Skip to content


What’s the difference between a company director and a shareholder?

What’s the difference between a company director and a shareholder?

What's a company director?

A director is someone who has been elected or appointed to arrange company affairs. The can be, but aren’t necessarily, a shareholder of the company. Every company is required to have at least one.

A director is obliged to act honestly and in the best interests of the company (and its shareholders), with reasonable care at all times. You can find out more about the role and responsibilities here. The duty of care is not to be taken lightly. An example – if a director allows a company to continue trading while insolvent, a creditor may take legal action against the director, putting personal assets at risk.

What's a shareholder?

A shareholder is someone who has an investment with a company by owning shares. In small-medium businesses, a shareholder may also be an employee, a director, or a shareholder-employee, participating in day-to-day management. In large companies, a shareholder is probably not a director.

Shareholders may receive a ‘shareholder salary’ for working in the company. It can also be considered an allocation of profits. This must be reasonable, based on the work performed, and in line with market conditions.

Shareholders have a right to the profits of the business. These are paid out through dividends, in proportion to the number of shares that they own.

The shareholder(s) appoint the director(s).

Who are Beany?

We’re an online accounting firm that is always right here for you, your accounting pain relief. The most advanced technology lets us work way more closely with you than a normal accountant would.

We have a dedicated team of remote accountants to take care of your business no matter where you are, so you can focus on growing your business. We take out the ‘fluff’, break down the barriers and get things done. Looking out for you is what we are all about. Get started for free today.  

Tess, Problem Solver

Got any questions about Beany?

Chat to one of our friendly problem solvers today to get clarity.

Kim Jenkins

subscribe + learn

Beany Resources delivered straight to your inbox.

Beany Resources delivered straight to your inbox.


Related resources

View all resources
View all resources