Board succession and diversity

Succession planning

Executive succession

During 2019, the Chief Executive Officer led the Executive Committee in the development and implementation of a detailed succession plan for each member of the Executive Committee. The arrangements include the identification of internal talent for key operational and group roles, development programmes for those identified as having the potential to advance and allowing for external recruitment where required. The plan was considered and approved by the full Board and leaves the Company in a strong position to move forward with continuity in its executive team.

Independent succession

With the retirement of Dr Ronald Goode in May 2018, Hikma completed the 2014 succession plan which related to Independent Directors who joined when the Group listed. During 2018, the Committee developed new arrangements for the succession of the current Independent Directors and considered candidates for additional appointments, with a particular emphasis on gaining additional US healthcare experience, as well as enhancing gender diversity. This process led to the appointment of Cynthia Schwalm as an Independent Non-Executive Director with effect from 1 June 2019. The Committee is committed to ensuring an independent majority on the Board and enhancing diversity.

The Company Secretary has developed a tailored induction programme for Cynthia, including presentations and advice from external experts. During 2019, the Committee will further develop the plans for medium-term succession for the Independent Directors. This will include consideration of my roles, being the positions of Senior Independent Director and Chair of this Committee. 

The Committee’s policy on tenure is that the Independent Non-Executive Directors are normally expected to serve for a period of up to nine years. Their appointments are formally reviewed after three years and at six years a more rigorous review process is undertaken.


Hikma’s diversity policy applies to the whole Group, including the
Board. Hikma’s inclusive workplace welcomes different cultures,
perspectives, and experiences from across the globe. Hikma is committed to employing and engaging talented people, irrespective of their race, colour, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, present or past history of mental or physical disability and any other factors not related to a person’s ability to perform the relevant role.
One of the three pillars of the Group’s strategy is to ‘Inspire and enable our people’. The Group’s policy and approach to diversity, succession and appointments are a core part of this pillar. Hikma as successful empowerment and talent development programmes to help all employees make the most of their potential. This diversity policy has been included in our updated Code of Conduct and communicated to all employees. The Board considers that it has demonstrated strong ethnic diversity since the formation of Hikma and that this diversity continues to be evident today.