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Last Year the Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators and Hermes Equity Ownership Services launched their successful Transparency in Governance Awards to notice good standards of disclosure in companies’ annual reports.

We are delighted that the ICSA/Hermes Transparency in Governance Awards have a new category this year – the best overall report for FTSE small cap and AIM quoted companies as a result of a suggestion from the QCA’s Corporate Governance Committee.

Committee Chairman Edward Beale commented: “The QCA works hard to encourage good standards of governance amongst its members as evidenced by the new guidelines we will be publishing shortly. We are very pleased that ICSA and Hermes are also keen to encourage best practice.”

Companies who wish to have their annual reports considered for shortlisting must contact with a request and a PDF copy of their annual report by the deadline for this year’s nominations which is 31 July 2010.

The judges will take account of how the company reports its strategy and risks together with how it reports on its governance including board performance, remuneration and the work of its committees. The judges are keen to understand from the reports how long-term value will be created and sustained for shareholders.

The author of this article is Tim Goodman of Hermes Equity Ownership Services and member of the QCA Corporate Governance Committee.

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