Hamamatsu Photonics has established the basic policy on corporate governance as the foundation of its corporate governance. At the heart of this policy is the following management philosophy.
We are convinced that light holds unlimited possibilities.
Known as photonics, light technology is fundamental to most markets with even further advancements underway. However, the nature of light is still yet to be fully revealed.
Every day, we strive to pursue the unknown and unexplored. Based on new technologies and knowledge exploring new opportunities, we create markets that contribute to a better society and a healthier planet.
We will continue to generously invest in both R&D and facilities, as well as expand our business and increase our corporate value.
People, technology and knowledge are the foundation of our success. Together, we will advance and grow to the next level. We seek a collaborative spirit and learn from each other’s strengths. Through this spirit, known as “Wa” 「和」 in Japanese, our endeavor is the continuous improvement of ourselves, united under one global entity.
- Photon is our business -
We dedicate our efforts to the advancements of science and technology for a better society and a healthier planet.
We will pursue unknown and unexplored areas to create new markets harnessing photonics technologies.
Challenge “We never stop trying.”
The basic policy on corporate governance is established and revised by the Board of Directors.
We have adopted a company structure with an Audit & Supervisory Board. As of December 16,2022, we have ten directors (four of whom are outside directors) and four Audit & Supervisory Board Members (two of whom are outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members).
The Audit & Supervisory Board plays a critical role in the effective functioning of Hamamatsu Photonics. Composed of two Audit & Supervisory Board Members who are former employees and two outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members , the Audit & Supervisory Board cooperates in its audits with external accounting auditors to ensure effectiveness. The reason for appointing former employees as Audit & Supervisory Board Members is that they have inherited our corporate culture. For the continuing development of the Company, each Audit & Supervisory Board Member conducts audits on an independent, individual basis, informed by a thorough understanding of our corporate culture and operations.
The Board of Directors is the highest decision-making body of Hamamatsu Photonics after the general meeting of shareholders. We have formulated rules for the Board of Directors and have established standards for agenda items in the regulations on official authority. The Board of Directors meets once a month and on an as-needed basis to ensure swift decision-making and transparency, as well as to supervise the execution of duties by the directors. To facilitate extensive discussions, materials on agenda to be resolved by the Board of Directors are distributed to the directors and Audit & Supervisory Board members prior to the Board of Directors meeting.
The Audit & Supervisory Board meets approximately six times a fiscal year. The Audit & Supervisory Board formulates the auditing policy and implementation plan. Based on these directions, each Audit & Supervisory Board Member attends important meetings within the Company, including meetings of the Board of Directors, to assess management performance, and audits the execution of duties by the directors by conducting interviews in each department. In addition, the Audit & Supervisory Board meets with external accounting auditors, regularly or on an as-needed basis, to exchange information.
Hamamatsu Photonics has appointed outside directors since 1987, bringing the total to two in 2015, three in 2020 and four in 2021. Outside directors are required to have a high level of insight into technology and management. We have also appointed outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members since 1987, and in 2004 established a two-outside-Audit-&-Supervisory-Board-Members system. Outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members include individuals with considerable knowledge of finance and accounting. When appointing outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members, the Company actively and concretely discloses its interest in the appointment to ensure their independence, thereby increasing transparency and gaining the understanding of shareholders.
One concern sometimes voiced about outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members is that they may lack insight into the internal workings of the Company, preventing them from making informed decisions on the agenda to be resolved at meetings of the Board of Directors and other meetings. To ensure that outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members can function effectively at meetings of the Board of Directors, we implement the following measures.
・Advance distribution of materials on matters for resolution
・Prior explanation of the agenda as necessary
・Reporting of views of internal Audit & Supervisory Board Members
We have also appointed Kenji Yoshida, Director and Division Director, Administration Headquarters, as a corresponding director for outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members.
We have also appointed Ken Nozaki, Managing Executive Officer, as a corresponding officer for outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members.
The general meeting of shareholders convenes in mid- or late December every year for the fiscal year ending in September. Although many shareholders attend the general meeting every year, to encourage broader participation and facilitate the exercise of voting rights, we are taking the following measures.
December 2022: 61
December 2021: 39
December 2020: 31
December 2019: 531
December 2018: 533
December 2017: 602
In December 2020, we introduced the Executive Officer system to revitalize the Board of Directors, accelerate management decision-making, and strengthen the Board of Directors's supervisory functions.
This will allow the Board of Directors to devote time to essential discussions such as future planning, divisional strategy, and M&A, as well as strengthen the supervisor's position.
In addition, many of the decisions previously made by the Board of Directors have been transferred to Executive Officers or the Board of Executive Officers, enabling flexible decision-making with the aim of expanding our core businesses.
The Board of Executive Officers is held once a week. The first half of the Board of Executive Officers is composed of our executives such as Executive Officers, Audit & Supervisory Board Members, executive managers, and managers. In addition to sharing information, we are considering important matters other than the Board of Executive Officers matters for resolution from a multifaceted perspective.
And the second half of the Board of Executive Officers consists of Executive Officers, Audit & Supervisory Board Members, and executive managers, which resolve the matters delegated by the Board of Directors and discuss the essential matters of the Company.
To enhance the effectiveness of directors, since 2016 the members of the Board of Directors are asked to conduct self-evaluations. All directors and Audit & Supervisory Board Members are subject to a five-point evaluation and a free-form descriptive questionnaire regarding the composition, operation and responsibilities of the Board of Directors. The results are reported at meetings of the Board of Directors and used as appropriate to improve the Board’s operation.
