Corporate Governance Statement 2018
NOHO PARTNERS PLC
CORPORATE GOVERNANCE STATEMENT 2018
The Corporate Governance Statement has been prepared in accordance with Chapter 7, Section 7 of the Finnish Securities Markets Act and the section on Corporate Governance in the Finnish Corporate Governance Code. The company complies with the Corporate Governance Code 2015, published by the Securities Market Association, with some exceptions. The Corporate Governance Code is publicly available, for example at the Securities Market Association website at www.cgfinland.fi.
This statement has been compiled as a separate report from the annual report of the Board of Directors. The statement is not updated during the financial period, but the up-to-date information of the topics included is presented at the Company’s website at www.noho.fi.
ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
The tasks of the Annual General Meeting as the highest decision-making body of the company have been determined in the Limited Liability Companies Act and in the Articles of Association. At the Annual General Meeting, the shareholders exercise their decision-making power in matters related to the company. The Annual General Meeting is held within six months from the end of the financial period. The Board summons the Annual General Meeting and decides where and when it will be held. The Articles of Association state that the notice of the Annual General Meeting is published for the shareholders’ information at least at the company’s website no earlier than three months and no later than three weeks prior to the Annual General Meeting. However, the notice must be published at least nine days before the record date of the Annual General Meeting.
The Board of Directors summons an Extraordinary General Meeting when it considers it necessary or when required by the law.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors has general authority in all the company’s matters that have not been designated by law or the Articles of Association to be decided or implemented by other bodies. The Board of Directors is responsible for the company’s administration and the proper organisation of its operations. The Board of Directors confirms the company’s strategy, risk management principles and values observed in the company’s operations, approves its business plan and decides on significant investments.
The operations of the Board of Directors follow current legislation, guidelines issued by the stock exchange, other official regulations and the company’s Articles of Association.
According to the Articles of Association, the Annual General Meeting selects between five and seven members for NoHo Partners Plc’s Board of Directors. The term of office of the members of the Board of Directors ends when the following Annual General Meeting is concluded. The Board of Directors or Annual General Meeting elects the Chairman. In the composition of the Board of Directors, the goal is to appoint members with diverse and complimentary backgrounds, experience, expertise and from both genders, so that the diversity of the Board of Directors supports NoHo Partners’ business and future in the best possible way. For the present, the company’s Board of Directors has not considered it necessary to establish audit, nomination or remuneration committees, since it is not required by the scope of the company’s business operations or the discharge of duties of the Board of Directors.
Since 2005, the Chairman of the Board of Directors has been Timo Laine. The work of the Board of Directors is organised in accordance with the currently valid rules of procedure of the Board of Directors. The rules of procedure are available on the company’s website.
Selection, term of office and composition of the members of the Board of Directors
The Annual General Meeting selects the members of the Board of Directors annually. According to the Articles of Association, the Board of Directors consists of no fewer than five and no more than seven members. The term of office of the members of the Board of Directors ends when the following Annual General Meeting is concluded.
In addition to the Board members, meetings are attended by the CEO, CFO, the secretary of the Board and, when necessary, separately invited persons.
The Board of Directors evaluates the independence of its members annually and reports which Board members it defines as independent of the company and of significant shareholders.
In 2018, the members of the Board of Directors of the company were:
Timo Laine, b. 1966, diploma in marketing, Chairman of the Board
Direct and controlling interest 4,901,009 shares
Mikko Aartio, b. 1969, vocational qualification in business and administration for upper-secondary school graduates
Direct and controlling interest 3,381,961 shares
Jarmo Viitala, b. 1960, M. Sc. (Econ) (until 31 May 2018)
Direct and controlling interest 24,900 shares
Petri Olkinuora, b. 1957, M. Sc. (Tech.), MBA, Vice-Chairman of the Board
Direct and controlling interest 12,500 shares
Mika Niemi, b. 1966, vocational qualification in business and administration
Direct and controlling interest 2,236,789 shares
Timo Everi, b. 1963, BBA, eMBA, (until 25 April 2018)
Direct and controlling interest 0 shares
Saku Tuominen, b. 1967, M. Sc. (Econ) (starting 31 May 2018)
Direct and controlling interest 4,423 shares
Tomi Terho, b. 1984, M. Sc. (Econ) (starting 31 May 2018)
Direct and controlling interest 0 shares
Mikko Kuusi, b. 1989, Finnish matriculation examination and economics studies (starting 31 May 2018)
Direct and controlling interest 4,423 shares
Of the Board members, Petri Olkinuora, Saku Tuominen, Tomi Terho and Mikko Kuusi are independent of the company and of significant shareholders. Of the Board members, three (Laine, Aartio and Niemi) are dependent of the company and of a significant shareholder.
