Women on Boards

Hong Kong 2019

Despite the growing awareness of the business case, the deep-rooted issues brought to light by the #MeToo movement and global efforts to drive positive change, Hong Kong’s lack of progress is overshadowed by a downward trend on almost all indicators, leading us to question: what will it take for Hong Kong to snap out of its complacency and seriously address this issue?

 

Key Data (Hong Kong)

Percentage of Women on Hang Seng Index (HSI) Boards

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019
Share
13.1 %
Women on HSI boards
Analysis
In our first quarterly update to the data, we are disappointed to report a significant decrease in the overall percentage of women on...
Analysis
Percentage of Women on Hang Seng Index (HSI) Boards

In our first quarterly update to the data, we are disappointed to report a significant decrease in the overall percentage of women on the boards of Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index companies, from 13.9% at the beginning of the year to 13.1% as of 1 April 2019.

We attribute this drop mainly to the fact that during the first 3 months of this year, there were no female appointments to HSI boards, while 14 appointments were made to men.  This was exacerbated by the addition of Techtronic Industries Company (which has an all-male board) to the HSI in March 2019, as well as the removal from the HSI of China Resources Power, which has two female directors.

This uninspiring start to the year prompts us to reiterate our message that having a gender diverse board is not about optics but about solidifying your business. A board made up of different, even conflicting, perspectives and life experiences encourage a culture of questioning and robust discussion. This will not only help to mitigate risks and strengthen governance but ensure a higher probability of business success, which is backed by a growing body of research. In these volatile and disruptive times, companies should demand a strong, diverse board that futureproofs their existence.

Key Data (Hong Kong)

Summary of Gender Diversity on HSI Boards

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019
Share

Companies with at least one female director

38 (76 %)
41 (80.4 %)
39 (78.0 %)
34 (68.0 %)
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016

Companies with multiple female directors

21 (42 %)
24 (47.1 %)
20 (40.0 %)
19 (38.0 %)
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016

Companies with female executive directors

17 (34 %)
19 (37.3 %)
15 (30.0 %)
13 (26.0 %)
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016

Companies with female CEOs

1 (2 %)
1 (2.0 %)
1 (2.0 %)
2 (4.0 %)
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016

Companies with all-male boards

12 (24 %)
10 (19.6 %)
11 (22.0 %)
16 (32.0 %)
  • 2019
  • 2018
  • 2017
  • 2016
Analysis
Unfortunately, we have seen a decrease in the representation of women across all of our diversity markers in Q2 of 2019. Companies with...
Analysis
Summary of Gender Diversity on HSI Boards

Unfortunately, we have seen a decrease in the representation of women across all of our diversity markers in Q2 of 2019. Companies with at least one female director have decreased by two in three months, as have companies with female executive directors; companies with multiple female directors have dropped from 22 to 21; and companies with all-male boards have increased by two to total twelve.

 

 

 

Key Data (Hong Kong)

Women on Boards League Table: HSI

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019 | Currently 50 constituents on the HSI
Share

Most eventful

New HSI Constituent
Rank
45
( 14)
Sino Land Company Ltd
0.0%
45 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 14)
Sino Land Company Ltd
% Women
0.0%
Board Size
10
No. of Women
0
Stock Code
83
Chairperson
Ng, Robert Chee Siong 黃志祥
Female Directors
48
(N.A.)
Techtronic Industries Co Ltd
0.0%
48 (N.A.)
Techtronic Industries Co Ltd
% Women
0.0%
Board Size
12
No. of Women
0
Stock Code
669
Chairperson
Pudwill, Horst Julius
Female Directors

