A step towards balanced leadership?

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First-time women directors will bring diversity and a fresh point of view to India Inc, argues Hiroo Mirchandani

The Companies Act, 2013, mandates that there must be at least one woman director at every company listed in India and also every public company with a paid-up share capital of ₹1 billion (US$16 million) and above or minimum turnover of ₹3 billion. This is intended to improve the representation of women on corporate boards in India, which currently stands at less than 6%.

Research has shown that companies with more women directors produce stronger business performance. Fortune 500 companies with more women directors have outperformed others on financial measures such as return on equity, sales and capital. It would be interesting to study if companies with more women directors listed on India’s leading stock exchanges outperform others too.

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Hiroo Mirchandani has 30 years of experience in customer facing roles primarily in consumer goods and healthcare. She was a business unit director at Pfizer and held sales and marketing positions at Dabur, the World Gold Council and Asian Paints. She currently consults independently.

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