During the financial period, the Board of Directors held twenty-two (22) meetings. Some of the meetings were held by e-mail or telephone.
The attendance of the members of the Board at the 2018 meetings:
Timo Laine 19/22
Mikko Aartio 22/22
Petri Olkinuora 22/22
Mika Niemi 19/22
Saku Tuominen 7/10
Tomi Terho 10/10
Mikko Kuusi 9/10
Jarmo Viitala 11/12
Timo Everi 6/7
The composition of the Board of Directors does not meet Recommendation 9 of the Finnish Corporate Governance Code concerning diversity, in that both genders are not represented on the Board. However, the company’s objective is to include both genders in the composition of the Board of Directors.
Remuneration for the members of the Board of Directors
The Annual General Meeting decides on the remuneration paid to the members of the Board of Directors. In 2018, the annual remuneration of the Chairman of the Board of Directors was EUR 25,000, for the Vice-Chairman it was EUR 20,000, and for the members of the Board EUR 10,000. A separate meeting attendance allowance is not paid.
CEO AND THE EXECUTIVE TEAM
NoHo Partners Plc’s Board of Directors appoints the CEO of the company, supervises his or her work and decides on the remuneration and benefits to be paid and the conditions of the post. The CEO is not a member of the Board of Directors. He or she is in charge of the parent company’s and the Group’s operative management and control in accordance with legislation and the guidelines given by the Board of Directors.
Juha Helminen served as the company’s CEO until 31 May 2018. Aku Vikström (b. 1972) has served as the company’s CEO from 1 June 2018 on. On 31 December 2018, Jalen Invest Oy, which is controlled by Aku Vikström, owned 207,419 NoHo Partners Plc shares.
The CEO manages the administration of routine matters of the company and of the Group in accordance with the instructions and orders issued by the Board of Directors. The CEO is directly responsible for the planning and implementation of the strategy and the corresponding investments, for ensuring that the bookkeeping is carried out as required by the law and that the company’s financial management has been organised in a reliable manner. The CEO serves as the Chairman of the Executive Team. The CEO monitors the decisions related to the persons at the executive level, as well as other important operative decisions. He or she also ensures that the subsidiaries of the Group operate in the interests of the parent company and endorse the Group’s strategy.
Operative business operations are the responsibility of the CEO, with the help of the Executive Team. The Executive Team prepares and makes decisions in matters within the CEO’s decision-making power.
The tasks of the Executive Team include planning and implementing the company’s strategy, management of business operations, result monitoring, annual planning, and the management of investments, corporate acquisitions and operational change plans. The Executive Team meets on a weekly basis.
On 31 December 2018, the Group’s Executive Team comprised:
Aku Vikström, b. 1972, CEO
Direct and controlling interest 207,419 shares
Juha Helminen, b. 1977, Director of International Operations
Direct and controlling interest 23,400 shares
Jarno Suominen, b. 1972, CFO
Direct and controlling interest 249,347 shares
Tanja Virtanen, b. 1977, CBO, Food Restaurants, rest of Finland
Direct and controlling interest 200 shares
Paul Meli, b. 1977, CBO, Nightclubs and Pubs&Entertainment, rest of Finland
Direct and controlling interest 181,670 shares
Perttu Pesonen, b. 1976, Development Director
Direct and controlling interest 70,861 shares
Tero Kaikkonen, b. 1976, Development Director
Direct and controlling interest 100 shares
Joonas Mäkilä, b. 1978, Commercial Director
Direct and controlling interest 41,419 shares
Anne Kokkonen, b. 1976, HR Director
Direct and controlling interest 24,802 shares
Benjamin Gripenberg, b. 1975, CBO, Food Restaurants, Helsinki Metropolitan Area
Direct and controlling interest 43,081 shares
Elina Yrjänheikki, b. 1966, CBO, Events
Direct and controlling interest 6,647 shares
Eemeli Nurminen, b. 1983, CBO, Nightclubs and Pubs&Entertainment, Helsinki Metropolitan Area
Direct and controlling interest 2,840 shares
NoHo Partners’ insider rules apply Nasdaq Helsinki Ltd’s insider guidelines and other related legislation, such as the Market Abuse Regulation.
NoHo Partners applies the so-called closed period of 30 calendar days before the publication of the company’s financial statements bulletin or any interim report. During the closed period, NoHo Partners Plc’s management and personnel participating in financial reporting may not trade (on their own account or that of a third party) in the company’s financial instruments.
The company has defined as permanent insiders the persons working in NoHo Partners Group who by virtue of their position or tasks have access to all insider information pertaining to NoHo Partners. In addition to a permanent insiders list, project-specific insider lists will be drafted, as prescribed by Nasdaq Helsinki Ltd.’s insider guidelines.
