Corporate Governance Framework at Westfield GroupIntroductionCorporate governance has been perceived to refer to that blend of regulation, law and suitable voluntary practices in the private sector which are key in enabling the company to attract both human and financial capital, attain efficient performance and eventually, perpetuate itself by producing economic value to its stakeholders on a long-term basis, while at the same time, respecting the interests of the stakeholders and the wider society (Gregory, 2002, p. 1). The corporate governance framework has thus for a long time been perceived to play an integral role in the achievement of the aforementioned objectives in diverse corporations. Against this backdrop, this paper is a profound effort to explore the corporate governance framework at Westfield Group (WDC).
This will be through identifying at least three key features of Westfield Group Company’s corporate governance framework and how it positions the firm to engage with stakeholders on local and international levels. In a global context, the ethical challenges confronting this firm that may or may not be addressed with its current governance arrangements will be analyzed.
Nonetheless, it is imperative to briefly explore this company’s profile aimed at gaining an insight into the rudimentary foundation of its corporate governance framework. Company profileAccording to Morningstar (2011, p. 1), WDC is a shopping center group which vertically integrated and internally managed. Its primary activities entail ownership, design, development, construction, property management, funds/assets management, leasing and marketing undertakings. In the recent years, this company has embarked on extensive internationalization which has seen the diversification of its interests. In this regard, the corporation operates a wide alley of shopping center portfolios with expansive investment interests in 111 shopping centers across Australia, the United Kingdom, United States, New Zealand and Brazil.
This embodies approximately 23,400 retail outlets. WDC has continued to enlarge its portfolio which has been chiefly been through the development of super-regional centers. Since 2010, the corporation has been gradually minimizing its ownership interest in its assets. Acquisition and corporate undertakings have been regarded as less attractive when juxtaposed with development as a result of robust competition for centers which exhibit high quality. In addition, the funding for WDC is primarily sourced from debt, equity, strategic asset sales as well as joint venture partners (Morningstar, 2011, p.
1). Corporate governance frameworkand how it positions the firm to engage with stakeholders on local and international levelsSeveral chief features of WDC’s corporate governance will be explored in this section. Promotion of ethical and responsible decision makingMahdavi (2003, p. 2) determined that as the multi-national companies embark on global expansion and entering foreign market, there is a necessity and increased importance of ethical conduct of the employees as the officers. In this case, Morf (1999, p.
265) perceived ethics as the moral principle which individuals and collectives infuse in their decision-making processes which assists in moderating the ultimate outcome to conform to the diverse norms as embedded in their societies. In this corporate governance framework of WDC, there is a robust mechanism of promoting ethical and responsible decision making, eventually positioning the firm to engage with stakeholders on local and international levels.