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Title: A case study of corporate governance practice of SMEs listed on ChiNext, China's Growth Enterprise Market
Author: Ajibadé, Mimi
ISNI:       0000 0004 5346 735X
Awarding Body: SOAS, University of London
Current Institution: SOAS, University of London
Date of Award: 2014
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Launched in October 2009, ChiNext provides finance for hi-tech and innovative SMEs from China's Strategic Emerging Industries. SMEs with families, individuals and groups of individuals as controlling shareholders dominate listings. Employing both qualitative and quantitative research methods with a socio-legal approach, this thesis examines the legal and regulatory framework and practice at company level emerging in a market dominated by private 'owner-managers'. The research makes three main contributions as follows. Firstly, the thesis finds that social norms such as Chinese networks (guanxi) and Confucian filial piety (xiaoshun) play an important role in internal governance privately listed SMEs in ChiNext. Interestingly, large individual pre-IPO subscriber who hold non-executive directorships have the potential to and do constrain controlling shareholders through the use of guanxi arising from being key start-up or early investors in the company. Their effectiveness as a corporate governance mechanism may depend on how aligned their interests are with minority shareholders. Equally, filial piety plays a key internal governance role in (conflicting and complementary) parallel to the legal and regulatory corporate governance framework, not only in family-run listed companies but also in other private and State listed companies. Secondly, the thesis finds that bottom-up corporate governance innovations occur in privately listed companies on ChiNext by adapting existing institutions or adopting nonmandatory requirements to their corporate framework. Results of the research demonstrates the emergence of a new category of supervisors sitting on the supervisory board at company level not expressly provided for under Chinese Company Law or corporate governance regulations. Finally, the research observes two key mechanisms in support regulatory enforcement in the private listed sector, namely the media as a corporate governance watchdog on ChiNext based on its state role as public opinion supervisor (yulun jiandu), and China's public whistle-blowing system (jubao) as a voice for investors and stakeholders alike.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral