The Group has firmly established a clear set of policies to ascertain fairness in all operations and ensure that all activities are carried out in the best interest of its shareholders.
Corporate Governance Report
(Extracted from 2017 Annual Report dated 27 March 2018)
Corporate Governance Practices
The board of directors (“Board” or “Directors”) of Shun Tak Holdings Limited (the “Company”) is committed to principles of good corporate governance standards and procedures. This report describes the Company’s efforts to apply the principles and comply with the provisions in the Corporate Governance Code (the “CG Code”) as set out in Appendix 14 of the Rules Governing the Listing of Securities (the “Listing Rules”) on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (the “Stock Exchange”).
The Company is committed to maintaining high standards of corporate governance. Since Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Benchmark Index was launched in 2011, the Company has been one of its constituent stocks. Hang Seng Corporate Sustainability Benchmark Index is Asia’s first benchmark series that tracks the performance of leading companies in corporate sustainability, focusing on environmental, social and corporate governance aspects. Hong Kong Quality Assurance Agency (“HKQAA”), the project partner with Hang Seng Indexes Company Limited since 2014, awarded the Company an “AA” grade in recognition of the Company’s sustainability achievement. HKQAA also accredited the Company with HKQAA CSR Plus Mark in acknowledgment of the Company’s satisfactory sustainability performance.
The Listing Rules require every listed company to report how it applies the principles in the CG Code and confirm that it complies with such provisions, or provide an explanation if it does not. The Board periodically reviews the Company’s practices to ensure compliance with increasingly stringent requirements and to meet rising expectations of its shareholders (“Shareholders”). A corporate governance policy (the “CG Policy”) outlining the Company’s governance framework and practices was adopted by the Board in 2012 and updated in August 2017.
The Board is of the opinion that the Company has complied with the CG Code provisions throughout the year ended 31 December 2017, except for:
Code provision E.1.2 which requires the chairman of the Board to attend the annual general meeting (“AGM”). The former Group Executive Chairman was absent from the Company’s AGM held on 23 June 2017 (“2017 AGM”) due to health reasons. The Managing Director who was appointed as the Group Executive Chairman after the conclusion of the 2017 AGM (also Chairman of the executive committee (“Executive Committee”)), the Deputy Managing Director and other Directors, together with the chairmen/members of the audit committee (“Audit Committee”), nomination committee (“Nomination Committee”), remuneration committee (“Remuneration Committee”) and Executive Committee, were present during the meeting to answer any Shareholders’ questions regarding activities of the Company and its Board committees (the “Board Committee”); and
Code provision A.2.1 which requires the roles of chairman and chief executive to be separate and not to be performed by the same individual. The Board is of the view that there is adequate balance of power and authority in place as all major decisions have been made in discussion among Board members and appropriate Board Committees. In addition, there are four independent non-executive Directors (“INEDs”) on the Board offering their experiences, expertise, independent advice and views to the Board’s affairs from different perspectives. Therefore, it is in the best interest of the Company that Ms. Pansy Ho, with her in-depth knowledge in the businesses and extensive experience of the operations of the Company and its subsidiaries (the “Group”), shall assume her dual capacity as the Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director.
Model Code for Securities Transactions
Code provision A.6.4 requires directors to comply with the Model Code for Securities Transactions by Directors of Listed Issuers in Appendix 10 of the Listing Rules (the “Model Code”).
The Model Code was adopted by the Company as its own code of conduct for Directors’ securities transactions. All Directors expressly confirmed that they had fully complied with the Model Code during the year ended 31 December 2017.
The key principles of good governance require the Company to have an effective Board which is collectively responsible for its success, setting its values and enhancing Shareholders’ value. Non-executive Directors (“NEDs”) have particular responsibilities to oversee the Company’s development, scrutinise its management performance, and advise on critical business issues. The Board is satisfied that it has met these requirements.
The Company has a balanced Board of Executive Directors and NEDs so that no individual or small group can dominate its decision-making process. To help the Board perform its duties and make decisions on the Company’s affairs, Board Committees (including Remuneration Committee, Nomination Committee, Executive Committee and Audit Committee) have been established under the Company’s Articles of Association (“Articles”). Other Board Committees may be formed from time to time. Further details about Board Committees are discussed in the latter part of this report.
