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Corporate governance practices

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Declaration dated February 20, 2018

The structures for the management and supervision of the Company are as follows: 

Shareholders and Shareholders' Meeting

Shareholders exercise their rights at the shareholders' meeting. The annual shareholders' meeting of ADVA Optical Networking SE ("ADVA Optical Networking") is held within the first eight months of the financial year. The shareholders' meeting is chaired by the chairman of the supervisory board. The shareholders' meeting resolves all legally assigned matters (among other things: election of the members of the supervisory board, amendments to the articles of association, profit distribution, corporate actions). ADVA Optical Networking is under dual control of the management board and the supervisory board.

Supervisory Board

The principal role of the supervisory board is to appoint and to intensely advise and monitor the management board. At present, the supervisory board of ADVA Optical Networking consists of three members, whom had been elected by the shareholders in the shareholders' meeting. The supervisory board makes its resolutions with simple majority. Equality of votes leads to a resolution in favor of the vote of the chairman.

Objectives Regarding the Composition of the Supervisory Board

The supervisory board of the company defined a concept of diversity embedded in a comprehensive competency profile embedded and specified the following objectives regarding its composition:

  • At least one independent member of the Supervisory Board has to be a financial expert within the meaning of § 100 Abs. 5 AktG.
  • At least one member of the Supervisory Board should be from a country other than Germany or should have gained significant experience outside of Germany.
  • At least two members of the Supervisory Board should be completely independent from shareholders holding, directly or indirectly, more than 10% of the Company's shares outstanding.
  • At least one member of the Supervisory Board should have specific expertise in ADVA Optical Networking's industry.
  • The member of the supervisory board should be in their entirety familiar with the business sector ADVA is operating in (§ 100 Abs.5 AktG).
  • At least one member of the Supervisory Board should be a woman, at least one member should be a man.

In these objectives, the Supervisory Board combines the synergies of keeping the cast as diverse as possible with the advantages of a lean structure while retaining high levels of flexibility when it comes to filling any vacant chairs. As the composition of the Supervisory Board already meets the above-mentioned objectives, all the benefits of personal continuity, which are of particular importance in a committee of this size, can be leveraged at the same time. The Supervisory Board has refrained from determining age in favor of an international diversification, which is seen as the more important factor for the composition of the Group.

Currently, the above-mentioned objectives are fully achieved. Prior to the next recommendations on election, ADVA Optical Networking's Supervisory Board will review these objectives and adjust them if necessary.

Information on the Remuneration of the Supervisory Board

The compensation of ADVA Optical Networking SE's supervisory board members solely consists of a fixed component. On June 4, 2013, the annual shareholders' meeting resolved that each member of the supervisory board should receive reimbursement for expenses and a fixed compensation, payable at the end of each quarter.

Furthermore, ADVA Optical Networking bears the cost of pecuniary damage liability insurance for all members of the supervisory board, provided that the company has purchased such insurance for the members of the supervisory board. During 2017, no loans or advance payments were granted to members of the supervisory board. 

Provided that the 2017 annual shareholders' meeting approves the 2017 activities of the supervisory board, the total compensation payable to the members of the supervisory board for 2017 will be EUR 235 thousand, after EUR 215 thousand for 2016. 

Management Board

As the executive body of the company, the management board manages the affairs of the company and based on the provisions set forth in the German Stock Corporation Act (Aktiengesetz, AktG) needs to follow the interests and corporate policies of the company. The management board is appointed by the supervisory board and consists of four members. The management board consistently, promptly and extensively informs the supervisory board about all key aspects of the business development and the company strategy, as well as about potential risks.

Shareholdings of the Management and Supervisory Boards 

An overview of the shareholdings of the members of the management and supervisory boards, is included in the notes to the financial statements published in the annual and quarterly reports. In addition, ADVA Optical Networking publishes all directors' dealings in securities related to the company immediately after receipt of the corresponding notifications.

Transparency 

Providing consistent, comprehensive and prompt information to the public is a key priority for ADVA Optical Networking. Reporting about the development of the business and the related development of the financial position, net assets position and results of operations is provided in annual and quarterly reports, via press conferences, conference calls and interviews with media representatives. In addition, ADVA Optical Networking publishes press and ad-hoc releases as appropriate.

Equal Opportunities for All Employees

ADVA Optical Networking is an equal opportunity employer and has an ongoing commitment to the creation of a workplace free of discrimination and harassment. The Company recruits, hires, trains and promotes individuals in all job levels without regard to race, religion, ancestry, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, age, gender and physical or mental disability. ADVA Optical Networking is committed to a fair and equitable workplace where everyone is a respected and valued member of the team. The Company's core values (teamwork, execution, accountability and motivation) and leadership principles (integrity, honesty, decisiveness, respect) guide employees and managers in all business activities.

Accounting and Audit

The financial statements of ADVA Optical Networking SE (parent company financial statements) are prepared in accordance with the German Commercial Code (Handelsgesetzbuch, HGB), and since the fiscal year 2005, the consolidated financial statements of ADVA Optical Networking have been prepared in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). Once prepared by the management board, the parent company financial statements and the consolidated financial statements are reviewed by the external auditor and by the supervisory board, and are then approved by the supervisory board. With this approval, the parent company financial statements are adopted. The parent company financial statements and the consolidated financial statements are published within 90 days after the end of the financial year.

Control Metrics and Risk Management 

The strategic goals of the Company are: 

  • Growth & Profitability
  • Innovation
  • Operational Excellence
  • People

Based on these goals, the company is ultimately managed using the control metrics "revenues", "pro forma operating income" (pro forma = prior to non-cash charges related to stock compensation programs and amortization and impairment of goodwill and acquisition-related intangible assets), net liquidity and net promoter score (a non-financial control metric obtained by asking customers how likely it is that they would recommend ADVA Optical Networking to a colleague or friend). Risks which may work against the achievement of the annually redefined target values for these metrics are captured systematically, allowing to take counteractions at an early stage. Details of the risk management system of ADVA Optical Networking are disclosed in the current annual report in the risk report section of the group management report.