Company ownership: transparency and trust discussion paper
- Department for Business, Innovation & Skills
- Part of:
- Small Business, Enterprise and Employment (SBEE) Act and Corporate governance
- First published:
- 15 July 2013
- Last updated:
- 24 April 2014, see all updates
This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
This consultation has concluded
Download the full outcome
Transparency and trust: enhancing transparency of UK company ownership and increasing trust in UK business - government response
Ref: BIS/14/672 PDF, 536KB, 74 pages
Ref: BIS/14/671 PDF, 1.72MB, 184 pages
Detail of outcome
Outlines how we plan to proceed with the following policies:
- establish a publicly accessible central registry of UK company beneficial ownership information
- improve transparency of company ownership and control, including:
- abolishing bearer shares
- prohibiting the use of corporate directors (with exceptions)
- increasing the accountability of those who control company directors
- improve trust in the UK regime for disqualifying company directors
- increase the likelihood of creditors being compensated where they have suffered loss from director misconduct
Read alongside the government response to the Company filing requirements consultation.
Published: ZIP, 177MB
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Detail of feedback received
We received 314 responses from:
- small and large businesses
- non government organisations
- academic experts
- enforcement agencies
We’ve published all the responses in the above attachment, except for those received from individuals. Instead, we’ve provided a list of the individuals’ names. All responses are available on request.
This consultation ran from
Proposals to enhance corporate transparency by improving our ability to understand who really owns and controls UK companies.
Transparency and trust: enhancing the transparency of UK company ownership and increasing trust in UK business - discussion paper
Ref: BIS/13/959 PDF, 580KB, 89 pages
Ref: BIS/13/959ES PDF, 380KB, 28 pages
Business success, and therefore economic growth, depends on investors, employees, consumers and the wider public having confidence in business. When companies do business with each other, those transactions must also be built on trust.
An effective and trusted system that identifies and deals with poor business behaviour reassures people that we operate fairly, and encourages honest entrepreneurs to invest in activities promoting growth and employment.
This paper considers a range of proposals to enhance the transparency of UK company ownership and increase trust in UK business. This will help:
- prevent illegal activity
- better enable companies to be held to account
- provide businesses, investors, employees and consumers with confidence that companies are acting fairly
Published: 15 July 2013
Updated: 24 April 2014
- Adding link to final Part B impact assessment
- Added public feedback and government response to the consultation.
- First published.