Caroline Cox – GC Powerlist
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Australia 2022

Materials and mining

Caroline Cox

Chief Legal, Governance & External Affairs Officer | BHP

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    Australia 2022

    legal500.com/gc-powerlist/

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    Caroline Cox

    Chief Legal, Governance & External Affairs Officer | BHP

    Team size: 460

    What are the most significant cases and or transactions that your legal team has been involved in?

    The legal team has been central to a range of transformational transactions this past year including the unification of BHP’s dual listed corporate structure from two parent companies in the UK and Australia with two share prices, into one parent company. This received support from over 96% of Plc and Limited shareholders at General Meetings as well as Court support and a broad range of necessary regulatory approvals. Additionally, the team was critical in supporting the development and release of a Climate Transition Action Plan which was the basis for a Say on Climate vote put to shareholders at our Limited and Plc Annual General Meetings, which was the first such vote in Australia and received over 85% support from shareholders.

    How do you feel the pandemic has changed the world of in-house counsel and the function of general counsel?

    A key ingredient of success for an in-house team is ‘having a seat at the table.’ In-house teams have needed to be more deliberate and creative in how they achieve this while in-person meetings and site visits have not been possible. It has also required an alertness to legal and ESG (Environmental and Social Governance) issues posed by the pandemic directly, as well as indirectly. In this sense, the pandemic has confirmed the critical role of in-house teams in providing holistic advice which considers sustainability and community expectations, as well as regulatory requirements.

    What technological advances do you feel will impact the role of in-house teams in the future the most? 

    I would not point to one advancement. Rather, the overall embedment of technology at the heart of most businesses requires in-house teams to commit to understanding its use on an ongoing basis, what risks that gives rise to, but also how better use of data and analytics can inform the insights and advice we provide in our roles.

    Caroline Cox - Australia 2018

    Group general counsel | BHP Law

    ‘I see my purpose as general counsel to be a problem-solver, developing strategies with the benefit of my legal skills, but also broader trends, experience and stakeholder interests. This includes...

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