Changes in members of the Board and Board Committees during the year ended 31 December 2017 and up to the date of this report are set out below:
Mr. Kevin Yip was appointed member of the Audit Committee, effective from 11 January 2017;
Dr. Stanley Ho retired as the Group Executive Chairman and Executive Director with effect from the conclusion of the 2017 AGM on 23 June 2017. The Board honored Dr. Ho with the title of Chairman Emeritus of the Company following his retirement; and
Ms. Pansy Ho, the Managing Director, was appointed Group Executive Chairman, effective from the conclusion of the 2017 AGM on 23 June 2017.
As at the date of this report, the Board has 9 members and its composition is as follows:-
Brief biographies of Directors and relationship amongst them are set out in “Management Profile” in this annual report.
The Company has four INEDs representing more than one-third of the Board, of which two possess professional accounting qualifications. The Company received a confirmation from each of the INEDs confirming independence under Rule 3.13 of the Listing Rules. The Nomination Committee is of the view that all INEDs are independent under the Listing Rules criteria.
Ms. Pansy Ho, as the Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director of the Company, is mainly responsible for Board leadership and overall performance of the Group.
The Board is responsible for overseeing the Group’s strategic development, setting appropriate policies to manage risks in pursuit of the Group’s strategic objectives, and scrutinising operational and financial performance.
Management is delegated by the Board and is principally responsible for the Group’s day-to-day operations. The Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director together with Deputy Managing Director, working with other Executive Directors and executive management team, are responsible for managing the Group’s business; formulating policies for Board consideration; carrying out strategies adopted by the Board; making recommendations on strategic planning, operating plans, major projects and business proposals; and assuming full accountability to the Board for the Group’s operations. The Executive Directors conduct regular meetings with the management of the Group and associated companies during which operational issues and financial performance are reviewed. The Executive Directors regularly report to the Board and on an ad hoc basis.
In 2013, the Board adopted a board diversity policy (the “Board Diversity Policy”) which sets out the approach to achieve a diverse Board in order to enhance performance quality. “Diversity” would be considered from various aspects, including gender, age, cultural and educational background, professional experience, skills, knowledge and length of service, etc. Board appointments are based on meritocracy and candidates will be assessed against objective criteria, with due regard for the benefits of diversity. The Nomination Committee will monitor the implementation of the Board Diversity Policy and, for the purpose of ensuring its effectiveness, the Nomination Committee will review this Board Diversity Policy and recommend any revisions to the Board for consideration and approval, when necessary.
Board diversity is shown below. Directors’ biographical details are set out in “Management Profile” in this annual report.
To ensure that the Board works effectively and perform its responsibilities, its members are provided with monthly updates on Company performance, financial position and prospects. Directors have full and timely access to relevant information and are properly briefed on issues considered at Board meetings. The duty of preparing the meeting agenda is delegated to the company secretary (the “Company Secretary”). Each Director may request inclusion of items on the agenda.
To make informed decisions, Directors are given information packages with explanation and analysis of the agenda items not less than three days before a meeting. The Company Secretary keeps Directors informed of corporate governance issues and regulatory changes, and ensures that Board procedures follow the CG Code and relevant legal requirements. The Board is provided with sufficient resources to perform its duties and, if required, an individual Director may engage independent professional advisers at the Company’s expenses to provide advice on specific matters.
If a Director has a conflict of interest in any matter under Board consideration, such matter will be dealt with by a physical Board meeting instead of a written resolution. Such Director shall abstain from voting, and not be counted in the quorum, for any resolution in which he or she has a material interest.
An open atmosphere exists for Directors to contribute alternative views at meetings and major decisions are taken after full discussion. Minutes of Board and Board Committee meetings are recorded in detail with draft minutes circulated for comment before approval by Directors and Board Committee members, respectively. Minutes and written resolutions of the Board and Board Committees are kept by the Company Secretary and open for inspection by Directors. Such minutes and written resolutions are circulated to Directors at regular Board meetings.
The Company has appropriate directors’ and officers’ liability insurance for legal action against Directors.
Appointments and Re-election of Directors
All INEDs are appointed for a specific term of three years. Under the Articles, every Director, including those appointed for a specific term, is subject to retirement by rotation at least once every three years at the Company’s AGM. Any Director appointed by the Board is subject to re-election by Shareholders at the next AGM following his or her appointment. Directors who are subject to retirement and re-election at the forthcoming AGM are set out in “Report of the Directors” in this annual report.
Directors’ Induction, Development and Training
Each newly-appointed Director is offered training on the Company’s key areas of business operations and practices. Newly-appointed Directors are offered orientation materials that set out the duties and responsibilities of directors under the Listing Rules and relevant ordinances and regulations. Directors are provided with “A Guide on Directors’ Duties” issued by the Hong Kong Companies Registry and “Guidelines for Directors” issued by Hong Kong Institute of Directors (“HKIoD”) which set out the general principles of directors’ duties. All INEDs are given “Guide for Independent Non-Executive Directors” issued by HKIoD.
