The Association of Compliance Professionals

The Compliance context

Due to increased pressure from civil society and regulators, political and economic actors have been facing increasingly stringent requirements and demands regarding Compliance and ethics. Companies are aware of the risks at stake (the fight against financial crimes and terrorism, anti-corruption, fraud…) and have put prevention and due diligence programs in place in order to protect their tangible and intangible assets.

Compliance- a hot topic in business news

Recently, multiple high-profile events have underscored the importance for Compliance to be at the core of companies’ organizational cultures: The increased exposure that companies now have to international laws (ex. UK Bribery Act – US Foreign Corruption Prevention Act) requires them to be vigilant about respecting the laws of the countries in which they operate. The financial crisis and certain practices put in place by economic and political actors have increased the demands and intransigence of the general public. Regulatory authorities conduct investigations more frequently and issue increasingly hefty fines leading to immeasurable impacts on companies’ reputations. To that extent, Compliance programs serve as an effective tool for preventing violations while also improving companies’ reputations. Companies use their competitors’ failure to implement adequate Compliance programs for their own business purposes by engaging in ‘naming and shaming’. Given this context, Le Cercle participates in conferences focusing on a variety of topics, such as during the OECD’s Integrity Week, but also at the Cabinet Bensoussan for an analysis of advanced technology rights and Data Privacy. Furthermore, we have formed a partnership with the Université Paris II Panthéon-Assas to develop a university course and diploma for the role of Compliance Officers. This initiative was directed by Professor Antoine Gaudemet and the Paris Dauphine University who, under the guidance of Sophie Schiller, developed a Certificate in Compliance advanced training program. Additionally, Le Cercle De la Compliance collaborates with ‘The Ethisphere Institute’ to organize events that help further awareness about Compliance-related topics. The organization’s mission is to define and advance the standards of business ethics by promoting best practices and strategies that should be implemented.

With these points in mind, Le Cercle De la Compliance, in collaboration with the Taylor Wessing firm, conducted an assessment of the state of Compliance in France for 2016. Next November, an event will be held to present the results of our findings. Le Cercle De la Compliance hopes to put in place a training program for our members that focuses on the following topics: preventing corruption, import/export controls, investigations, Data Privacy, anti-trust and Compliance programs.