Governance Initiatives

Message from Board Chair

Photo:Lead Independent Director and Board Chair Masayoshi Nakamura
Masayoshi Nakamura Lead Independent Director
and Board Chair

Supporting bold and timely risk-taking by the management team

Two years have passed since the launch of the Co-President structure in April 2021. During this time, our Group successfully built a leaner organization resilient to drastic supply chain changes caused by the pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and other events. We also made sound progress in further solidifying the foundation of Asset Assembler model designed to drive the Group’s growth to the next level.

Still, further risk-taking is vital to our pursuit of MSV.
There are three types of risks that Nippon Paint Holdings should consider taking: namely, the risks associated with actions to enhance the value of existing businesses and assets, risks associated with building up new businesses and assets(i.e., acquisitions), and risks related to the management of our balance sheet, including financing from capital markets. The Board of Directors, in its oversight role, carries the mission of working together with management to determine where we aspire to be in the future as a company.
Accordingly, Board discussions, while remaining mindful of solving current challenges, are shifting toward discourses on growth strategies for a more sustainable leap forward.
The Board utilizes opportunities, such as brainstorming sessions on long-term roadmaps and offsite meetings for roadmap implementation, to frequently exchange views and share common ground with management. Through such activities, it encourages the management team to take risks in a timely and appropriate manner.

Our Board comprises nine Directors (including six Independent Directors) with experience and background in corporate management, global business operations, and M&A. To meet the responsibilities entrusted by our shareholders, the Board seeks to facilitate risk-taking that leads to MSV.

Of the Three Committees, the Nominating Committee is responsible for consistent assessment and verification of the Board’s composition. The objective is to provide the Board with the resources to accurately understand the risks related to actions proposed by the management, flexibly measure the risk tolerance of our Company, and guide the management team to the right direction.

The Compensation Committee has the task of exploring an ideal form of executive compensation. Such compensation framework should empower members of the management to confidently take risks without being frequently and uselessly affected by the ever-changing business environment. It should also allow them to align their interests with those of our shareholders.

Finally, our internal control system based on mutual trust is the Group’s most essential underpinning that enables aggressive risk-taking by the management team. This system allows the management team to properly identify risks inherent in existing businesses and assets and to take appropriate actions. The Audit Committee makes full use of the “Audit on Audit” framework to maintain effectiveness of the internal audit process, which is the backbone of mutual trust that unites our Group.

As the Lead Independent Director and Board Chair, I am committed to mobilizing the collective knowledge and experience of the nine Directors to guide our Board through deliberations and decision-making, encouraging all Directors to contribute to the Board to their fullest capabilities. Every effort will be made to thoroughly fulfill our duties toward the Group’s achievement of persistent value creation under our Asset Assembler model, and to ensure protection of minority shareholders’ interests.

September 30, 2023

Message from Nominating Committee Chairperson

Photo:Independent Director Nominating Committee Chairperson Hisashi Hara
Hisashi Hara Independent Director
Nominating Committee Chairperson

Ensuring the effectiveness of the Board of Directors in order to contribute to MSV

Following the shift to the Co-President structure,Co-Presidents have executed numerous corporate actions focused on MSV, consistently delivering results despite the rapidly changing business environment, while making steady progress preparing measures for our Group’s leap to the next stage.

The Board of NPHD, in its oversight role, is tasked with the maintenance of an effective Board constitution that allows proper supervision and advice, encouraging appropriate and bold risk-taking by the management team without slowing down its decision-making process. For this, the Board must have the ability to accurately analyze where the potential benefits and risks lie in the various actions the Group takes, along with the degree of impact such benefits and risks present. In this respect, the
Nominating Committee should not be overly swayed by diversity for the sake of formality or by planned agendas. Rather, its mission is to select Director candidates capable of giving valuable advice in light of the Group’s business growth and Directors moving forward, and to deliver true diversity that can maximize Board performance.

To accomplish this, every year, the Nominating Committee evaluates the effectiveness of the Board, identifying the status and issues surrounding the Board at that given time, and comprehensively evaluating the qualities and contributions of each Director. And taking this assessment into consideration, we select candidates from within and outside our Group, making use of personal relationships and different lines of communication. We also constantly share information with the Directors concerning the proper composition of the Board in order to get on the same page regarding this important point.

The Nominating Committee will continue to contribute to MSV by ensuring the effectiveness of the Board and creating a Board composition that can encourage and support appropriate and bold risk-taking by the management team.

September 30, 2023

Message from Compensation Committee Chairperson

Photo:Independent Director Compensation Committee Chairperson Lim, Hwee Hua
Lim, Hwee Hua Independent Director
Compensation Committee Chairperson

Our roles to attract and train excellent talent

Nippon Paint Holdings, as a business with maximizing shareholder value (MSV) at its core, is not very different from many multi-national groups – its reliance on talent. Talent recruitment and retention is everything. Engendering appropriate compensation schemes is one of the necessary elements.

I am gratified to note that much thought had gone into the compensation philosophy — setting of goals, incentives for performance and ultimately accountability to all shareholders.

To attract talent, the company’s vision, mission and strategy must be clearly articulated. Employees must feel responsible for fulfilling this vision and contribute towards refining the strategy along the way. Taking ownership of business strategy would be crucial.

Secondly, compensation must be market-competitive. Even as employees accept a variable component, with increased seniority, this portion must accord with performance and be regarded as fair. Employees must be motivated to give off their very best and consistently.
Setting key performance targets annually and holding employees accountable would be necessary. When used appropriately, long-term incentives can have a powerful effect on aligning longer-term interests with the company’s.

Thirdly, having an appropriate compensation scheme is insufficient. Some form of career development within a meaningful cluster of businesses is necessary, involving an element of training or even re-skilling in technological innovation and market dynamics. Equally important would be a good understanding of the geopolitical influences at play.

The Compensation Committee will work closely with the Nominating Committee on succession planning for senior management.
The goal is to ultimately breed a corps of independent-minded, committed and competent talent individuals.

September 30, 2023

Message from Audit Committee Chairperson

Photo:Independent Director Audit Committee Chairperson Masataka Mitsuhashi
Masataka Mitsuhashi Independent Director
Audit Committee Chairperson

Contributing to MSV by enhancing the effectiveness of the “Audit on Audit” system

Every year, the Audit Committee performs a selfevaluation of the effectiveness of our audit activities.
The Committee reports to the Board of Directors the results of this evaluation and improvement status of the items that require improvements on a regular basis.
Through this process the Audit Committee shares information and exchanges opinions with Directors who are not Audit Committee members, and this raises the objectiveness of our self-evaluation.

In FY2023, based on the results of the FY2022 evaluation, the Audit Committee has been continuously working on strengthening “Audit on Audit” framework in the Group, which is based on the results of internal and external audits (see the next page). In March 2023, we held the first in-person Group Audit Committee (GAC) meeting which facilitated direct communications among the people who are responsible for our Group’s internal audits. Participants examined the results of risk assessment of the PCGs and confirmed the “Audit on Audit” approach. We also discussed common issues among PCGs, such as cyber security and the risk profiles of newly acquired companies. By bringing everyone together, this meeting became a valuable occasion for internal auditors to exchange information about the best practices, to openly discuss various problems they have and to have better communication. We will continue to reinforce relationships rooted in mutual trust and maintain an effective auditing system that can contribute to MSV based on Asset Assembler model.

Peter Kirby, an Independent Director, was appointed as a member of the Audit Committee in FY2023. I am confident that his knowledge,professional skills and management experience of the global paint industry will further enhance the effectiveness of the “Audit on Audit” system.

September 30, 2023

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