The Company encourages Directors to participate in continuing professional training and development courses to enhance their relevant knowledge and skills. The Company also updates Directors on the latest development of Listing Rules and applicable laws and regulations to facilitate awareness and ensure compliance. The Executive Committee is responsible for reviewing training and continuous professional developments of Directors and senior management. During the year, the Company had provided trainings to Directors on updates of laws and regulations covering the topics of duties of directors and company secretary and the role and functions of board committees, risk management and internal control, Environmental, Social and Governance Reporting, etc.
According to training records provided by Directors, a summary of their training during the year is shown below:
|Directors||Type of Trainings|
|Former Group Executive Chairman|
|Dr. Stanley Ho (retired on 23 June 2017)||A|
|Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director|
|Ms. Pansy Ho||A, B, C|
|Independent Non-Executive Directors|
|Mr. Norman Ho||A, B, C|
|Mr. Charles Ho||A, B|
|Mr. Michael Wu||A|
|Mr. Kevin Yip||A, C|
|Deputy Managing Director|
|Ms. Daisy Ho||A|
|Ms. Maisy Ho||A, C|
|Mr. David Shum||A|
|Mr. Rogier Verhoeven||A|
|A:||Reading materials and/or attending briefing/training session provided/organised by the Company in relation to updates of Listing Rules, latest development of the rules, regulations and corporate governance|
|B:||Reading materials and/or attending training sessions provided/organised by other corporations relating to rules and regulations, economy, general business and corporate governance|
|C:||Attending seminar and/or conference and/or forum|
Board and Board Committee Meetings
Regular Board meetings are held at least four times every year at approximately quarterly intervals. Additional Board meetings are held if required. During the year ended 31 December 2017, the Board held five meetings, and the Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director held a meeting with INEDs without the presence of the Executive Directors.
Attendance by Directors at meetings of the Board, Audit Committee, Remuneration Committee, Nomination Committee, Annual General Meeting and General Meeting during the year is shown below:
|Name of Director||Board||
|Remuneration Committee||Nomination Committee||
Annual General Meeting
|(Number of Meetings Attended/Entitled to Attend)|
|Former Group Executive Chairman|
|Dr. Stanley Ho (Note 1)||0/3||n/a||n/a||n/a||0/1||0/1|
|Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director|
|Ms. Pansy Ho (Note 2)||5/5||n/a||1/1||1/1||1/1||1/1|
|Independent Non-Executive Directors|
|Mr. Norman Ho||5/5||3/3||1/1||1/1||1/1||1/1|
|Mr. Charles Ho||4/5||n/a||1/1||1/1||0/1||0/1|
|Mr. Michael Ng||5/5||3/3||1/1||1/1||1/1||1/1|
|Mr. Kevin Yip||4/5||2/3||n/a||n/a||1/1||1/1|
|Deputy Managing Director|
|Ms. Pansy Ho||5/5||n/a||1/1||1/1||1/1||1/1|
|Ms. Maisy Ho||5/5||n/a||n/a||n/a||1/1||0/1|
|Mr. David Shum||5/5||n/a||n/a||n/a||1/1||1/1|
|Mr. Rogier Verhoeven||5/5||n/a||n/a||n/a||1/1||1/1|
|Note 1:||Dr. Stanley Ho was unable to attend meetings due to health reasons. He retired as the Group Executive Chairman and Executive Director with effect from the conclusion of the 2017 AGM on 23 June 2017.|
|Note 2:||Ms. Pansy Ho, the Managing Director, was appointed Group Executive Chairman, effective from the conclusion of the 2017 AGM on 23 June 2017.|
|Note 3:||Representatives of the external auditor were invited to participate in two Audit Committee meetings held in March and August 2017, and attended the Annual General Meeting and General Meeting.|
The Board has established four Board Committees, namely the Remuneration Committee, Nomination Committee, Executive Committee and Audit Committee, to assist it in carrying out its responsibilities.
The current composition of the Board Committees is as follows:
|Note:||Mr. Kevin Yip was appointed member of the Audit Committee on 11 January 2017.|
Each of the Remuneration Committee, Nomination Committee, Executive Committee and Audit Committee has defined duties and responsibilities set out in its terms of reference which are no less exacting than those in the CG Code. Such terms are regularly reviewed and updated in response to regulatory changes or Board direction. Other Board Committees for dealing with ad hoc matters when necessary are delegated with specific duties and authorities by the Board. All Board Committees are provided with sufficient resources to perform their duties.
