I got some spam earlier this week from a vendor inviting me to their tech conference in the US. Fronting this event was the company’s shareholder-in-chief, who’ll be giving a keynote presentation about nuanced, hyperdisruptive paradigm synergies, or something.

Wait… what?

No, not the venture-capital Valley speak, the person’s title. What’s a shareholder-in-chief? Does every business have one? Could I become one, if I had nothing else going on? As an accounting hobbyist, and someone (perhaps morbidly) curious about corporate structures and management, I couldn’t help but be intruiged.

What could it mean? Taking a stab in the dark, I might hit someone. In keeping with that hostile theme though, it sounds like caretakers appointing a company’s largest shareholder after the dismissal of a managing director or board. Who else do we have to run the business, Janet? I dunno, Bernard has massive amounts of stock for some reason, let’s get him!

But that can’t be it, surely? Is it the most influential shareholder who’s also on the board? But then wouldn’t you still refer to them as a board member over a shareholder? I’m a shareholder in a bunch of companies, but that doesn’t really confer much of anything.

I did a bunch of web searches for shareholder-in-charge, but all I got were company profiles from people who have that title. If anyone knows what someone in that role does, and how they go it, do get in touch.

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person. Hi!

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