The Board of Directors is ultimately responsible for the organization of Ericsson and the management of Ericsson’s operations. The Board of Directors develops guidelines and instructions for day-to-day operations, managed by the President and CEO. The President and CEO ensures that the Board is updated regularly on events of importance to the Group. This includes updates on business development, results, financial position and the liquidity of the Group.
According to the Articles of Association, the Board of Directors shall consist of no less than five and no more than twelve directors, with no more than six deputies. In addition, under Swedish law, trade unions have the right to appoint three directors and their deputies to the Board.
Directors serve from the close of one AGM to the close of the next, but can serve any number of consecutive terms.
The President and CEO may be elected director of the Board, but under the Swedish Companies Act the President of a public company may not be elected Chairman of the Board.
Ericsson maintains rules and regulations regarding conflicts of interest. Directors are disqualified from participating in any decision regarding agreements between themselves and Ericsson. The same applies to agreements between Ericsson and any third party or legal entity in which the Board member has an interest.
The Audit Committee has implemented a procedure on related-party transactions and a pre-approval process for non-audit services carried out by the external auditor.
The Board of Directors consists of 12 Directors, including the Chairman of the Board, elected by the shareholders at the AGM 2013 for the period until the close of the AGM 2014. It also includes three employee representatives, each with a deputy, appointed by the trade unions for the same period of time. The President and CEO, Hans Vestberg, is the only Board member who was also a member of Ericsson’s management during 2012.
Pursuant to the Swedish Companies Act, the Board of Directors has adopted a work procedure that outlines rules for the distribution of tasks between the Board and its Committees as well as between the Board, its Committees and the President and CEO. This complements the regulation in the Swedish Companies Act and in the Articles of Association of the Company. The work procedure is reviewed, evaluated and adopted by the Board as required and at least once a year.
The Board of Directors and its Committees are subject to a variety of independence requirements. Ericsson applies independence rules in applicable Swedish law, the Code and applicable US securities laws, SEC rules and the NASDAQ New York Stock Market Rules. However, Ericsson can rely on exemptions from certain US requirements. The composition of the Board of Directors meets all applicable independence criteria.
The Board of Directors has established three Committees: the Audit Committee, the Finance Committee and the Remuneration Committee. Members of each Committee are appointed for one year amongst the Board members.
The task of the Committees is mainly to prepare matters for final resolution by the Board. However, the Board has authorized each Committee to determine certain issues in limited areas. It may also on occasion provide extended authorization to the Committees to determine specific matters.
If deemed appropriate, the Board of Directors and each Committee have the right to engage external expertise, either in general or in respect to specific matters.
Prior to the Board meetings, each Committee submits to the Board minutes from Committee meetings. The Chairman of the Committee also reports on the Committee work at each Board meeting.
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