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Veeva Systems aligns its values with its corporate structure

Uploaded: Jan 21, 2021

Pleasanton-based Veeva Systems completed a groundbreaking corporate amendment to formally align its values and its corporate structure earlier this month.

Previously the software company was incorporated in Delaware and its formal duty was limited to maximizing shareholder value. CEO and founder Peter Gassner asked Josh Faddis, the corporate counsel, to check into a way to realign how they run the company with its incorporation papers. That was back in 2014 and started a process that shareholders ratified with a 99% approval for Veeva to become a Public Benefit Corporation.

This designation formally allows Gassner and other board members and officers to balance the interests of varied stakeholders—employees, customers, shareholders, partners and communities—as it makes decisions about Veeva.

It’s notable that the company, which went public in 2013, is the first publically traded firm to take this step. It has a market cap up $43.6 billion and is headquartered on Stoneridge Drive in Hacienda Business Park. About 800 people work there out of a total workforce of more than 4,000 people. The pandemic shutdown was new for many headquarters staff, but about half of the employees (sales and field service) already were working remotely because of their assignments.

Faddis explained that neither he nor Gassner had heard of the relatively new public benefit corporation designation when he was asked to look into a way to align the structure with the company’s values. When he learned about it that set off a series of conversations with executives and the board that led to the vote this month.

Gassner wrote in his message to shareholders about the special meeting, “As we have grown and as our customer relationships have deepened, we have been increasingly important to the life sciences industry’s ability to improve health and extend life. Looking ahead, Veeva has the potential to become essential to the process of developing medicines and cures and bringing them to patients.”

Gassner, previously a senior executive with both PeopleSoft and Salesforce, was heavily involved with the core platforms for both companies. Veeva is a formal partner with Salesforce on its customer relationship software that is specifically designed for how Big Pharma salespeople engage with doctors. That software launched the company, but its other product, developed in-house in Pleasanton, is designed to support pharmaceutical companies in their drug development, testing, certification and manufacturing. Faddis said Veeva Vault is growing strongly and likely will be the firm’s signature product in the years ahead. Veeva’s customers range from the giant multi-national pharma companies to small, private firms in the life sciences sector.

Both he and Gassner believe that the new designation aligns with the core mission of their customers and will allow Veeva to continue to recruit and retain quality employees. In contrast to many tech companies, Veeva doesn’t require non-compete agreements for employees.

Before announcing the proxy vote, Veeva contacted its 20 largest shareholders—many institutional investors—and ran the switch by them. They obviously liked it—99% in favor with an 82% turnout speaks to both the support and the interest in the change. The irony of the vote is that the board and shareholders had to agree that broadening the critical considerations beyond just financial was in the long term interests of the shareholders.

Faddis thought the overwhelming support may encourage other public companies that are run with similar values to consider the public benefit designation.

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Comments

 +   8 people like this
Posted by Lahommed, a resident of Dublin,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 9:28 am

Lahommed is a registered user.

Now that The new President has already put more Americans on the unemployment line: the ending of the Keystone pipeline construction and end of the Border wall construction it is obvious is focus is on foreigners not Americans. His new green deal will most likely result in many car companies once again fleeing America as they will seek lower tax shelters and costs, The Airline industry will not find a friend in Biden. All the while he seeks to allow 11 million illegals a pathway and add to an already strained economy and entitlement program that will once again hurt none other then the American middle class. Donald trump told us all about this but apparently America did not listen! Wonder if those in Pennsylvania today are having buyers regret with Biden?


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Michael Austin , a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 10:26 am

Michael Austin is a registered user.

U.S. President Joe Biden's promised ban on new oil and gas drilling on federal lands would take years to shut off production from top shale drillers because they already have stockpiled permits. Major players last year tendered intent to purchase privately held lands in Dewey County South Dakota.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Rich Buckley, a resident of Livermore,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 10:27 am

Rich Buckley is a registered user.

As a public benefit corporation, perhaps they can help serve consumer interest in knowing the brand name of the experimental vaccines each hospital is buying.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Shaurya557, a resident of Diablo,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 10:29 am

Shaurya557 is a registered user.

The student is unsure on the topic at hand Web Link, so they want to hire an order essay service to ensure they don't affect their grades.


 +   5 people like this
Posted by Jocelyn Combs, a resident of Pleasanton Valley,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 11:36 am

Jocelyn Combs is a registered user.

Tim,
What are Veeva's core values? I get the alignment concept but I don't see what they are aligning with. What am I missing?


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Jocelyn Combs, a resident of Pleasanton Valley,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 11:36 am

Jocelyn Combs is a registered user.

Tim,
What are Veeva's core values? I get the alignment concept but I don't see what they are aligning with. What am I missing?


 +   9 people like this
Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 4:19 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Lhommed, you are already complaining about President Biden's actions and it is only his second day as President.

Let's take a look at track records and facts:

Web Link

Obama's last 3 years of job growth was higher than Trump's first 3 years, which excludes Trump's 4th year due to Covid.

Please look for data and factual information as opposed to opinions based on your dislike of Democrats.

Here is another fact:

Biden won national elections 3 times, twice as VP and once as PRESIDENT!!!

Trump was IMPEACHED TWICE!!


 +   8 people like this
Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Jan 21, 2021 at 4:24 pm

Kevin is a registered user.

Rich, please get help for your QANON addiction. It has now turned you into an anti-vaccination person.


 +   11 people like this
Posted by Jake Waters, a resident of Birdland,
on Jan 22, 2021 at 4:24 pm

Jake Waters is a registered user.

