Heavy focus on risk a threat to growth, say executives

Independent.ie (Ireland)
By Sarah McCabe
May 16, 2013

COMPANY directors are focusing so heavily on avoiding risks that they are threatening corporate growth, according to Irish business executives.

Delegates at a major conference on corporate governance held in Dublin said that the country’s business leaders must move away from excessive risk avoidance and refocus on opportunities for expansion.

“It’s hardly surprising that the focus in recent years has been on managing downside risk,” said Bob Semple, a partner at accounting firmPricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) [EXPAND Read more]

“But if we are to avoid excessive risk-avoidance, it will be essential to identify attractive opportunities for growth – whether in new markets or in new products and services.”

Jobs Minister Richard Bruton has said that implementing outstandingEU laws like corporate governance legislation is a priority for the Irish presidency.

“Effective rules for company law and good corporate governance are essential for the efficient management of this single market,” said Mr Bruton.

But half of the business executives attending the conference said they thought that good corporate governance could not be legislated for.

The majority of those surveyed agreed the pay provided to company directors needs to be more transparent and that shareholders need more influence over these pay packets.

The need for more training was also flagged. Most feel that audit committees should not be expected to take on more governance responsibilities without more training being provided. [/EXPAND]