Press release

Vince Cable celebrates ‘outstanding progress’ for women on boards

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Event highlights the excellent progress made to date by the FTSE 100 in increasing female representation on their boards to 22.8%.

placeholder

Business Secretary Vince Cable is bringing together many of the 160 women appointed to FTSE 100 boards since 2011 at a celebration event in London.

The event, hosted by Vince Cable and Lloyds Banking Group this evening (10 March 2015), will highlight the excellent progress made to date by the FTSE 100 in increasing female representation on their boards to 22.8%, according to figures released in October 2014.

The progress so far brings female representation in the FTSE 100 close to achieving the target set by Lord Davies in 2011 of 25% in 2015. Updated statistics relating to the FTSE 100 and 250 will be published on 25 March 2015.

Individual companies such as Old Mutual have boosted their female boardroom representation to as much as 38.5% and the progress made across the FTSE 100 demonstrates the increasing opportunities available to Britain’s top businesswomen.

The celebration will also mark International Women’s Day which was held on Sunday 8 March, emphasising the key theme of increasing the numbers of women in senior leadership roles.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said:

Outstanding progress has been made since we launched the Davies Review in 2011 and it is a mark of what has been achieved to see so many recent appointees to FTSE 100 boardrooms here tonight.

Businesses must continue to keep up the momentum to reach our ambition of having at least a quarter of women making up our top company boards in 2015. In the last 5 years, we have seen a real change in culture and the success of our voluntary business-led approach. Diverse management teams are good for business and I want to see even more talented and capable business women appointed to the boards of Britain’s biggest companies.

Lord Davies of Abersoch said:

The progress seen since I made my recommendations 4 years ago has been a revelation. It is inspiring to see that the biggest companies in Britain have appointed so many top businesswomen to their boards and I have every reason to expect that the 25% target will be reached this year.

However, we must recognise there is much work to do before we achieve true gender parity and it is vital that companies focus on continued progress, increasing in the number of women appointed as executive directors. The evidence shows that companies with balanced boards are able to be more competitive globally.

Lord Blackwell, Chairman of Lloyds Banking Group said:

We strongly believe in the importance of providing opportunities for talented women to participate in the leadership of businesses and have ourselves welcomed 3 female directors to our board since 2011. In addition, we think it is critical to build a strong talent pipeline so that we have access to the best talent and enable more women to take up executive positions and non-executive director roles.

We have a goal to have 40% of senior management positions filled by women by 2020 and have put in place a structure that supports female colleagues to rise up the organisation in a way that benefits both them and the business.

Notes to Editors

  1. The Women on Boards celebration dinner is being hosted by Vince Cable on Tuesday 10 March 2015 at Lancaster House in London. For pictures of the event for publication or more information, please contact:
  2. Lord Davies will be publishing his latest Review into Women on Boards on Wednesday 25 March 2015. A copy of this report will be available at Women on boards reports
  3. Cranfield School of Business Management will release their annual “The Female FTSE Report 2015” on Wednesday 25 March 2015. A copy of the report will be available at www.som.cranfield.ac.uk/som/ftse
  4. In February 2014, Vince Cable revealed the top 10 most improved FTSE 100 companies for increased female representation between 2010 and October 2014. The top 10 boards were:
    • Old Mutual
    • Aggreko
    • Glaxosmithkline
    • Wolseley
    • Land Securities Group
    • Associated British Foods
    • Capita
    • Petrofac
    • Weir Group
    • HSBC
  5. As of October 2014 published statistics show that:
    • FTSE 100 – female representation on boards has increased to 22.8% - up from 20.7% in March 2014
    • FTSE 250 – female representation on boards has increased to 17.4% - up from 15.6% in March 2014
    • there are no all-male boards in the FTSE 100
  6. International Women’s Day took place on Sunday 8 March 2015. One of the key themes of its #MakeItHappen campaign is to increase the numbers of women in senior leadership roles.
Published 10 March 2015