@Kevin

We do have a right to complain about Biden, that's part of being an American citizen that you and your Left fail to comprehend. Liberals seemed very comfortable back in 2016 and continually for four years to complain every day without any substance.

"Trump was IMPEACHED TWICE!!" - Trump was brought up on Impeachment charges once, not twice, where it was not supported.

"Biden won national elections 3 times, twice as VP and once as PRESIDENT!!!" - Well, Trump has Biden beat on that one: Biden ran 3 times for President and lost, and that is while he was playing Senator. Trump ran one time and won, never running for office before.

Lastly, Forbes was purchased by a Hong Kong Investment group, in 2014, so I don't give much credence to what they have to say.



Web Link


 +   5 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jan 23, 2021 at 8:48 am

MichaelB is a registered user.

"Lhommed, you are already complaining about President Biden's actions and it is only his second day as President.
Let's take a look at track records and facts:"


Or let's make excuses or change the subject? Lahommed explained why - Biden not wasting any time by imposing more regulations on the economy, eliminating jobs, and favoring foreign interests over those of Americans.

Let's take look at basic economics vs. "social justice" and "equity" that progressives want. Businesses are not charities to guarantee employment and wealth, people do not operate them for the purpose of giving the government more money, regulations cost money/jobs, and more illegal immigrants allowed in means fewer job opportunities for American workers. The so called "green new deal" is going restrict economic growth, cost thousands of blue collar jobs, and will raise energy prices.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by MichaelB, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jan 23, 2021 at 9:19 am

MichaelB is a registered user.

"U.S. President Joe Biden's promised ban on new oil and gas drilling on federal lands would take years to shut off production from top shale drillers because they already have stockpiled permits. "



It doesn't matter if production is shut off.

All that is required is reduce availability of supply to raise the market price of energy that will negatively affect all businesses and consumers. I doubt that this is going to be the only restriction that Biden and his party will want on fossil fuel production/usage. Expect a California style "cap and trade" regulation nationwide or a "carbon tax". Let's forget about the fact that wind and solar energy sources are not reliable - and can't supply the requirements of the nation.


 +   3 people like this
Posted by Kevin, a resident of Castlewood,
on Jan 24, 2021 at 9:26 am

Kevin is a registered user.

Trump ran in 2000 presidential election as a Reform Party candidate. Your information is not correct. There were other presidents who won on their first attempt, with the most recent one being President Obama.

One of the main problems with you Trumpsters and Republicans is denial of facts and data that go against Trump. Amazing that you reject Forbes but listen to QANON, Proud Boys, KKK, Etc.

I respect your opinion about fossil fuels. I don't agree with it. Staying with fossil fuels is bad for business and bad for global warming. Fossil fuels will go the path of coal and Biden is right to set up a transition plan to new innovative technologies. It will take many years but ignoring it will put us behind China.

In my opinion, the farmers in Pennsylvania and other shale regions should go back to farming as opposed to sitting on their [removed] and receiving checks from oil companies. Good hard work that feeds the country is better for their souls and all of us than listening / reading garbage of social media, becoming racist Trumpsters.


 +   1 person likes this
Posted by Rich Buckley, a resident of Livermore,
on Jan 24, 2021 at 9:59 am

Rich Buckley is a registered user.

Kevin of the Castle of Would, Not so much anti-vax, but caution over what is being proposed and injected into everyone. The research I've read so far concerning most of the vaccines for CV-19, indicate that they expedited the warp-speed approvals by dropping phase three of human trials. While protocol mandates human trial, it was a dropped requirement to rush to market. You and I and everyone else are the human trials for these warp speed vaccines. It's why they remain experimental until the data comes in.

I do try to read the literature of the vaccine companies since they have no liability whatsoever, under law, for your death when they inject it.

Now we are reading reports that there are "some problems" with one of these experimental vaccines from company "M" (I may be wrong about it being M). "Some Problems" may mean anything from adverse reactions to death.

Web Link






 +   7 people like this
Posted by Jake Waters, a resident of Birdland,
on Jan 24, 2021 at 11:31 pm

Jake Waters is a registered user.

@Kevin

“ One of the main problems with you Trumpsters and Republicans is denial of facts and data that go against Trump. Amazing that you reject Forbes but listen to QANON, Proud Boys, KKK, Etc."

You have problems with comprehension. I reread my comment, and funny how I never mention the things you said. You liberals love to stir the pot with fake and inaccurate information. I guess that is why you read CCP articles.

Kevin, perhaps it's time for you to move along, unless you are going to stop with your broad brush and hateful rhetoric.


 +  Like this comment
Posted by Michael Austin , a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jan 25, 2021 at 9:21 am

Michael Austin is a registered user.

There was a study done in 2015 that found "30% to 40% of all food produced in the United States is thrown away".

Since the 1950's the federal government has paid farmers not to farm some of their lands.

"Sitting back on my (removed) receiving checks from the oil companies" is patriotic, serving my country.


 +   4 people like this
Posted by Senor Citizen, a resident of Birdland,
on Jan 25, 2021 at 10:41 am

Senor Citizen is a registered user.

Poor Tim! He takes the time and effort to craft this thoughtful piece on a forward-looking local company that's actually walkin' the CSR talk ... and it takes exactly One comment to send the blog's thread spinning off into the political nether-netherlands.

It'd sure be nice to find some way to steer the comments, or at least to keep them within shouting distance of the topic.

Anyway, congrats Veeva Systems! You weren't the first public company/B Corp (Etsy was, 2015), and there are 3500 others, BUT you are now freer to do well by doing good.


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