21.98% (20 advisors), having presence in nine companies. Only three female advisors are executives: Ana Patricia Botín (Banco Santander), Dolores Dancausa (Bankinter) and Vanisha Mittal (ArcelorMittal).

Following the recommendations from the unified Code of Good Governance, a large number of companies hold an independent coordinator advisor which is necessary when the functions of the CEO and the President fall to the same person. Presently, three women hold this position in various councils: Carmen Gómez Barreda Tous (REE), Ana Palacio Vallelersundi (Enagás) and Inés Macho Stadler (Iberdrola).

Almost all of the female advisors (96.43%) have university degrees. More than 40% are trained in the area of economics, commerce or business administration. Law would be the second area with the highest presence of the female advisors in the Ibex-35.

REE, Iberdrola, FCC, OHL, Santander, Grifols and Abertis are the companies that hold the greatest female representation in their boards of directors. Técnicas Reunidas is the only company that doesn’t hold any female advisors, comparing to three computing companies the previous year.

Closer to Europe

Even though there is a long way to go in terms of equality in the boards of directors, this year has shown considerable progress, cutting the distance of the European average of women in the boards of directors that in April 2015, the European Commission was situated at 21.2% (a point more than what was registered in the previous year). Spain has reached 19.83% in February 2016, a little less than two points from Europe, comparing to 17.32% in the previous year.

Red Eléctrica and Grifols are the only companies that comply with the recommendations from the European Commission, with at least 40% female presence in the non executive positions of the board of directors.

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