UK/GERMANY - Hermes, the fund manager owned by the £39.7bn (€44bn) BT Pension Scheme, is planning to push for a say on supervisory boards' remuneration during the shareholders meetings at Siemens and Porsche.
Hermes - one of Europe's most influential shareholders on corporate governances issues - is concerned, in particular, about the structure of the remuneration of the supervisory board and the way it is presented to shareholders.
Hans-Christoph Hirt, head of European corporate governance at the company said in a speech during Siemens' shareholder meeting in Munich today: "If the amounts for the current business year as mentioned by the media are true, then one can surely ask - based on the current state of the economy - whether in the development of the new policy sensitivity had been lacking."
Hirt told IPE companies should facilitate an information flow between shareholders and the supervisory board, which determines the remuneration of the management board and enables shareholders to have a vote on pay, as many have fought for in the UK.
Hirt will also address the annual general meeting of the Stuttgart-based car manufacturer Porsche on Friday to raise its concerns about the remuneration of Porsche's chief executive officer (CEO) Wendelin Wiedeking.
"He reportedly has earned €80m last year, and shareholders don't know anything about the structure of this remuneration. There is a very clear need now to address this issue now," Hirt told IPE.
In its corporate governance principles for Germany, set out in July last year, Hermes encourages companies to fully explain the design of performance-related pay plans for supervisory board members.
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