The Lowdown on Becoming a Company Director
3rd November 2018
A publication launched by Knowledge Transfer Ireland (KTI) aims to provide guidance to those considering taking up positions as company directors and observers in spin-outs and start-ups. The main obligations and liabilities for a company director with regards to the Companies Act 2014 are clearly outlined along with information about what constitutes a de facto or shadow directorship. The role of company observers, who are typically appointed by a company’s shareholders to ensure prudent running of the organisation, along with any potential liabilities are also detailed in the short, easy-to-navigate guide.
Dr. Alison Campbell, Director of KTI today said: “We have developed this simple guide to assist individuals who may be taking on a directorship or observer role, and for any organisation considering appointing one of its staff in these types of positions. We hope that it will be particularly helpful for those involved with spin-out companies from research performing organisations [RPOs].
“Ireland has a very strong spin-out sector, with 113 thriving active spin-out companies in the state last year supporting at least 1600 jobs. In 2017 a further 21 new spin-out companies were formed. Good governance and active support for these spin-outs by founders and RPOs is an important part of their success. This guide has been prepared to help those who are looking to engage in the Board of companies understand their statutory and fiduciary duties and the expectations and risks involved.
“Anyone looking to take up the role of director or observer should ensure that they are familiar with their duties and responsibilities, as the consequences of a breach of duty may be far reaching. We hope that it proves a useful resource in deciding whether to seek and exercise director or observer appointment rights.”
The publication is the latest in the KTI Practical Guides series, a resource for those involved in research commercialisation with and from Irish research performing organisations. Relevant to companies, entrepreneurs, investors and researchers, the KTI Practical Guides are intended to explain common issues and the considerations that might apply.
The KTI Practical Guide: “The Role of Directors & Observers” is freely available to download now from here>>