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We’ll always have China…right?

Despite the recent obsession with Europe’s financial crises and continued sluggishness in the U.S., there’s at least one more big worry out there—China. If its slowdown turns serious, the damage here will be extensive
By Ian McGugan
December 20th, 2011

China’s fastest growing exports are anxiety and skepticism. After years of seeing its collective wealth race ahead at a breakneck clip, the world’s most populous economy is hitting some speed bumps—and raising concerns about how severe its slowdown will be. … Continue reading

Posted in Economy, Top Stories | Tagged , , , , , ,

Who’s doing your review?

There's no board governance review like an external review done by a qualified assessor—provided they take the right steps
By Richard Leblanc
December 19th, 2011

A few memories stand out from my engagements as an external board reviewer. One was the dominant CEO who kept interrupting me to tell me how effective he and “his” board were, despite the results of my assessment (the board … Continue reading

Posted in Views | Tagged , , , ,

Fight! For IR, it’s the ultimate test

Investor relations is never more important than in a hostile takeover bid or proxy contest. Having just lived through the experience, our columnist weighs in on the value of preparation and quick action
By Michael Salter
December 19th, 2011

The telephone call came from a New York City hedge fund manager, minutes after market close on a Wednesday in mid-August, 2011. He wanted to know our response to the hostile takeover bid for MOSAID Technologies Inc. that Wi-LAN Inc. … Continue reading

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Shades of grey in green

“Ethical oil” is just a slogan. But it’s hard to argue that we shouldn’t consider the widest possible range of environmental and social issues when making policy decisions
By Sandra Odendahl
December 19th, 2011

The countdown is on as I write. Unless things change, the European Union is set to vote in December on a directive that would discourage the use of oil from Canadian oilsands by classifying it as one of the highest … Continue reading

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The risk behind the reward

The CSA has amended its executive compensation disclosure guidelines. Issuers must now disclose details about compensation risk and compensation committee expertise; they might also want to rethink their disclosure overall
By Ken Hugessen
December 19th, 2011

Again this year, the Canadian Securities Administrators has issued amendments to executive compensation disclosure guidelines with compliance required for the 2012 proxy season. Following a more comprehensive set of changes in 2008, these latest amendments are more limited, with a … Continue reading

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Mining: A regular money magnet

In a lot of sectors these days, financing isn’t so easy to come by. But not mining. There, thanks to strategic investors and bullish pricing forecasts, the deals continue to flow
By Robert Olsen
December 19th, 2011

What could be worse for a cyclical sector such as mining than the headlines of the past few months? Sovereign debt crisis spreading to the U.S., negative earnings reports, continued global central bank cuts, depressed consumer confidence, China’s slowing demand … Continue reading

Posted in Views | Tagged , , ,

Good, better, best

Canadian boards can expect a familiar message when they take their first calls from Stephen Erlichman, new executive director of the Canadian Coalition for Good Governance
December 15th, 2011

Insider Stephen Erlichman Who Since September, executive director of the Canadian Coalition for Good Governance Involvement The CCGG, which is led by and represents Canadian institutional shareholders, has emerged as the country’s most influential shareholder rights organization. It actively campaigns for … Continue reading

Posted in Insider, Top Stories | Tagged , , , , , ,

Putting risk in its place

Escalating expectations, obligations and unwelcome surprises have directors losing sleep worrying about risk oversight. The solution lies in a mix of tried-and-true leadership and the latest knowledge and tools
By Cooper Langford
November 23rd, 2011

WHEN YOU’VE SPENT close to two decades as a CEO, held more than a dozen positions on high-level boards, and have board or executive experience in four distressed situations, you’ve earned the right to the first word on risk. “Risk … Continue reading

Posted in Fall Report, Features, Top Stories | Tagged , , , , , ,

The long hello

A CEO search that drags on for many months is rarely a good sign or situation. Yet sometimes the waiting is worth it
By Paul Brent
October 7th, 2011

What’s a sure sign that your CEO search has gone off the rails? Try a mention in the business press that your lengthy chief executive quest is starting to make investors nervous. That’s just the scenario that Shoppers Drug Mart … Continue reading

Posted in Handbook | Tagged , , ,

Can Maple seal the deal?

The fate of the TMX has been the talk of 2011. Now it’s all come down to the ability of a sole remaining suitor, the bank-led Maple Group, to overcome competition concerns and win over a skeptical market
By Jim Middlemiss
October 7th, 2011

Melanie Aitken has earned a reputation for being a tough competition cop. Appointed to head the country’s Competition Bureau in 2009, Aitken has taken on realtors, whacked Bell Canada with a $10-million fine for false advertising and is busy chasing … Continue reading

Posted in Ticker | Tagged , , , , ,

Carol Stephenson: Risk, reward, repeat

In The Director's Chair, with David W. Anderson: In an era when women presidents, CEOs, chairs, corporate directors and business deans are still the exception, Carol Stephenson has excelled in all five roles
October 7th, 2011

It’s fitting that Carol Stephenson is dean of the Richard Ivey School of Business, for her multifaceted career is a case study in the value of lifelong learning, peer interaction and the power of strong leadership. In addition to her … Continue reading

Posted in The Director's Chair, Top Stories | Tagged , , , , ,

Secrets of succession

Boards’ compensation duties don’t end at setting CEO pay—they also include putting in place the right people and plans for the CEO’s replacement
By Ken Hugessen
October 7th, 2011

Developing and executing a plan for internal CEO succession is one of the critical challenges boards face. The importance of effective succession planning is widely recognized by institutional shareholders and industry analysts; among others, the Canadian Coalition for Good Governance’s … Continue reading

Posted in Views | Tagged , ,

Facing up to the future

Are we expending too much time, money and goodwill on "easy" environmental initiatives like swapping light bulbs and using cloth bags, when it’s massive change we need?
By Sandra Odendahl
October 7th, 2011

Opinion polls are again showing that public concern for environmental issues is slipping in relation to economic concerns. At one level, given the fragile state of the economy, it’s understandable. People are always inclined to put short-term needs for food, … Continue reading

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Don’t look down

When is the economy like an airplane? When it’s flying at stall speed. That’s Canada and the U.S. now. When planes stall, they can crash. If our economies follow suit, how should companies react?
By Ian McGugan
October 7th, 2011

When it comes to economics, few things are more treacherous than a bad metaphor. Take, for instance, the notion that prevailed well into the summer— and prevails still in some quarters—that business these days is just in a bit of … Continue reading

Posted in Economy | Tagged , , ,

On the road with the CEO

Does your IRO provide leadership on roadshows? And is the CEO prepared to be led? The ability to cross traditional boundaries holds the key to successful investor roadshows
By Michael Salter
October 7th, 2011

The CEO had just delivered a subpar presentation to an institutional investor, losing track of time—and much of the audience—in the minutia of biotechnology. After the meeting the investor relations officer (IRO) told him: “The next group we’re meeting doesn’t … Continue reading

Posted in Views | Tagged , , ,
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