As soon as possible, NoHo Partners Plc publishes any insider information which directly concerns NoHo Partners or its financial instruments, unless the prevailing conditions result in the fulfilment of the prerequisites for postponing the publication of the insider information in question.
The company’s management personnel and their related parties have an obligation to report to NoHo Partners and to the Financial Supervisory Authority about any business transactions conducted with the financial instruments of NoHo Partners (the so-called management transactions). NoHo Partners publishes the report as a stock exchange release within three days of the business transaction.
The person in charge of NoHo Partners Plc’s insider issues is CFO Jarno Suominen.
The Articles of Association state that the Annual General Meeting selects the auditor for NoHo Partners Plc.
The 2018 Annual General Meeting selected a firm of authorised public accountants, Deloitte Ltd, as the auditors. Hannu Mattila, APA, acts as the responsible auditor.
Auditing is carried out in accordance with the relevant acts and the Articles of Association. In practice, the auditing work is carried out during the financial period by inspecting the business operations and administration, and as an actual financial statements audit after the financial period has ended.
In 2018, the auditors of the NoHo Partners Group were paid TEUR 562.8 for auditing tasks (in 2017: TEUR 215.9) and TEUR 83.1 for other guidance and consultation services (in 2017: TEUR 54.4).
NoHo Partners Plc’s internal management and control procedures are based on the Limited Liability Companies Act, the Articles of Association and the internal policies of the company. The company’s management and control are distributed between the Annual General Meeting, the Board of Directors, and the CEO. Internal control refers to all the procedures, systems and methods that the company’s management employs to ensure efficient, economical and reliable operations.
NoHo Partners Plc’s Board of Directors is responsible for organising the internal control. The Board of Directors has the highest responsibility of the company’s visions, strategic goals and the commercial goals set based on them. The Board of Directors also bears the highest responsibility for the supervision of the bookkeeping and financial management and the proper arrangement of operations. The Board of Directors approves the common guidelines for the entire internal control of the Group.
The CEO is directly responsible for the implementation of the strategy and the corresponding investments, for ensuring that the bookkeeping is carried out as required by the law, and that the financial management has been organised in a reliable manner. Operative business operations are the responsibility of the CEO, with the help of the Executive Team. The company’s senior management is responsible for internal control, while the auditors take care of external auditing.
Taking the quality and scope of the business operations into consideration, the company has not deemed it necessary to establish a special internal audit organisation. Instead, its duties are included in the business organisation’s tasks in all the units of the Group.
Methods and procedures of internal control
The CEO is responsible for organising the bookkeeping and control mechanisms in practice. The CEO monitors decisions related to executive level persons, as well as important operative decisions. The CEO also ensures that the Group subsidiaries operate in the interests of the parent company and endorse the Group’s strategy. The Group’s Executive Team controls business operations and monitors the administration in the Group’s daily operations.
The Group has defined clear authorisations for approving investments and matters related to the personnel. The main tasks of the Group’s Executive Team:
- supervision of business operations and finances, and
- handling investments, corporate acquisitions and expanding and restriction plans significant for the Group.
Internal control is an essential part of the company’s administration and management systems. It covers NoHo Partners’ all units and operations. Among other things, internal control must evaluate the sufficiency and efficiency of the risk positions related to the company’s management and administrative systems, operations and data systems that apply to:
– the creativity and integrity of financial and operational data
– the profitability and efficiency of operations
– securing assets
– compliance with laws, orders, and agreements.
NoHo Partners strives to increase the shareholder value within the limits set by legislation and the obligations of society.
NoHo Partners divides the risk factors influencing business operations, result and stock exchange value into five main categories: market and business operation risks, risks related to the personnel, technology and data security risks, financing risks, and juridical risks.
NoHo Partners strives to protect itself against other risks by taking out extensive insurance contracts. These include statutory insurances, liability and property insurances, and legal protection ownership insurances. The scope of the insurances, values insured and excesses are checked annually together with the company’s insurance company.
The Group’s risk management and market change anticipation constitute an integral part of the management’s everyday work in order to guarantee the continuity of the business operations. NoHo Partners carries out continuous risk mapping related to its operations and aims to protect itself from identified risk factors in the best possible way.
REPORTING AND CONTROL SYSTEMS
The Group employs reporting systems required to efficiently monitor its operations. Internal control is connected to the company’s vision, strategic goals and the business goals defined based on them. The realisation of business goals and the Group’s financial development are monitored monthly with a control system covering the entire Group. As an essential part of the control system, the realisation data and up-to-date estimates are examined by the Group’s Executive Team on a monthly basis. The control system includes extensive sales reporting, a profit and loss account, estimates for turnover and profit, and operational key figures.