Shareholders who put loud pressure on board members and supervisory board members usually have testosterone in their blood: Guys like Guy Wyser-Pratte, Paul Singer (Elliott) and Daniel Loeb (Third Point), who radiate a subliminal aggression, dominate the scene of activist investors. Women of similar calibre are not yet in sight, and men also dominate among traditional investors: A recent survey by KPMG with the Fund Women Network shows that the proportion of women in the management ranks of the fund companies is just 16 percent. From our point of view, this raises two questions.
Diversity: How well-balanced are judgments about board members and supervisory board members?
First: How credible can investors urge board members and supervisory board members to be more diverse? And secondly: Are the opinions that fund companies form about corporate strategies and managers balanced – or do they suffer from exactly the one-sided, male-dominated perspective that they accuse many bodies of? After all, the proportion of women among fund providers has risen by five percentage points over the past three years. In view of the low level, however, it is still necessary to question their judgments critically. Not only with activists who pursue their own interests anyway – but also with those investors who participate in the long term and therefore like to insist on congruence of interests.