The Remuneration Committee consists of five members, namely, Mr. Norman Ho, Mr. Charles Ho and Mr. Michael Wu (all being INEDs), Ms. Pansy Ho (Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director) and Ms. Daisy Ho (Deputy Managing Director). Mr. Michael Wu is the chairman of the Remuneration Committee.
The principal role of the Remuneration Committee is to set the Company’s remuneration and incentive policy as a whole, and review and approve remuneration proposals for Executive Directors and senior management. The emoluments of the Directors, including basic salary and performance bonus, are based on each Director’s skills, knowledge and involvement in the Company’s affairs, the Company’s performance and profitability, remuneration benchmark in the industry and prevailing market conditions. No Director has taken part in setting his or her own remuneration.
According to its terms of reference (a copy of which is posted on the websites of the Company and the Stock Exchange), the Remuneration Committee shall meet at least once a year. Additional meetings may be held as required. Decisions may also be made by circulation of written resolutions accompanied by explanatory materials. During the year ended 31 December 2017, one Remuneration Committee meeting was held, wherein the Remuneration Committee reviewed, made recommendation on INEDs’ remuneration packages to the Board, approved the remuneration packages for Executive Directors, senior management and staff; and reviewed the remuneration policy adopted by the Company (the “Remuneration Policy”).
The Remuneration Policy establishes a formal and transparent procedure for determining remuneration of Directors and senior management. To achieve the Company’s corporate goals and objectives, packages offered by the Group are competitive, adequate (but not excessive), in line with current market practices and able to attract, retain, motivate and reward Directors and senior management. To ensure that the Remuneration Policy is effective, the Remuneration Committee will review the policy and recommend revisions to the Board when necessary. The Remuneration Policy was updated in December 2017.
Directors’ interests in the Company’s shares, underlying shares and debentures, along with interests in contracts, are set out in “Report of the Directors”. Directors’ emoluments are set out in “Notes to the Financial Statements” in this annual report.
The Nomination Committee consists of five members, namely, Mr. Norman Ho, Mr. Charles Ho and Mr. Michael Wu (all being INEDs), Ms. Pansy Ho (Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director) and Ms. Daisy Ho (Deputy Managing Director). Mr. Charles Ho is the chairman of the Nomination Committee.
The Nomination Committee is responsible for (i) formulating policy and making recommendations to the Board on nomination and appointment of Directors and the Board’s succession planning; and (ii) monitoring the implementation of the Board Diversity Policy and reviewing the same and recommending any revision to the Board for consideration. The Nomination Committee develops selection procedures for candidates and will consider different criteria including appropriate professional knowledge, industry experience, and the standards set forth in Rules 3.08 and 3.09 of the Listing Rules. It reviews the structure, size and composition of the Board annually to ensure that it has balanced skills and expertise to provide effective leadership to the Company. It assesses the independence of INEDs under the criteria in Rule 3.13 of the Listing Rules.
According to its terms of reference (a copy of which is posted on the websites of the Company and the Stock Exchange), the Nomination Committee shall meet as required by its work. Decision may also be made by circulation of written resolutions accompanied by explanatory materials. During the year ended 31 December 2017, one Nomination Committee meeting was held at which the Nomination Committee had reviewed the structure, size, composition and diversity of the Board; the retirement and appointment of the Group Executive Chairman; award of Chairman Emeritus; the Board Diversity Policy; the Directors’ involvement in the Company’s affairs; and the independence of INEDs; and made recommendations to the Board for putting forward Directors, who were subject to retirement by rotation, for re-appointment at 2017 AGM.
The Executive Committee consists of five members, namely, Ms. Pansy Ho (Group Executive Chairman and Managing Director), Ms. Daisy Ho (Deputy Managing Director), Ms. Maisy Ho, Mr. David Shum and Mr. Rogier Verhoeven. Ms. Pansy Ho is the chairman of the Executive Committee. The duties and responsibilities of the Executive Committee are set out in its terms of reference. Meetings are held as required by its work.
For more efficient operation of the Board, the Executive Committee was established to make recommendations on the strategic aims, objectives and priorities of the Company and to consider and approve matters relating to the Group’s day-to-day operations.
