Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Sports Direct shifts again

Just a quick update, the process of reform at Sports Direct has obviously just started, but some welcome news today. The company has committed to a fully independent review of the business, including employment practices. Whilst it had previously said that it would use its existing legal adviser RPC, now it has agreed to take a genuinely independent approach.

As a reminder, the Trade Union Share Owners resolution called for an independent review of employment practices. TUSO also argued in communication with shareholders before the AGM that RPC should not undertake any review as it was not independent of the company.

Full statement below -

20 September 2016 

SPORTS DIRECT INTERNATIONAL PLC ("Sports Direct" or "the Company")
Independent Review and Workers' Representative update 
Having given careful consideration to concerns raised by independent shareholders, facilitated by the Investor Forum, Sports Direct today announces that the forthcoming '360-degree' review of working practices and corporate governance which was announced on 6 September 2016 and which was to be led by RPC will now be led by an independent party other than RPC.
The Board has made this decision after listening to shareholder feedback at the recent AGM/Open Day and during subsequent consultation with a number of the Company's long-standing shareholders via the Investor Forum. 
The Board will continue constructive dialogue with the Company's independent shareholders in order to reach agreement regarding the specific nature and timing of the review. 
RPC will continue to be a valued legal advisor to Sports Direct, and the Board would like to thank RPC for its work on the existing Working Practices Report, which was compiled to the highest standards. 
The Company today further announces that the selection process for the Workers' Representative on the Board of Sports Direct (as also announced on 6 September 2016) shall be via democratic staff elections, in which it is anticipated that all staff directly engaged or employed by Sports Direct may vote, further details of which will be announced at a later date.

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