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Journey of corporate governance in India@75
Jun 06, 2022

National Foundation for Corporate Governance (NFCG) under the aegis of MCA, in partnership with Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) hosted a program themed on “Journey of Corporate Governance in India@75” in the “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav (AKAM)” to celebrate 75 years of India’s independence.

Speaking at the conference on the topic “Corporate Governance in Family Business: Fulfilling Family Legacy Through Boards”Mr Farhad Forbes, Co-Chairman, Forbes Marshall, spoke about the importance of building trust and communication with stakeholders, transcending values and having open conversations on issues revolving family business eg. Shareholding, transition in ownership, management, succession, etc.

Emphasizing on the need to have independent directors on the board, he stated that keeping only family members on the boards, limits the horizons of the business. He also spoke about inculcating leadership through experience outside the family business and linkage of passion for business and legacy, which all are imperatives to good governance.

While underlining the importance of passion in running family businesses, Mr Kartik Bharat Ram, Joint Managing Director, SRF Ltd., deliberated upon working on issues in family business such as constitution, dividend distribution, funding, transparency, governance, how to curb distrust and suspicion. He underlined the need for role modelling of values such as integrity, respect for others, transparency by the promoters and top management. He also stressed upon the importance of independent directors on board so that concerns pertaining to the family businesses are highlighted. IT enabled services and self-certification are imperatives for ensuring compliance and governance in family businesses, Mr Bharat Ram added.

Addressing the session on “Self – Reliant MSME: Imperative for The Indian Economy”, with a focus on importance of MSME segment in the Indian economy, Importance of corporate governance and risk management and Challenges faced in implementing a robust governance and compliance mechanism, Mr Shreekant Somany, Chairman & Managing Director, Somany Ceramics Limited said that Product Quality and Corporate Governance are key for transforming MSME’s into large businesses of the future. He also shared views on key issues surrounding, how good Corporate Governance benefit MSME sector especially helping in making the business scalable, sustainable and attracting Investors by meeting investors’ expectations from corporate governance perspective.

Discussion also focussed on key issues surrounding need for supervisory Board, role of independent directors, Right organization structure, availability and qualification of people especially for finance function, segregation of duty and control. Session also emphasised on key policies aspects related to delegation of authority, whistle blowing and anti-fraud program, internal audit function, enterprise risk management, IT infrastructure, Financial reporting controls and Compliance framework.

The MSME Session was chaired by Mr Shreekant Somany, Chairman & Managing Director, Somany Ceramics Limited. Session was moderated by Mr Puneet Gupta, Managing Director, Protiviti and other speakers included Mr Ashok Saigal, Managing Director, Frontier Technologies, Mr Dr K Nandakumar, Managing Director, Chemtrols Industries, Mr K K M Kutty, Managing Director, Sealings and Jointings and Mr Rajat Mehra, Partner, Rajat Chemical Industry.

The last session on topic “Start–ups and Corporate Governance” witnessed deliberations on importance of value creation, transparent corporate governance practices, role of nomination and remuneration committee, right disclosures at the right time, need to understand the financial statements and maintain transparency in transactions so as not to fall in ambit of related party transactions or conflict of interest.

It was further discussed that lapses in corporate governance may lead to drastic consequences for the company. The speakers observed as to how blockchain technology can help lay down compliance systems and processes and the role that artificial intelligence can play in achieving corporate governance norms. The panel highlighted the need for board diversity and independent directors on board to manage multiple facets of business. It was deliberated that the value system, code of conduct, broad understanding of ethics and whistle-blower policy of the company are imperatives as they reflect on the corporate governance of the organization. Besides, due diligence, tracking right metrics, spending time on revenue recognition, transactions on arms’ length basis, regular communication with stakeholders and good board meeting processes were recognized as part of sound corporate governance practices to be followed. The session was moderated by Mr Piyush Sharma, Head- Centre of Leadership, IIM Ahmedabad and the speakers included Ms Kripe Singh, Founder & Creative Director, Rachnashala Productions LLP, Mr Nikhil Goyal, CEO, Super Aqua Watercrafts Pvt. Ltd. and Mr Amit Srivastava, Founder, Constems-AI and Mr Satish Shukla, Founder, Addverb.

6 June 2022

New Delhi

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