The drive for a data-driven global subsidiary services

This year, nine out of ten of the most valuable companies in the world are data companies or firms whose business model is heavily dependent on data.

Data is an omnipresent feature of all our lives. Over the last 30 years, as technological advancement has rapidly increased, so too has our approach to data management and analytics. Put simply, the companies with the ability to utilise data most effectively have a significant advantage over their competitors, as data feeds into key decision-making, enhancing the process and allowing businesses to make smarter and more informed decisions.

One does not have to look far to see the evidence of this. This year, nine out of ten of the most valuable companies in the world are data companies or firms whose business model is heavily dependent on data.

Data and the subsidiary governance professional

This reality is no less true for governance professionals. Governance is becoming a core challenge for all multinationals, and therefore forward-looking corporations are looking to supercharge their subsidiary governance.

In the wake of COVID-19, the financial and business world has seen its everyday normality turned upside down. Couple this with the ever-growing regulatory complexity faced by governance professionals, and we see the pressure general counsels, and secretarial teams are under to adapt to these changes and respond with innovations to governance processes.

For general counsels, there is also the challenge of demonstrating to internal stakeholders that you are moving with the times, and also being able to highlight that you are doing the best job you can; both in comparison to your peers and your industry as a whole. With regards to the world of global subsidiary governance, companies must have the ability to measure performance (in terms of total tasks, duration, and cost) across individual businesses, industries, jurisdictions and even regions.

A forward-looking challenge

The challenge for subsidiary governance professionals is clear. Thus far, data has been hard to come by and even where available has been incomplete. Available industry data has tended to be available only from a patchwork of regional third-party providers and is therefore non-centralised. Industry-wide data points have tended to be survey-driven and thus rarely provide a fully accurate and objective picture of the landscape.

In this sphere of ours, we are only now just starting to see the incredible power that data can have in our industry. It is not just a ‘nice-to-have’; it is a necessity. How will subsidiary governance change after the pandemic? As various players in the industry carve the path for a sustainable new normal, one thing is clear – this direction will be informed by data, and players who have a framework to gather and process data related to the practice are expected to provide clear leadership.

Kariem Abdellatif, Head of Citco Global Subsidiary Governance Services

As Head of Citco Global Subsidiary Governance Services (GSGS), and a member of the divisional Management Team of the Citco’s Governance Services Division, Kariem has almost three decades of experience in the international corporate and trust sector.

Since 2006, Kariem has pioneered the development of Citco’s GSGS Line of Business, growing the team to a headcount of nearly 200 with a reach spanning more than 140 jurisdictions.

Global governance has emerged as an increasingly important strategic discipline, propelled by the growth in global interconnectedness and regulatory complexity. Citco GSGS is a crucial strategic partner for global firms as they seek to ensure compliance across complex portfolios of entities.

As an innovator in the sector, Kariem’s thought leadership on governance and regulatory issues is valued by a number of publications including ICSA’s Governance + Compliance, and ACC The Docket. He has also spoken at various events, including at the Hong Kong Institute of Chartered Secretaries.

Citco Global Subsidiary Governance Services (Citco GSGS) is a technology-enabled service platform set-up specifically to allow firms to better harmonise the administration of their global entities. Revolving around Citco GSGS’ task management system, a proprietary technology ecosystem, our business model brings together experienced client service teams, reliable workflows and next-generation reporting into a seamless client experience. You will have access to real-time updates on everything from the status of annual obligations and tasks in progress to spend reports, as well as customisable analytics.

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Subsidiary Governance Summit, 20 Feb 2024 Download this year's course catalogue

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