The News Scroll 14 April 2017  Last Updated at 1:54 pm

First Global Database Ranking Over 3,000 Companies on Progress

20

Towards Gender Equality

(Attn.Editors: The following press release comes to you under an arrangement with PRNewswire. PTI takes no editorial responsibility for the same.)

Towards Gender Equality

Mumbai, London and Amsterdam, April 13, 2017/PRNewswire/ - 2017 Best Performers are: L'Oreal (FR), Pearson (UK), National Australia Bank (AU), Sodexo (FR) and BTG (UK) Equileap, an organization set up to accelerate progress towards gender equality at work, is issuing the first cross-sector ranking showing for the first time how well the world's top public companies, across all sectors and countries perform on gender equality.

It is part of a new tool-kit designed to cut the 118 years; it is estimated it will take for equality to be achieved at present rates of change. This includes:

- The 2017 Gender Equality: Global Report and Ranking. Presenting the Top 200 companies, key findings on gender equality, as well as detailed insights per country and per sector.

Download the full global report and ranking [http://www.Equileap.Org/company-reports ]

- Company reports, custom-made documents with detailed information and aggregated figures on individual companies Order a company report [http://equileap.Org/company-reports ]

- The Family of Equileap Gender Equality Indices (Global, US and Europe) designed to track best-performing companies in terms of gender equality. These indices will be used both as benchmarks and underlyings of various financial products.

Group

(Bloomberg

Equileap Score

Rank Company Country Classification)

(Out of 35)

1 L'Oreal France Cosmetic/Personal

Care

22

2 Pearson United Kingdom Media

22

3 National Australia Banks

22

Australia

4 Sodexo France Food Service

22

5 BTG United Kingdom Pharmaceuticals

22

6 Telia Company Sweden Telecommunications

22

7 Westpac Australia Banks

21

8 SEB Sweden Banks

21

9 Elisa Oyj Finland Telecommunications

21

10 Diageo United Kingdom Beverages

21

11 Marks & Spencer United Kingdom Retail

20

12 Swedbank Sweden Banks

20

13 Bank Leumi Israel Banks

20

14 Societe Generale France Banks

20

16 RELX United Kingdom Commercial Services

20

17 Unibail-Rodamco Netherlands REITS

20

18 Merck & Co United States Phamaceuticals

20

19 Transurban Australia Commercial Services

20

20 GlaxosmithKline United Kingdom Pharmaceuticals

20

Headlines From 2017 Gender Equality: Global Report & Banking

- The Top 5 countries are Norway, Sweden, the Netherlands, Finland and the UK. They have a higher percentage of companies making it to the Top 200 (respectively 58%, 38%, 35%, 33% and 28%). In comparison, only 2% of US companies make it to the Top 200

- The Top 3 sectors are Communications - 11% of the companies in this sector make it to the Top 200, followed by Financial and Utilities, where 9% of the companies in each sector make it to the Top 200

- Only 6 companies in the Top 200 report having no gender pay gap (of less than or equal to 3% in their country of incorporation. They are L'Oreal (Fr), Transurban Group (AU), Adobe Systems (US), Deutsche Boerse (DE), Origin Energy (AU) AND Enbridge (CA)

- 4 out of 5 companies in the Top 200 report offering paid maternity/primary care leave and two thirds of companies report offering paid paternity/secondary carer leave. Most of these companies are in Europe. Fewer than 5 of the 30 US companies in the Top 200 report offering both paid maternity and paternity leave.

women executives to 80% man compared to 10% women and 90% men in the remaining 2848 companies in the database

Equileap's Research and Report means that:

- Companies can find out for the first time where they stand within their sector/country and how to improve their performance and take greater advantage of the 'gender dividend'

- Private and institutional investors can target top companies in the ranking to diversify their investment portfolios - making a difference and a return

- Female and male employees can make more informed choices about companies value gender equality

- Governments and other public institutions have a new tool to screen companies they use as suppliers for gender diversity Diana van Maasdijk, Co-founder, Equileap said, "Gender diversity is not only the right thing to do, it is the smart thing to do with a significant number of research papers indicating that it tends to lead to higher returns and lower risk. The newly-launched Equileap tool kit will help companies as well as employees, investors, government and civil society to make decisions supported by in depth analysis."

Jacki Zehner, Former Partner - Goldman Sachs, Chief Engagement Officer, Women Moving Millions, mentioned, "There is increasing demand for products that enable investors to align their investment capital around their values for gender equality. Equileap's Gender Equality Ranking and indices mark an important step forward in the field of gender lens investing.

The results suggest that the presence of women in

corporate leadership positions may improve firm performance significantly. The impact is greatest for female executive shares, followed by female board shares: the presence of female CEO has no noticeable effect. This pattern underscores the importance of creating a pipeline of female mangers and not simply getting women to the very top.

3) World Economic Forum: The Global Gender Gap Report [http://reports.Weforum.Org/global-gender-gap-report-2015 ] (2006-2015).

Annual pay for women only equals the amount men were earning ten years ago, despite an additional quarter of a billion women entering the global workforce 2006. The global gender gap across health, education, economic opportunity and politics has closed by only 4% in the past ten years, with the economic gap closing by just 3% suggesting it will take another 118 years to close this gap completely.

About Equileap

Equileap is an organization aiming to accelerate progress towards gender equality in the workspace, using the power of investments, grants and knowledge. Headquartered in Amsterdam and London, the organization is led by Diana van Maasdijk, Co-founder and Executive Director and Jo Andrews, Co-founder and Director of Social Impact.

For donors and investors Email: info@equileap.Org Website: http://www.Equileap.Org

Media Contact:

Development Cooperation, the Netherlands, said, "Gender Equality is a vital part of Dutch foreign policy. As part of this commitment, we have supported Equileap from the start. We believe it has an important role to play in bringing together companies, investors and governments to speed up the achievement of equality in the workplace and reduce poverty."

Prof. Paul Smeets, Maastricht University, added, "Social impact investing is slowly but surely gaining foothold in the financial world. The Sustainable Finance Group of Maastricht University, School of Business and Economics is proud to partner with Equileap in this unique research to help investors navigate the world of ethical investing."

The organization investigated over 3000 publicly listed companies in 23 countries across all sectors and ranked them based on 19 criteria covering leadership, career development, work life balance, equal pay, family leave as well as health and safety. This unique database was built in collaboration with the Sustainable Finance Group at Maastricht University and the ranking methodology was inspired by the United Nations Women's Empowerment Principles.

Research papers

1) Mickensy Global Institute report. The power of parity [http://www.Mckinsey.Com/global-themes/employment-and-growth/h ow-advancing-womens-equality-can-add-12-trillion-to-global-gro wth ](September 2015), $28 trillion (28%) could be added to global annual GDP by 2025 if full gender equality is achieved in the workforce

2) Peterson Institute for International Economics: Is Gender Diversity Profitable

[https://piie.Com/publications/working-papers/gender-diversity -profitable-evidence-global-survey ] ? (February 2016).

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