The Executive Committee was delegated by the Board to perform corporate governance functions set out in code provision D.3.1 including (i) developing and reviewing the Company’s policies and practices on corporate governance and making recommendations to the Board; (ii) reviewing and monitoring training and professional development of Directors and senior management; (iii) reviewing and monitoring the Company’s policies and practices on compliance with legal and regulatory requirements; (iv) developing, reviewing and monitoring the code of conduct and compliance manual applicable to employees and Directors; and (v) reviewing compliance with the Code and disclosure in the corporate governance report. As at the date of this report, the Executive Committee has reviewed (a) the Company’s CG Policy; (b) the Company’s compliance with the CG Code and its disclosure in this report; and (c) Directors’ training records.
In light of code provision C.2 of the CG Code, the Executive Committee was delegated by the Board to (i) assist the Board in evaluating and determining the nature and extent of risks the Board is willing to take to achieve the Group’s strategic objectives; and (ii) oversee management in the design, implementation and ongoing monitoring of risk management and internal control systems and to ensure their appropriateness and effectiveness.
To oversee the Group’s strategies and development of corporate sustainability, the Executive Committee was delegated by the Board to establish a sustainability steering committee (the “Sustainability Steering Committee”). After its establishment, the Sustainability Steering Committee created a sustainability policy to demonstrate the Company’s commitment to sustainable business growth and development through adoption of sound environmental, social and governance approaches. The policy was adopted by the Executive Committee in 2014 and the Company has published its annual sustainability reports since then.
The Audit Committee consists of three members, namely, Mr. Norman Ho, Mr. Michael Wu and Mr. Kevin Yip, all being INEDs. Mr. Norman Ho is the chairman of the Audit Committee and Mr. Kevin Yip was appointed member of Audit Committee on 11 January 2017. The Board is satisfied that the Audit Committee members collectively possess adequate financial experience to properly perform its duties and responsibilities. Mr. Norman Ho and Mr. Michael Wu hold professional accounting qualifications required by Rule 3.10(2) of the Listing Rules, details of which are set out in their biographies in “Management Profile” in this annual report.
The Audit Committee’s primary responsibilities include reviewing the Company’s financial reports, risk management and internal control systems, and effectiveness and objectivity of the audit process.
According to its terms of reference (a copy of which is posted on the websites of the Company and the Stock Exchange), the Audit Committee shall meet at least twice a year. Decision may be made by circulating written resolutions accompanied by explanatory materials. During the year ended 31 December 2017, three Audit Committee meetings were held to review, inter alia, (i) the Company’s interim and year-end financial reports, particularly judgemental areas before submission to the Board; (ii) the internal audit programme and the effectiveness of the internal audit function (including audit progress, findings and management’s responses); (iii) the adequacy and effectiveness of the risk management and internal control systems (including the risk management processes, the principal risks identified and risk mitigation controls); (iv) PricewaterhouseCoopers’ (“PwC”) confirmation of independence, its reports for the Audit Committee and management’s letter of representation; (v) the Group’s whistleblowing policy (the “Whistleblowing Policy”); and considered the annual audit and non-audit services fees for the year ended 31 December 2016 and recommended the re-appointment of Company’s external auditor.
The Audit Committee also reviewed the continuing connected transactions; reviewed and approved PwC’s terms of engagement as the Company’s external auditor for the year ended 31 December 2017, and its further engagement to (a) review the Company’s preliminary results announcement for the year ended 31 December 2017; and (b) report on continuing connected transactions as disclosed in this annual report. As at the date of this report, the Audit Committee also approved the annual audit and non-audit services fees for year ended 31 December 2017, and recommended the re-appointment of PwC (the retiring auditor at the forthcoming AGM) as the Company’s external auditor.
With the introduction of the Whistleblowing Policy since December 2011 and its update in August 2017, employees are provided with a channel and guideline to report serious misconduct, malpractice or impropriety concerns internally without fear of reprisal. The Audit Committee was delegated with the overall responsibility for monitoring and reviewing the effectiveness of the Whistleblowing Policy.
For the year ended 31 December 2017, the fees paid/payable by the Group to PwC in respect of the audit and non-audit services provided by them amounted to approximately HK$10.1 million and HK$4.1 million respectively, while the audit and non-audit fees paid/payable by the Group to other auditors were HK$0.8 million and HK$0.5 million respectively. The non-audit services mainly included interim review, taxation, due diligence and other services.