Top 10

Rank
Name
New
Percent
1
( 1)
Sino Biopharmaceutical Ltd
36.4%
1 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
Sino Biopharmaceutical Ltd
% Women
36.4%
Board Size
11
No. of Women
4
Stock Code
1177
Chairperson
Tse, Theresa Y Y 謝其潤
Female Directors
Cheng, Cheung Ling 鄭翔玲
Li, Mingqin 李名沁
Lu, Hong 魯紅
Tse, Theresa Y Y 謝其潤
2
( 1)
HSBC Holdings plc
33.3%
2 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
HSBC Holdings plc
% Women
33.3%
Board Size
15
No. of Women
5
Stock Code
5
Chairperson
Tucker, Mark Edward 杜嘉祺
Female Directors
Casey, Kathleen Louise 祈嘉蓮
Cha Shih, Laura May Lun 史美倫
Lee, Irene Yun Lien 利蘊蓮
Miller, Heidi 苗凱婷
van der Meer Mohr, Pauline 梅爾莫
2
( 1)
Hang Seng Bank Ltd
33.3%
2 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
Hang Seng Bank Ltd
% Women
33.3%
Board Size
12
No. of Women
4
Stock Code
11
Chairperson
Ch'ien, Raymond Kuo Fung 錢果豐
Female Directors
Cheang, Louisa Wai Wan 鄭慧敏
Chiang, Lai Yuen 蔣麗苑
Kwan, Margaret Wing Han 關穎嫺
Legg, Sarah Catherine 李瑞霞
2
( 2)
Link Real Estate Investment Trust
33.3%
2 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 2)
Link Real Estate Investment Trust
% Women
33.3%
Board Size
12
No. of Women
4
Stock Code
823
Chairperson
Allen, Nicholas Charles 聶雅倫
Female Directors
Tan, May Siew Boi 陳秀梅 
Tan, Poh Lee 陳寶莉
Tse, Nancy Sau Ling   謝秀玲
Young, Elaine Carole  
5
(--)
China Shenhua Energy Company Ltd
30.0%
5 (--)
China Shenhua Energy Company Ltd
% Women
30.0%
Board Size
10
No. of Women
3
Stock Code
1088
Chairperson
Ling, Wen 凌文
Female Directors
Jiang, Bo 姜波
Tam, Maria Wai Chu 譚惠珠
Zhong, Christina Yingjie 鍾穎潔
6
(--)
MTR Corporation Ltd
23.8%
6 (--)
MTR Corporation Ltd
% Women
23.8%
Board Size
21
No. of Women
5
Stock Code
66
Chairperson
Ma, Frederick Si Hang 馬時亨
Female Directors
Chan Wong, Pamela Shui 陳黃穗
Chan Yuen, Dorothy Tak Fai 陳阮德徽
Chan, Mable 陳美寶
Lee, Rose Wai Mun 李慧敏
Li Li, Lucia Ka Lai 李李嘉麗
7
( 1)
CK Infrastructure Holdings Ltd (BM)
23.5%
7 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
CK Infrastructure Holdings Ltd (BM)
% Women
23.5%
Board Size
17
No. of Women
4
Stock Code
1038
Chairperson
Li, Victor Tzar Kuoi 李澤鉅
Female Directors
Chen, Tsien Hua 陳建華
Kwok Lee, Eva 郭李綺華
Lee Wong, Angelina Pui Ling 李王佩玲
Sng, Sow Mei 潘秀美
8
( 1)
CK Asset Holdings Ltd (KY)
23.1%
8 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
CK Asset Holdings Ltd (KY)
% Women
23.1%
Board Size
13
No. of Women
3
Stock Code
1113
Chairperson
Li, Victor Tzar Kuoi 李澤鉅
Female Directors
Hung, Katherine Siu Lin 洪小蓮
Pau, Ezra Yee Wan 鮑綺雲
Woo, Grace Chia Ching 吳佳慶
8
( 1)
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd
23.1%
8 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 1)
Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Ltd
% Women
23.1%
Board Size
13
No. of Women
3
Stock Code
388
Chairperson
Cha Shih, Laura May Lung 史美倫
Female Directors
Cha Shih, Laura May Lung 史美倫
Fung, Anita Yuen Mei 馮婉眉
Leung Ko, Margaret May Yee 梁高美懿
10
( 4)
Bank of China Ltd
21.4%
10 ( Group 2 Created with Sketch. 4)
Bank of China Ltd
% Women
21.4%
Board Size
14
No. of Women
3
Stock Code
3988
Chairperson
Chen, Siqing 陳四清
Female Directors
Chao, Angela 趙安吉
Wang, Xiaoya 汪小亞
Xiao, Lihong 肖立紅
Analysis
The League Table provides a high-level snapshot of the overall ranking of company performance – as assessed by the percentage of women...
Analysis
Women on Boards League Table: HSI

The League Table provides a high-level snapshot of the overall ranking of company performance – as assessed by the percentage of women on their boards. We report some dramatic movement to the top ten in Q2 2019, particularly Hang Seng Band dropping from first to joint second position (due to an additional male appointment in March 2019); The Bank of China dropping from sixth to ninth; and Sino Land moving to 32nd from 45th  due to the loss of a female member of their board in February 2019.

Key Data (Hong Kong)

All-Male Boards

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019
Share
12 Companies with all-male boards
7 Companies which have never had female directors

Companies which have never had female directors

Company
Industry
China Resources Land Ltd
Properties
CNOOC Ltd
Energy
The Hong Kong and China Gas Co. Ltd
Utilities
Sunny Optical Technology (Group) Ltd
Industrials
Techtronic Industries Company Ltd.
Manufacturing
Tencent Holdings Ltd
Information Technology
WH Group Ltd (KY)
Consumer Goods
Analysis
The number of all-male boards in Hong Kong increased by two in the period January – 1 April 2019. Techtronic Industries Company joined...
Analysis
All-Male Boards

The number of all-male boards in Hong Kong increased by two in the period January – 1 April 2019. Techtronic Industries Company joined the HSI in Q1 2019 (and does not have any female representation on its board) and Sino Land Company Limited lost Alice Mo Lin Ip from its board of directors.