Since September 2020, we have outsourced the evaluation of effectiveness to a third party in order to increase transparency and objectivity.
We encourage directors and Audit & Supervisory Board Members to conduct voluntary self-training to enhance their ability to fulfill their duties. We also obtain training from outside sources.
2021: Revised Corporate Governance Code
2021: ESG management
2019: Patent Infringement Proceedings
2019: Cost of capital
2018: Directors’ duties and responsibilities
The Articles of Incorporation stipulate that the term of directors of Hamamatsu Photonics is one year and the term of Audit & Supervisory Board Members is four years. Directors and Audit & Supervisory Board Members are elected when attending shareholders with a majority of voting rights approve their appointment at a general meeting of shareholders in which at least one third of the total voting rights of all shareholders are exercised by the attending shareholders.
Candidates for director are required to have deep knowledge of photonics, a desire to explore the frontiers of light and an entrepreneurial spirit with passion for a new industry. To put these qualities into practice, candidates should be capable of implementing bold reforms, backed by leadership and teamwork. Based on these criteria, the Company selects candidates through a comprehensive assessment of their performance, achievements, insight, character, ethics and other factors. After obtaining feedback from outside directors as well, we select candidates at meetings of the Board of Directors. We also receive advice from female outside directors on how to promote the success of female employees.
Candidates for Audit & Supervisory Board Members are required to fulfill their duties from an independent and objective standpoint. Candidates should be individuals of outstanding character, insight and abilities, abundant experience, and high ethical standards. At least one Audit & Supervisory Board Member is appointed with appropriate knowledge of finance and accounting.
Beginning with the December 2017 regular general meeting of shareholders, the Company discloses its reasons for nominating candidates for directors in the reference documents for the notice of convocation, both for inside and outside candidates.
In determining director candidates, we consult with the Nominating and Compensation Committee in advance to obtain their consent in order to increase fairness, transparency and objectivity and to gain the trust of our shareholders. The Nominating and Compensation Committee stipulates that a majority of the Nominating and Compensation Committee shall be outside directors and that we shall respect the reports of the Nominating and Compensation Committee.
To fulfill its corporate social responsibility on a sustainable basis, Hamamatsu Photonics believes it is vital to take effective steps to cultivate successors, not only for the president but also for directors. However, the Company has no officially stipulated procedures for cultivating successors.
Instead, the Company relies on a bottom-up process of manager development. A characteristic of the Company that has continued since its foundation is that each small manufacturing-group unit or “segment” is required to be profitable in its own right. Multiple small segments combine to comprise a manufacturing department, and the manufacturing departments combine to form a business division. Personnel in charge of each unit are asked to carry out management with an awareness of profitability. This arrangement enables managers to acquire the awareness and qualities they need to serve the Company as management professionals.
Hamamatsu Photonics requires directors to strive forward with a medium- to long-term perspective, rather than merely with a short-term mindset. Therefore, we see it appropriate to put fixed compensation at the base of the Company’s compensation scheme for directors. We have also introduced stock-based compensation with restrictions on transfer as part of the Company’s compensation scheme. The purpose of this is to encourage our directors to hold the Company’s stock on a long-term, stable basis, with the intention that they share the same perspectives as our shareholders and contribute to the sustainable growth of Hamamatsu Photonics’ corporate value.
The amount of individual remuneration for Directors is determined by the Board of Directors after consultation with the Nominating Compensation Committee.
|Compensation of directors||Cash Remuneration:60 million yen or less per month
(10 million yen or less per month for outside directors)
|Determined at the December 17, 2021 regular general meeting of shareholders|
|Restricted Stock Remuneration:200 milliom yen or less per year
(Excluding Outside Directors)
|Determined at the December 20, 2019 regular general meeting of shareholders|
|Compensation of Audit & Supervisory Board Members||10 million yen or less per month||Determined at the December 17, 2021 regular general meeting of shareholders|
The Company pursues the unknown where no one has yet explored. By leveraging photonics technology to establish new industries and reach for the world's highest levels of manufacturing excellence, we build enterprise value and contribute to the development of science and technology. However, only a small fraction of the nature of light has been elucidated. We explore fields not yet explained. Based on the knowledge generated by that inquiry, we require our Directors and employees to seek potential applications. Based on this idea, the Company requires Directors to pursue outcomes from a medium to long-term rather than a short-term perspective. Therefore, the Company considers that fixed remuneration is most suitable as the base remuneration for Directors.
On the other hand, as Directors are obligated to fulfill their commitments to our shareholders, aiming to contribute to continuous improvement in corporate value from the same position as our shareholders by promoting the long-term, stable holding of the Company’s stock by Directors, in January 2020 we introduced stock-based remuneration (restricted stock-based remuneration).
As a result, remuneration for Directors of the Company (excluding Outside Directors) is composed of fixed remuneration and stock-based remuneration. Regarding the amount of Director remuneration, fixed monthly remuneration established based on position is decided at the Board of Directors meetings and paid monthly. Furthermore, stock-based remuneration set at around 15% of total Director remuneration is decided for each Director at the Board of Directors meetings and paid prior with a 30-year transfer restriction period from the record date. Additionally, only fixed remuneration is paid as remuneration for Outside Directors.
Note: The Company submits the list of all outside directors and outside Audit & Supervisory Board Members to the Tokyo Stock Exchange as independent officers, as stipulated in the securities listing regulations of the Tokyo Stock Exchange.
Our officers and employees will not engage in any conduct that conflicts with the interests of the Company for the benefit of an individual (including conflicts of interest and potential one) without just cause.
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