The Cuatrecasas Foundation has announced a call for applications for the second edition of the Manuel Olivencia Award for Good Corporate Governance, which acknowledges the best corporate governance practices by Spanish listed companies.
Applications will be accepted from June 5 to July 9. An independent and prestigious panel of judges—chaired by Manuel Pizarro, chair of the Royal Academy of Case Law and Legislation—will choose the winning company.
Once the candidates have been selected, the panel will deliberate, considering the value of corporate governance actions, their importance in the decision-making process, their influence on third parties and whether the model is one to look up to. The award ceremony will be held at the end of October at the Madrid Stock Exchange Palace.
The award honors the memory of the late Manuel Olivencia, a professor of commercial law at the University of Seville, vice chair of Cuatrecasas and chair of the committee that drafted the first Spanish Code of Corporate Governance in 1998, known as the Olivencia Code. Macarena Olivencia, counsel at Cuatrecasas, is honorary chair and daughter of Manuel Olivencia, who died in January 2018.
Juan Aguayo, director of the Award and partner at Cuatrecasas, said, "Following the success of the first Manuel Olivencia Award, we are very excited. Transparency, ethics, diversity, protection of the business interest for the benefit of all shareholders, and sustainable growth are values that we must preserve. The Manuel Olivencia Award acknowledges the best companies, so they are models for others.”
About the panel of judges
The panel is made up of 15 members, all well-known and highly recognized individuals in Spain’s business and legal spheres, and is chaired by Manuel Pizarro, a permanent member of the Royal Academy of Case Law and Legislation.
The members of the panel are as follows: Juan Arena, former chair of Bankinter; Francisco Ballester, honorary partner at Cuatrecasas; Jaime Caruana, former governor of Banco de España; Eva Castillo, former chair of Telefónica Europa and former chair of Merrill Lynch Spain and Portugal; Adela Cortina, professor emeritus of ethics and political philosophy at the University of Valencia; Cristina Garmendia Mendizábal, chair of the Cotec Foundation; Ignacio Gil-Casares, former chair and founder of Spencer Stuart in Spain; Luis Isasi, chair and CEO of Morgan Stanley; Consuelo Madrigal, former attorney general; Francisco Pérez-Crespo Payá, partner at Cuatrecasas; Matías Rodríguez Inciarte, chair of Santander Universities; Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría, partner at Cuatrecasas and former deputy prime minister of Spain; Alfonso Sánchez-Tabernero, dean of the University of Navarra; and Antonio Zoido Martínez, chair of Bolsas y Mercados Españoles (the Spanish company dealing with the organizational aspects of the Spanish stock exchanges and financial markets) and chair of the Madrid stock exchange. Rafael Hidalgo, counsel at Cuatrecasas, is non-member secretary.
About the first edition of the Award
In its first edition, the Manuel Olivencia Award for Good Corporate Governance was awarded to the International Airlines Group (IAG) at a reception held at the Madrid Stock Exchange Palace on October 30, 2018.
The panel highlighted the composition of IAG’s board of directors, which has an ample majority of independent directors, including its chair. The panel also valued its investor relation policy, the duration of directors’ term of office (the directors are subject to yearly voting by the shareholders meeting), the selection and training policies for the directors, and the transparency in remuneration matters.
About Manuel Olivencia
Manuel Olivencia was an accomplished lawyer who combined the vocation of teaching from his chair of commercial law with the desire to share knowledge from his professional work in Cuatrecasas, as a partner of this firm. His impressive professional curriculum as a lawyer, university professor, undersecretary of education, commissioner of the Expo 92 in Seville and chair of the commission that drafted the Olivencia Code, is complemented by his personal trajectory and the indelible memories he left his family, friends, students, colleagues and everyone who knew and interacted with him.
He accumulated numerous awards and acknowledgments throughout his life, both in Spain and abroad, as a very cosmopolitan man that studied and lived in different countries. Manuel Olivencia received many awards, including several Grand Spanish Crosses, including the Civil Order of Alfonso X the Wise, Royal Order of Isabella the Catholic, the Cross of Military Merit, the Cross of Saint Raymond of Penyafort and the Cross of St. George of Catalonia. He was named Favorite Son of Ronda and Adopted Son of Seville, and received the Gold Medal of Ceuta, where he spent part of his childhood.
About the Cuatrecasas Foundation
The Cuatrecasas Foundation, created in 1991, focuses its activity on projects relating to rule of law and access to justice in line with the United Nations Global Compact and the Sustainable Development Goal 16: peace, justice and strong institutions. The foundation’s flagship activities are the Manuel Olivencia Award for Good Corporate Governance and the creation of the Spanish Pro Bono Foundation, a platform including a wide representation from the legal world to develop pro bono projects in Spain. The Cuatrecasas Foundation also continues to contribute to society by supporting social, cultural and financial initiatives.