The Corporate Library LLC and GovernanceMetrics International Inc. merged on July 22, according to a joint statement by the two corporate governance research companies.
Terms weren't disclosed.
Richard A. Bennett, president and CEO of The Corporate Library, was named to the same positions at the combined entity, Governance Holdings Co.
Howard Sherman, CEO of GMI, was named executive director and head of global business development for the new entity.
The Corporate Library and GMI will continue to operate separately under their current names and at their respective locations of Portland, Maine, and New York. They also will maintain their organizational operations and existing staffing levels, said Mr. Bennett and Mr. Sherman in separate interviews.
Gavin Anderson, who was GMI chairman and its former CEO, will join the board of directors of Governance Holdings and continue to play a role in its business development.
Also on the new board will be Messrs. Sherman and members of The Corporate Library's current board — Mr. Bennett, Nell Minow, Robert A.G. Monks, John Higgins and Ric Marshall.
John Jarrett, GMI research director, was named to the added role of GMI chief operating officer.
“Since at least last year, Richard and I have been talking about how our businesses were complementary and how we always respected one another's work and (thought) perhaps there was a way we could do more for our clients,” Mr. Sherman said. “We have very complementary product offerings, and our respective clients don't have a huge overlap.”
“The businesses will continue to operate as they have been,” Mr. Sherman said. “We will continue to offer the same products and services. We will look for opportunities to take the best of both businesses and address our clients' request worldwide.”
The statement said, “The combined entity has no immediate plans to change either of the prior companies' systems or products. Over the coming months, the new firm will explore potential opportunities for integrated services and products driven by market demand.”
Mr. Bennett said, “There is very little overlap among our clients.”
In terms of expansion, Mr. Bennett said, “I think everything is on the table,” including providing proxy-voting recommendations. But he expressed doubt about getting into the business of recommendations, saying, “That isn't in line with our traditions in terms of unique competencies” and expectations on expansion.
UBS has a minority ownership stake in GMI, acquired in 2008. Among other GMI owners are Inter-Atlantic Group, a private equity firm, and State Street Global Alliance LLC. State Street Global Alliance sold back its interest in GMI at the time of the merger, Mr. Bennett said.
According to its registration with the Securities and Exchange Commission, The Corporate Library is owned in large part by RAM Equity Partners, a fund connected with Mr. Monks. The rest is owned by Ms. Minow, Mr. Marshall and Mr. Bennett.
GMI is not registered with the SEC.
Since its founding in 2000, GMI has provided investment-focused corporate governance research and ratings for corporations worldwide.
Since 1999, The Corporate Library has been providing research on U.S. corporate governance and executive and director compensation, as well as advisory and risk analysis services.
“The merger of The Corporate Library and GMI fills a void in the investment and insurance markets for a global corporate governance research and ratings resource by uniting two pioneering enterprises, both widely recognized for their intellectual leadership,” Mr. Bennett said in the statement.