Tech investor Chris Ridd joins BoardPro board urging startup founders to focus on governance

Former Xero executive and serial tech investor Chris Ridd has joined the BoardPro Card.

The New Zealand software start-up, founded in 2015 by Brett Herkt, helps companies improve meeting room productivity and create boards that work better with processes, workflows and improved advice. Herkt, the CEO of startups, developed BoardPro in partnership with leading independent directors and CEOs. He designed it for small and medium businesses, nonprofits, and schools.

Ridd, who sits on several startup boards, said he was “super impressed” with BoardPro and the way it streamlined meetings to get to what was important.

“BoardPro’s smart and beautifully designed software dramatically reduces the administrative burden of managing and preparing for board meetings and all the governance processes that flow from them,” he said.

Its appeal is also to simplify the complexity of corporate governance for the founders of startups.

“When I joined Xero in 2011, one of the first things I did was undertake the foundations of director positions with the Australian Institute of Company Directors. It taught me the importance of corporate governance and made me aware of my obligations as a corporate director, ”said Ridd.

“However, for most people in tech startups, SMEs and indeed the NFP space, AICD and equivalent industry bodies can be expensive and much of the content can be both complex and arid.

“Corporate governance is not everyone’s favorite subject. Discussion on operational frameworks, internal controls, delegation of authority, fiduciary duties. Compliance and risk management aren’t on every entrepreneur’s list when they start a startup. And it can be a mysterious and often intimidating subject for many. “

Ridd compared BoardPro’s solution to how Xero approached the accounting industry, including leading the move to the cloud and developing an ecosystem beyond software.

“One thing that BoardPro has focused on is developing easy to read, understand and apply guidance and templates, all suitable for an audience unfamiliar with corporate governance,” he said. -he declares.

“Most tech startups tend to use consumer apps and email from Microsoft or Google to manage board documents, agendas, minutes, and governance processes. These tools do the job, but after a while you will usually find that the process becomes extremely inefficient.

“As boards only meet several times a year, engage sporadically, and nowadays often remotely, the standard tools make the task of planning, recording, monitoring and administering the board process quite enough. frustrating. “

Ridd said day one governance is often overlooked, but he believes it is absolutely critical to a company’s long-term success.

“It actually allows the founder and / or CEO with advice from the board to focus on innovation, strategy, growth and execution. A good board of directors works in partnership with the founder (s) to create the future. It does so by ensuring a strong framework based on high standards of integrity, transparency and accountability, ”he said.

“Governance from the start is more important than ever and can in fact be a competitive advantage in attracting capital and investors who seek solace from founders who understand and embrace it early on. “

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