Aplus Magazine: “TOSHIBA’S TRUE COLOURS” (w/quote from BDTI’s Representative Director)

Excerpt:Audit Committee under scrutiny

Toshiba was considered a reform pioneer, first appointing independent directors in 2001. But the company’s five-person audit committee – of which two members were former Toshiba executives and two others lacked any business experience whatsover – was a classic study of Japan’s corporate insider culture that can often create compliant committees under the thumb of management. …..While the accounting errors probably would have been hard for any audit committee to spot if managers wanted to keep them hidden, this committee composition could not possibly have helped, say Nicholas Benes, Representative Director of the Board Director Training Institute of Japan.

Director skills sets matter, says Benes, a leading transparency advocate who first proposed the Corporate Governance Code to the Japanese government.Just because you were the ambassador to Brazil does not mean you are fit for the audit committee.

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The Board Director Training Institute (BDTI) is a "public interest" nonprofit in Japan dedicated to training about directorship, corporate governance, and related management techniques. It is certified by the Japanese government to conduct these activities as a regulated nonprofit. Read a summary about BDTI here, and see a menu of its services for both corporations and investors here.

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