Accountability and Audit
The Directors acknowledge their responsibility for preparing for each financial year financial statements which give a true and fair view of the state of affairs of the Company and the Group; and the Group’s profit and cash flow in accordance with Hong Kong Financial Reporting Standards, the Hong Kong Companies Ordinance and the Listing Rules. In preparing financial statements for the year ended 31 December 2017, the Directors have selected suitable accounting policies and applied them consistently. The Directors also made judgements and estimates that are prudent and reasonable and prepared the financial statements on a going concern basis. The Company announced its interim and annual results in a timely manner following the relevant periods as required by the Listing Rules.
The statement from the Company’s external auditor about the auditor’s responsibilities for the audit of the Company’s financial statements is set out in “Independent Auditor’s Report” in this annual report.
Internal Control and Risk Management
Responsibilities of the Board
The Board has overall responsibility for ensuring that appropriate and effective risk management and internal control systems are established and maintained. These systems have been designed to ensure (i) efficiency of operations; (ii) proper identification and management of risks relating to the achievement of strategic objectives; (iii) safeguarding of assets; (iv) proper maintenance of financial and accounting records to provide reliable information for financial and management reporting; and (v) compliance with relevant legislation and regulations. Such systems are aimed at mitigating risks faced by the Group to an acceptable level, but not eliminating all risks. Hence, such systems can only provide reasonable but not absolute assurance that there will not be any material misstatement in the financial information and any financial loss or fraud.
Main features of the risk management and internal control systems
The Board has established a framework to maintain appropriate and effective risk management and internal controls systems, which includes the following key procedures (i) setting core values and beliefs which form the basis of the Group’s overall risk philosophy; (ii) evaluating and determining the nature and extent of risks that the Group is willing to take in achieving its strategic objectives; (iii) defining a management structure with clear lines of responsibility and authority limits which hold individuals accountable for their risk management and internal control responsibilities; (iv) adopting an organisational structure which provides necessary information flow for risk analysis and management decision-making; (v) imposing budgetary and management accounting controls to efficiently allocate resources and provide timely financial and operational performance indicators; (vi) ensuring effective financial reporting controls to timely record complete and accurate accounting and management information; (vii) overseeing Executive Committee’s establishment of policies and procedures on risk management, implementation of risk mitigation measures and reviewing of risk management results; and (viii) through the Audit Committee, ensuring that appropriate risk management and internal control procedures are in place and functioning effectively.
The process used to identify, evaluate and manage risks
The Executive Committee assists the Board in designing, implementing and monitoring risk management and internal control systems. Responsibility resides at all levels within the Group, from the Board down to heads of business and supporting units as well as the general staff. Risk management is integrated into the Group’s culture and day-to-day activities. Policies and procedures on risk management are established to ensure a consistent approach to identify and address risks in business processes. Each unit maintains a risk register to record all identified risks (including any emerging risks) by taking into account various external and internal factors including economic, financial, political, technological, environmental and social, health and safety, legislation and regulations, operational, processing and execution as well as the Group’s strategies and objectives and stakeholders’ expectations. A formal assessment is conducted to rank each of the identified risk. The risk ratings are determined based on the likelihood of a risk occurring and the potential impact or consequences.
Risk treatment options and mitigation controls are identified, determined, implemented and reviewed. Risk management results are reported to the Executive Committee and the Audit Committee twice a year.
Risk Management Process
A description of the Group’s principal risk factors is shown on pages 52 to 54 of this annual report.
Ongoing and annual review
Through the Audit Committee, the Board is responsible for continuous review of the effectiveness of the Group’s risk management and internal control systems which include financial, operational, compliance and risk management controls. Such process includes a self-assessment from the head of each business or supporting unit and internal audit reviews conducted by the Group Internal Audit Department (“GIAD”).
Control self-assessment from the Head of each Business or Supporting Unit
On an annual basis, the head of each business or supporting unit signs a confirmation to the Board that he/she has self-assessed the risk management and internal control systems of their operations against the criteria for effective internal control and risk management in the Internal Control - Integrated Framework issued by the Committee of Sponsoring Organisations of the Treadway Commission (the “COSO Framework”) and confirms that such systems are operating effectively.
The Executive Committee also conducts an annual review of the Group’s risk management and internal control systems with reference to the criteria in the COSO Framework and confirms to the Board that they are adequate and are operating effectively.
Internal audit reviews conducted by GIAD
The GIAD reports to the Audit Committee and has unrestricted access to the Group’s records and personnel. To ensure systematic coverage of all auditable areas and effective deployment of resources, a four-year strategic audit plan adopting a risk ranking methodology has been formulated. This plan is revised annually to reflect organisational changes and new business development and is submitted for the Audit Committee’s approval. Ad-hoc reviews will also be conducted of concern identified by the Audit Committee and management.
