Corporate Governance

Tudor Davies, Chairman’s statement:

The Company’s ownership is very concentrated, with 95 percent of shares held by three separate fund management groups, reflecting the share placing, extensive reconstruction and reorganisation, carried out by myself with the support of shareholders in 2011.
Since 2011, the governance and the culture of the organisation has been led by me, in the role of Chairman, based on a strategy agreed with the Company’s major shareholders. This strategy focussed on servicing a profitable contract in the Middle East whilst pursuing a major professional negligence claim against its former auditors.
At the end of 2018 the contract in Abu Dhabi we had held since 2011 was ended, and since then we have been in active discussions with the former client and other potential clients to provide Fire Service training and audit services. The outcome of our case against our former Auditors Grant Thornton was found in our favour in January 2019 but is now subject of an application for an appeal to the Court of Appeal.

The Board reviewed the Corporate Governance requirements on 24 January 2020, and intends to review them further once the the case against Grant Thornton is finalised and in the light of the results of our ongoing efforts to gain future business in UAE.


AssetCo plc (“AssetCo” or the “company”) uses the 2018 QCA Corporate Governance Code, as far as it is applicable to the company, as a guide to its approach to corporate governance.

The QCA Code has ten principles of corporate governance that the company has committed to apply within the foundations of the business.

Governance principles


1. Promoting value for shareholders

The principal activities of the company and its strategy are explained in the Strategic Report section of the Annual Report and in the Chairman’s Statement in both the Annual Report and the Interim Statement.

2. Meeting shareholder needs and expectations

The company, through the chairman, has regular contact with its institutional shareholders. The board supports the principle that the annual general meeting be used to communicate with private shareholders and encourages them to participate.

3. Taking into account wider stakeholder and social responsibilities

The vast majority of the company’s employees, customers and suppliers are located in the United Arab Emirates (“UAE”). The company ensures that it complies with all laws and regulations governing employment standards and occupational health, safety, environmental and other matters within the jurisdiction within which it operates.

4. Embedding risk management

The board considers regularly the risks relating to AssetCo’s activities. Details of the principal risks and uncertainties facing the company are set out in the Strategic Report section of the Annual Report.

5. Maintaining the board

The composition of the board (Chairman plus two independent, non-executive directors) is considered to be appropriate in the view of the small size and lack of complexity within the company.
There are three board committees, all chaired by a non-executive director. Details of the working of these committees is set out in the Directors’ Report section of the Annual Report.

6. Ensuring directors have the necessary capabilities

Individual directors have a wide range of qualifications and expertise to bring to board debates. Biographical details of the directors are available in the Board of Directors section of the Annual Report.

7. Evaluating board performance

In view of the small size of the board, there is no formal board evaluation process.

8. Promoting ethical corporate values and behaviours

The board, through the chairman, seeks to maintain high ethical standards, within its UAE operation as well as in the UK, including in its dealing with customers and suppliers.

9. Maintaining governance structures and processes to support decision-making

The board is responsible for the company’s system of internal control and reviewing its effectiveness. The procedures for planning and monitoring the operational and financial performance of the company, as well as its compliance with applicable laws and regulations are set out in the Directors’ Report section of the Annual Report.

10. Communicating corporate governance

The principal method of communicating the company’s corporate governance process and principles is the Annual Report, which is sent directly to all shareholders (unless they have specifically requested only electronic communication), and is available to other stakeholders and the general public on the company’s website. The annual general meeting also provides an opportunity for shareholders to address corporate governance matters.