At the Annual Meeting on May 27, 2016, Sonepar changed its legal status to that of an SAS (a simplified joint-stock company).
A family shareholding group
Sonepar’s current and future family shareholders are involved with the Group’s business and are encouraged to get familiar with it. The shareholders grouped together in the family holding company, Colam Entreprendre, have strongly and consistently support Sonepar’s lasting growth strategy from the outset. Their close ties to the Group and its executives have fostered mutual trust and helped make Sonepar’s values a living reality.
The Corporate Board
The Corporate Board is composed of figures from the business world, family entrepreneurs and executives with historical roots in Sonepar who meet several times a year. It draws on reporting tools, reports and papers from Committees to examine Group performance.
Chairman of Sonepar SAS
(Permanent Representative of Société de Négoce et Participation)
Frank H. Lakerveld
The Audit Committee, the Nomination and Compensation Committee, The Strategic Committee
These Committees act in support of the Corporate Board and the Chairman, both assisting with and consolidating corporate governance. Each one represents a mix of Board members and family shareholders. Their role is to perform studies, make recommendations, investigate particular issues and contribute to the Corporate Board’s thinking.
The Country Boards
The Board of Directors for each country or group of countries meets several times a year to examine performance, as well as operational and strategic issues, in its area, extending the work of General Management.
The Shareholders’ Meeting
With over 250 direct and indirect Sonepar shareholders attending in person and nearly 1,000 others attending via webcast every year, the general Shareholders’ Meeting provides an opportunity for shareholders, General Management and other Sonepar executives to exchange views. At this essential annual event, the Group’s results and strategic priorities going forward are discussed.
The Governance Charter
In 2017, Sonepar updated its Governance Charter. While the long-standing principles and values in the Charter were maintained, a section on compliance with the laws and regulations currently in force was formally added. The Charter, which covers two governance chapters—corporate governance and operational governance—now explicitly includes the Group’s Code of Conduct.
Responsibilities at every decision-making level are clearly spelled out with the overriding aim of making the Group “La Référence”—the standard-setter in its industry.
“Compliance is everyone’s responsibility at Sonepar, every day and in everything we do.”
Sonepar therefore supplemented its Governance Charter in late 2017 with a Code of Conduct summarizing the main principles of integrity that are valid for all of its 44,500 associates the world over. The Code has since been made available in all Group languages and locations.
Sonepar encourages every physical person, whether employed by a Sonepar company or not, to report, selflessly and in good faith, any serious and obvious breach of law or regulation, or any threat or severe harm to business integrity, such as acts of corruption and influence-peddling, as well as any behavior or situation that violates the Group’s Code of Conduct that has come to that person’s attention.
To access the whistleblower tool, go to www.sonepar.com/alert