KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 20): Malayan Banking Berhad (Maybank)’s investment banking arm Maybank Kim Eng Group chief executive officer (CEO) Ami Moris has been appointed as chairperson of the 30% Club Malaysia.
In this role, Ami will lead the drive in advancing women leaders on corporate boards and management teams in Malaysia, said 30% Club Malaysia in a statement on Wednesday.
The 30% Club Malaysia is part of a global campaign led by Chairs and CEOs taking action to increase diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) at board and senior management levels
Founding chair Tan Sri Zarinah Anwar said 30% Club Malaysia has been on a DEI journey with key stakeholders to increase the representation of women on the boards and management of Malaysian public-listed companies (PLCs) since its establishment in 2015.
“Moving forward, in order to sustain and continue our mission, the 30% Club Malaysia has adopted the Global 30% Club model which calls for corporations to play a more integral part in driving the campaign’s mission and goals by assuming a corporate sponsor position and taking on the Club Chair role on a two-year rotational basis,” she said.
Zarinah noted the corporate sponsor will appoint a leader from among its own senior talent to be the chair of the 30% Club and provide secretariat support to the Club.
“I am delighted to announce that Ami Moris joins the 30% Club Malaysia as Chairman effective today [Wednesday]. In Ami, I know that we have a strong advocate and influential business leader who embodies the Club’s mission of promoting gender balance at boards and senior management levels and promoting a culture of inclusiveness.
“There is much more to do to achieve our aspirations. Maybank coming on board as a corporate sponsor marks a new chapter in our journey, reinforces the important role local corporations play in enhancing DEI, and accelerating the achievement of the targets set,” she said.
30% Club Malaysia incoming chair Ami said the case for diversity on boards and senior management teams is a business case and the facts are on its side.
“Data now shows that companies with at least one-third women board composition correlates with a 38% higher median return on equity (ROE), naturally attracting better and larger investors.
“Our mission is to close the gap to 30% and start working with the next 100 listed companies as capital market leaders,” she noted.
Ami added that Malaysia needs to be well-positioned to promote the investability of its leading listed companies to maintain ASEAN leadership with an ESG-first (environmental, social, governance) mindset moving global allocation of capital towards quality, diverse and inclusive companies.
According to 30% Club Malaysia, data as at July 1 shows women representation on the boards of the Top 100 Malaysian PLCs stands at 25.5%, 4.5 percentage points away from reaching the 30% pivotal point.
In addition, as of July 1 women occupied 17% of total board seats of companies listed on Bursa Malaysia, an increase of 6.3 percentage points from 2015. Currently, there are still four all-male boards in the Top 100 PLCs, the statement noted.
As part of its DEI efforts at board levels, in 2017, the 30% Club Malaysia in collaboration with PwC Malaysia established the Board Mentoring Scheme (BMS). To date, 68 women have successfully undertaken this nine-month mentoring scheme and 33% of them have already been appointed to boards of companies.
Meanwhile, Maybank chairman Tan Sri Zamzamzairani Mohd Isa said becoming a corporate sponsor is a natural fit for Maybank given that it actively promotes DEI throughout all levels of the organisation as it is integral to its mission, core values and business strategy.
“Not only do we practise DEI, we also advocate it through our own Diversity Ally programme and e-learnings.
“As businesses change and adapt to new growth opportunities post Covid-19 pandemic, there is a need for the best and brightest minds at the board and senior leadership levels of Malaysian listed companies to help shape sustainable, socially responsible and ethical organisations, as identified under the recently announced PLC Transformation Programme.
“Only by doing so can we create a collectively better future that embeds sustainability as a purpose, driven by shared values,” he said.
With this appointment, founding chairs Zarinah and Tan Sri Jeffrey Cheah, as well as founding executives Datuk Abdul Aziz Abu Bakar and Anne Abraham will move into advisory roles.