The GIAD reviews risk management and internal controls by (i) evaluating the control environment and risk identification and assessment processes; (ii) assessing the adequacy of risk response measures and internal controls; and (iii) testing the implementation of such measures and functioning of key controls through audit sampling.
The Audit Committee, supported by GIAD, also reviews the adequacy of resources, qualifications, experiences and training requirements of staff responsible for accounting, financial reporting, treasury, financial analysis and internal audit functions. During each audit, staff qualifications and experience as well as manpower plans and training budgets are reviewed to ensure sufficient competent staff to maintain effective risk management and internal control systems. An audit report incorporating control deficiencies and management’s rectification plans is issued for each internal audit.
The GIAD reports quarterly to the Audit Committee on the results of its assessment of risk management and internal control systems and status of implementation of follow-up actions on control deficiencies. In addition, the head of GIAD attends Audit Committee meetings twice a year to report its progress.
For the year under review, the Board considers the risk management and internal control systems of the Group to be adequate and effective and the Company has complied with the risk management and internal control code provisions set out in the CG Code.
Inside Information Policy
The Company adopted a policy and procedure on disclosure of inside information (the “Inside Information Policy”) setting out the Group’s procedure in handling such information to ensure its equal and timely dissemination to comply with the requirements under Part XIVA of the Securities and Futures Ordinance and the Listing Rules. The Executive Committee was delegated by the Board to monitor the Inside Information Policy and assess the nature and materiality of relevant information and determine the appropriate actions. In addition, an Inside Information Taskforce has been set up to assist the Executive Committee on disclosure matters. The Group will provide appropriate training to officers and employees likely to be in possession of inside information.
Proactive Investor Relations
The Company aims to maintain an ongoing dialogue and communication with its Shareholders. It is the Board’s responsibility to ensure that satisfactory dialogue takes place. The Board adopted a shareholder communication policy setting out the Company’s principles in relation to Shareholders’ communication, with the objective to ensure direct, open and timely communications. The primary channel between the Company and Shareholders is the publication of interim reports, annual reports, circulars and notices to Shareholders. The Company’s share registrar, Computershare Hong Kong Investor Services Limited (the “Share Registrar”), serves Shareholders on all share registration matters. General meetings further provide the forum and opportunity for Shareholders to exchange views directly with the Board members.
The Company continues its proactive policy to promote investor relations by regular meetings with institutional investors and research analysts. Our Investor Relations Department maintains open communications with the investment community. To ensure investors have an informed understanding of the Company’s strategies, operations and management, our management engages in proactive investor relation activities. These include participating in regular one-on-one meetings, investor conferences and international non-deal roadshows.
The Company maintains a corporate website (www.shuntakgroup.com) which provides Shareholders, investors and the public with updated information on the Group’s activities and development. Corporate information on the Group’s businesses is distributed by emails to the registered mailing list which can be joined by interested parties on the Company’s website. The Company Secretary and the Investor Relations Department serve as the major channels of communication between Directors, Shareholders, investors and the public. The public is encouraged to contact the Group as appropriate.
Shareholders may at any time send their enquiries to the Board, addressed to the Company Secretarial Department or Investor Relations Department with contact details set out below:
Penthouse 39th Floor, West Tower, Shun Tak Centre
200 Connaught Road Central
|Telephone||:||(852) 2859 3111|
|Facsimile||:||(852) 2857 7181|
In relation to enquiries on the shareholding matters of the Company, Shareholders could send enquiries to the Share Registrar with their contact details set out below:
Shops 1712-1716, 17th Floor, Hopewell Centre
183 Queen’s Road East
Wanchai, Hong Kong
|Telephone||:||(852) 2862 8555|
|Facsimile||:||(852) 2865 0990|
2017 Annual General Meeting
The notice of the 2017 AGM setting out details of each proposed resolution and other relevant information as set out in the circular were distributed to all Shareholders more than 20 clear business days before the date of the 2017 AGM. Separate resolutions were proposed on each substantially separate issue, including re-election of individual Directors. In strict compliance with Rule 13.39(4) of the Listing Rules, the Company’s Articles stated that all resolutions proposed in a general meeting will be decided on poll except for procedural or administrative matters. The Share Registrar was appointed as the scrutineer for vote-taking at the 2017 AGM. Procedures for conducting a poll were explained by the Share Registrar before commencement of poll voting at the 2017 AGM.
