The Board comprises the Chairman, two Executive Directors and two three Non-Executive Directors. The Non-Executive Directors are considered to be independent, provide a solid foundation for good corporate governance for the Group, and ensure that no individual or group dominates the Board’s decision-making process. The Non-Executive Directors are independent of management. Each Non-Executive Director continues to demonstrate that they have sufficient time to devote to the Company’s business.
The Non-Executive Directors constructively challenge and assist in developing the strategy of the Group using their experience and knowledge of acquisition targets and fundraising. They scrutinise the performance of management against the Group’s objectives and also monitor the reporting of performance. The Board is provided with regular and timely information on the financial performance of the Group as a whole, together with reports on trading matters, markets and other relevant matters.
There are clearly defined roles for the Chairman and Chief Executive. The Chairman is responsible for leadership of the Board, ensuring effectiveness of the Board in all aspects, conducting Board meetings and the effective and timely communication of information to shareholders. The Chairman is able to provide advice, counsel and support to the Chief Executive. The Chief Executive has direct charge of the Group’s day-to-day activities and sets the operating plans and budgets required to deliver the agreed strategy. The Chief Executive is also responsible for ensuring that the Group has in place appropriate risk management and control mechanisms.
The Board is collectively responsible for the performance of the Group and is responsible to shareholders for proper management of the Group.
The Board has a formal schedule of matters specifically reserved to it for decisions including the approval of annual and interim results and recommendation of dividends, approval of annual budgets, approval of larger capital expenditure and investment proposals, review of the overall system of internal control and risk management and review of corporate governance arrangements. Other responsibilities are delegated to the Board Committees, being the Audit, Remuneration and Nominations committees, which operate within clearly defined terms of reference, and which report back to the Board.
Relevant papers are distributed to members in advance of Board and Committee meetings. Directors’ knowledge and understanding of the Group is enhanced by visits to the operations and by receiving presentations by senior management on the results and strategies of the business units. Directors may take independent professional advice on any matter at the Company’s expense if they deem it necessary in order to carry out their responsibilities. The Company has secured appropriate insurance cover for Directors and Officers.
The following committees deal with specific aspects of the Group’s affairs.
In determining the remuneration packages, the Remuneration Committee may seek the view of the other Board members. The Committee consults with the Chief Executive on matters relating to the performance and remuneration of other senior executives within the Group.
The Audit Committee meets not less than twice annually and more frequently if required.
The Board considers that each member of the Audit Committee has recent and relevant financial experience and an understanding of accounting and financial issues relevant to the industries in which SDI Group operates. The Committee provides a forum for reporting by the Group’s external auditors. Meetings are also attended by executives at the invitation of the Committee.
The Audit Committee is responsible for reviewing a wide range of matters including the half year and annual accounts before their submission to the Board, and monitoring the controls which are in force to ensure integrity of the information reported to shareholders. The Audit Committee makes recommendations to the Board on the appointment and responsibilities of external auditors and on their remuneration both for audit and non-audit work, and discusses the nature, scope and results of the audit with external auditors.
The Committee is also responsible for monitoring the cost effectiveness, independence and objectivity of Grant Thornton UK LLP, the external auditor, and agreeing the level of remuneration and extent of non-audit services.
The committee considers the performance and effectiveness of the Board and its Directors; whether Directors should be put forward for re-election at the Annual General Meeting; to consider succession planning for Directors and other senior executives; and to identify and nominate for the approval of the Board candidates to fill Board vacancies as and when they arise.