The Value of Women Across the Board

For International Women’s Day on March 8, we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and support the call to accelerate gender equality across the world. Beyond the obvious social argument in favor of gender parity, improving gender diversity is also a huge opportunity for both companies and countries to create value.

Research by McKinsey shows that companies with greater gender diversity on their executive teams are more likely to experience above-average profitability compared to companies with lower diversity. There are also strong links between greater gender diversity and levels of innovation and productivity.

Improving gender equality also presents huge opportunities for emerging markets' economic development. For example, India could add US$770 billion to its annual gross domestic product (GDP), an 18% increase over business-as-usual GDP, by 2025, through advancing women's equality.1

At Matthews Asia, we strive to engage with companies in our portfolios that lack women on their boards within the broader context of the skills, expertise and competencies required for effective leadership. This can mean writing to companies to encourage improvements in their inclusion policies and in some cases voting against board director nominations.

“Leveraging an equitable workforce for the long-term growth of a business requires leadership with both inherent and acquired diversity.”Kathlyn Collins. Vice President, Head of Responsible Investing and Stewardship

Insights From Our Investment Team

Kathlyn Collins, Vice President, Head of Responsible Investing & Stewardship

Leveraging an equitable workforce for the long-term sustainable growth of a business requires leadership with inherent and acquired diversity. Diversity in gender, as well as in age, experience, nationality and skill set, is also critical to the effectiveness of boards and their management teams.