The 2017 AGM was held at Golden Restaurant, Macau Jockey Club (HK) Club House, 1st Floor, China Merchants Tower, Shun Tak Centre, 200 Connaught Road Central, Hong Kong on Friday, 23 June 2017 at 3:00 p.m. at which all resolutions were duly passed including (i) receipt of the audited financial statements of the Company for the year ended 31 December 2016 and the reports of Directors and the independent auditor; (ii) re-election of Mr. Norman Ho and Ms. Pansy Ho as Directors of the Company; (iii) approval of the Directors’ fees; (iv) re-appointment of PwC as auditor of the Company and authorisation to the Board to fix its remuneration; (v) granting of the general mandate to the Board to buy back the Company’s shares; (vi) granting of the general mandate to the Board to issue new shares of the Company; and (vii) authorisation to the Board to extend the general mandate to issue new shares by adding the number of shares bought back.
The poll results were posted on the websites of the Company and the Stock Exchange in accordance with the Listing Rules as soon as after the closure of the 2017 AGM.
Procedures for Shareholders to Convene a General Meeting
In accordance with Section 566 of the Hong Kong Companies Ordinance (Chapter 622) (the “Ordinance”), Shareholders representing at least 5% of the total voting rights of all Shareholders having a right to vote at general meetings can make a requisition to convene a general meeting. The requisition must state the objects of the meeting, and must be signed by the Shareholders concerned and deposited at the registered office of the Company for the attention of the Company Secretary. The requisition must also (a) state the name(s) of the requisitionist(s), (b) the contact details of the requisitionist(s) and (c) the number of ordinary shares of the Company held by the requisitionist(s).
Procedures for Shareholders to Put Forward Proposals at General Meeting
According to the Ordinance, Shareholder(s) representing at least 2.5% of the total voting rights of all Shareholders who have a relevant right to vote; or at least 50 Shareholders who have a relevant right to vote can submit a written request to move a resolution at the general meeting of the Company. The written request must state the resolution, accompanied by a statement of not more than 1,000 words with respect to the matter referred to in the proposed resolution, signed by the relevant Shareholder(s) and deposited at the registered office of the Company.
The Company Secretary is a full-time employee of the Company and has day-to-day knowledge of the Company’s affairs. The Company Secretary is responsible for advising the Board on governance matters. For the year under review, the Company Secretary has taken no less than 15 hours of relevant professional training.
During the year ended 31 December 2017, no amendment was made to the Company’s Articles. The latest version of the Articles is available on the websites of the Company and the Stock Exchange.
The Company will continue to review its corporate governance practices on a timely basis and take necessary and appropriate actions to ensure compliance with the required practices and standards including code provisions in the CG Code.
Procedures For Shareholders To Propose A Person For Election As Director
Subject to the provisions under the Companies Ordinance (Cap. 622), the Rules Governing The Listing of Securities on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (the “Listing Rules”) and the Articles of Association of the Company (the “Articles”), shareholders of the Company shall have rights to propose a person for election as a director of the Company (the “Election”) at an annual general meeting (“AGM”), provided that the total number of directors shall not exceed the maximum number fixed by or in accordance with the Articles.
Shareholder who wishes to propose a person other than a retiring director of the Company for election as a director at the AGM should deposit a written notice to that effect at the registered office (address shown below) of the Company for the attention of the Company Secretary.
Penthouse 39th Floor, West Tower, Shun Tak Centre
200 Connaught Road Central, Hong Kong
The written notice signed by the shareholder (not being the person to be proposed) qualified to attend and vote at the AGM should include the following information:
(a) the full name and address of the person proposed for election;
(b) personal biographical details of such nominated candidate as required by Rule 13.51(2) of the Listing Rules; and
(c) a written consent signed by the nominated candidate indicating his/her willingness to be elected as director.
The written notice must be lodged with the Company at its registered office during a 7-day period commencing from the day after the despatch of the notice of AGM appointed for such election (or such other period, being a period of at least 7 days commencing no earlier than the date after the despatch of the notice of AGM and ending no later than 7 days prior to the date of AGM, as may from time to time be determined by the Board and notified to the shareholders). If the written notice is lodged less than 15 business days prior to the date of the AGM, the Company will need to consider the adjournment of the AGM in order to allow shareholders 10 business days notice (or such notice period under the applicable rules and regulations) of the proposal.
Upon receipt of the signed written notice and due verifications on information provided, the Company shall provide information to shareholders regarding the proposal as soon as practicable, without prejudice to any applicable rules and regulations as effective from time to time.