IRM and CMA Competition Law Risk Guide focuses spotlight on director disqualification risk

The latest risk guide published by the Institute of Risk Management (IRM) and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) features up-to-date Case Studies with key learnings and examples of Best Practice to help risk professionals navigate UK competition law. In essence, the guide promotes a culture of compliance led from the top down.

The updated Competition Law Risk Guide follows the first director disqualification because competition law was broken. The managing director of an online poster supplier gave an undertaking not to act as a director of any UK company for five years for their part in an online price-fixing cartel.

Any director of a company that breaks competition law can be disqualified from acting as a director of a company – or from carrying out other specified roles in relation to a company – for a period of up to 15 years.

The Competition Law Risk Guide has been developed as a joint IRM/CMA project, with the various contributors being senior figures drawn from across both organisations.

In tandem with the updated risk guide, the CMA has also published a one-page, 60-second summary looking specifically at director disqualification with advice for company directors and produced a series of animated videos explaining the main principles of competition law and how they affect businesses.

Nicola Crawford CFIRM, chairman of the IRM, commented: “We welcomed the opportunity to work with the Competition and Markets Authority to produce this document for risk professionals on the risks of contravening UK competition law. Competition benefits us all. It creates free and transparent markets in which to do business in an environment where competition is fair and honest. The document offers detail on some powerful recent and relevant Case Studies to highlight unacceptable business practices and show just how easy it can be to enter into difficulties if the risks are not properly understood and managed.”

David Currie, the CMA’s chairman, stated: “I’m delighted that we’re working with the IRM again to put the spotlight on the significant risks companies and their directors face if they don’t play by fair rules in business. Company directors have a special responsibility to be well-informed about their company practices and have a critical role to play in ensuring a business complies with the law. In light of this, I want to see anti-competitive behaviour being taken as seriously by UK businesses and Boards of Directors as the risks prevailing around bribery, fraud, Health and Safety and cyber crime.”

*Copies of the Competition Law Risk Guide are available online at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/competition-law-risk-a-short-guide

**There will be a half-day seminar running in London on 23 February. Steve Preece from the CMA will talk delegates through key learnings from the CMA’s latest competition law cases and discuss how CMA guidance can help businesses to remain on the right side of competition law. For further details access: https://www.theirm.org/events/risk-perspectives/cartel-risks-%E2%80%93-why-boards-need-to-advocate-compliance.aspx

About the Author
Brian Sims BA (Hons) Hon FSyI, Editor, Risk UK (Pro-Activ Publications) Beginning his career in professional journalism at The Builder Group in March 1992, Brian was appointed Editor of Security Management Today in November 2000 having spent eight years in engineering journalism across two titles: Building Services Journal and Light & Lighting. In 2005, Brian received the BSIA Chairman’s Award for Promoting The Security Industry and, a year later, the Skills for Security Special Award for an Outstanding Contribution to the Security Business Sector. In 2008, Brian was The Security Institute’s nomination for the Association of Security Consultants’ highly prestigious Imbert Prize and, in 2013, was a nominated finalist for the Institute's George van Schalkwyk Award. An Honorary Fellow of The Security Institute, Brian serves as a Judge for the BSIA’s Security Personnel of the Year Awards and the Securitas Good Customer Award. Between 2008 and 2014, Brian pioneered the use of digital media across the security sector, including webinars and Audio Shows. Brian’s actively involved in 50-plus security groups on LinkedIn and hosts the popular Risk UK Twitter site. Brian is a frequent speaker on the conference circuit. He has organised and chaired conference programmes for both IFSEC International and ASIS International and has been published in the national media. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk UK at Pro-Activ Publications in July 2014 and as Editor of The Paper (Pro-Activ Publications' dedicated business newspaper for security professionals) in September 2015. Brian was appointed Editor of Risk Xtra at Pro-Activ Publications in May 2018.

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