The number of female executive directors in FTSE 100 firms has dropped in the past year, according to a new report, despite government-backed quotas.
Figures slipped to 25.9 per cent from women making up 26.5 per cent of FTSE 100 Executive Committee’s in 2020.
While almost 40 per cent of FTSE 100 board positions are now held by women, an increase of a little under three per cent, the report by Women Leaders Review found, there remain just 18 chief executives across the top 350 public companies in the UK.
The government has touted the rising figures as a “major sea-change” in attitude towards women leaders, after numbers also climbed at FTSE 250 and FTSE 350 firms.
Though just one in three leadership roles are held by women, the new data showed.
There are also many companies yet to hit the former 33 per cent target set by the government’s previous Hampton Alexander Review.
The government has today upped the target to 40 per cent by the end of 2025.
“It is excellent to see the progress being made, but we know there is more to be done,” women and equialities minister Liz Truss said.
“We will shortly put forward a range of measures to advance equality for women at work, increasing opportunity, and tackling the issues that are holding women back as we look to ensure that everyone can reach their full potential.”