Key Data (Hong Kong)

New Appointments by Gender

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019
Share
0
0.0%
Women
14
100.0%
Men
Out of a total of14appointments
Analysis
Over the last twelve months, only six new female directors have been appointed to Hang Seng Index companies – the lowest since 2009,...
Analysis
New Appointments by Gender

Over the last twelve months, only six new female directors have been appointed to Hang Seng Index companies – the lowest since 2009, both in actual and percentage (6.8%) terms. During this same period, 82 men were appointed to HSI boards. This downward trend in female appointments is in sharp contrast to the previous year, when 17 female appointments were made, representing 18.7%, the highest rate ever.  


Unfortunately, there were no female directors appointed in Q1 of 2019. There were 14 appointments made overall across the HSI but all of them were to men.

Key Data (Hong Kong)

New Female Director Appointments

Data valid as of 1 Apr 2019
From 2 Jan - 1 Apr 2019 there were no new female appointments. 
Share
First time director on HSI board
First time appointed corporate director in Hong Kong
Analysis
Of the six female directors appointed in 2018, only four were new appointments (the remaining two were role changes: Leonie Ki from...
Analysis
New Female Director Appointments

Of the six female directors appointed in 2018, only four were new appointments (the remaining two were role changes: Leonie Ki from Executive Director to Non-Executive Director at New World Development; and Yang Huiyan from Country Garden Holdings, who was promoted from Vice-Chair to Co-Chair). Only one woman (Lai Hong Yee of Want Want China Holdings) was a brand-new appointment as she has not previously been appointed to any other Hong Kong listed corporate boards. This finding indicates that companies are reluctant to appoint women who have not had previous board experience, which further limits the expansion of the talent pipeline of senior women who could be considered for board roles.

It is important to ensure that the pipeline of female talent is not only nurtured from within (with companies supporting the advancement of women to senior positions), but also tapped when it comes to nominating board candidates. Companies should ensure that their pool of potential board members is meritocratic and diverse. Broad perspectives based on relevant experience are invaluable around the boardroom table in these VUCA times. The 30% Club Hong Kong, in partnership with The Women’s Foundation, has established the Boardroom series for Women Leaders which aims to tackle this perceived lack of female talent at the board level and offer opportunities for women to ensure their path to the boardroom is not hindered by a gendered disadvantage.


There are no new women to profile in this quarter as no female appointments were made.

Key Data (Hong Kong)

Progress by Geography

Data obtained from official sources
Share

Norway

Jan 2017
42.1 %

United Kingdom

Jun 2018
29.0 %

Australia

Oct 2018
28.4 %

Canada

Jul 2018
28.4 %

United States

May 2018
24.0 %

Malaysia

Q3 2018
23.2 %

New Zealand

Jun 2018
20.5 %

Singapore

Dec 2018
15.2 %

India

Mar 2018
14.0 %

Hong Kong

Jan 2019
13.9 %

Japan

Jul 2018
4.1 %
Analysis
There have been some small victories for countries around the globe. Most notably, Singapore and India have overtaken Hong Kong in the...
Analysis
Progress by Geography

There have been some small victories for countries around the globe. Most notably, Singapore and India have overtaken Hong Kong in the rankings for the first time, reporting 15.2% (Singapore) and 14.0% (India) women on their boards. Regionally, Malaysia reports the highest numbers, with 23.2% recorded. Both India and Malaysia have government quotas in place which may go some way to explaining their acceleration in recent years. Singapore, via the government-backed Council for Board Diversity*, has enacted a multi-pronged campaign involving naming-and-shaming, engaging with board decision makers, maintaining a list of female candidates, and showcasing through data the impact on corporate performance. Inspired by this galvanised action, vocal support from male champions at the board level has increased dramatically. All of these factors have led to rapid progress in Singapore, with female board appointments reaching a record high of 24.0% during 2018.

  • Previously named ‘Diversity Action Committee’ and starting in January 2019, its scope has expanded to also include statutory boards and non-profit organisations.
Analytical Summary
Our first quarterly update on the representation of women on Hong Kong’s boards has painted a bleak picture. What has become clear is that the situation in Hong Kong is precarious: the movement of a few women and the appointment of some men drastically alters the landscape.
Hong Kong’s gender diversity metrics are not in a stable position with regard to women on boards. With no positive movement at all across any of our data points we must reiterate our call for a concerted effort on the part of companies, governments, regulators, investors, and other stakeholders to ensure that women are given equal opportunity to participate and serve in leadership roles in the boardroom and executive suite. This begins with a commitment to change and a bold admission from Hong Kong companies that gender diversity is good for business, and ultimately good for Hong Kong.

Our full recommendations for increasing women’s representation on Hong Kong boards can be found in our Call to Action.