ME Group has supported new rules by the FCA, who have stipulated that all listed company Boards should disclose diversity information.

The regulator’s legislation requires companies to either ‘explain or comply’ against diversity targets around the representation of women and ethnic minorities.

The ‘comply or explain’ targets require at least 40% of Board members to be women including one senior board position, and that at least one Board member is from an ethnic minority background.

ME Group CEO, Rob Cooper, welcomes the new proposals:

“We are very proud to have such a diverse workforce including an executive Board, and we’re determined to eliminate barriers that have typically restricted people from moving up the career ladder.

“As a business, we have believed for a long time that it is precisely because of our diversity of ideas that we’ve been able to innovate and ultimately bring more justice to more people.

“Is there still work to be done? Of course, but I think it’s important that the business community is at least recognising the issue instead of shying away from the conversation.

‘We fully support the FCA’s diversity disclosure rules and hope to see some progress being made in the coming months and years ahead.’

Seeking to champion access to justice through litigation funding and LegalTech, ME Group prides itself on being a diverse organisation.

Vastly experienced project and operations professional, Jo Sharp, was promoted to the company’s Board as Chief Operating Officer (COO) in October last year.

Having been with the business since 2019, she commented:

“As a woman leader who has previously worked within the finance sector, I welcome the changes from the FCA to set diversity targets across the industry.

“As a Board member being part of a diverse Board, and indeed workforce, brings together depth and breadth of insights and viewpoints, creating healthy debates and challenge when decision making.”

Risk management specialist, Thea Rogerson, became ME Group’s second female Board appointment in as many months in November as she took up the mantle of Chief Risk Officer (CRO).

“I am encouraged to see that the FCA are ensuring that diversity is present in the Board rooms of the companies it regulates,’ she said.

‘My experience in financial services was one where there was very little diversity present in the big multinationals so feel this will be a tall order for some companies, but a change which will benefit them all.

Although I feel that the ethnic minority target could be increased to be more representative, it is certainly a step in the right direction.”

The new rules apply to listed companies for financial accounting periods starting from April 1st 2022.

In a statement on the FCA’s website, Sarah Pritchard, Executive Director of Markets at the FCA said:

“As investors pay increasing attention to diversity at the top of the companies they invest in, enhancing transparency at Board and executive management level will help hold companies to account and drive further progress.”