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Posts tagged “investor relations”

Improving your proxy statement’s reader experience

Proxy statements have emerged as a key channel for telling a company’s story to shareholders and are a valuable tool for management and Boards. And proxies continue to become more robust – getting longer with more detailed disclosure; and the inclusion of infographics, charts and checklists are making key information more scannable and prominent. 

Content and design improvements are also being made to the shareholder letter, table of contents, company overview, and the proxy summary. Seventy-nine percent of companies included a proxy summary in 2016 (up from 39% in 2012) and 77% used color in their CD&As (up from 48% in 2012) based on Equilar’s 2017 Innovations in Proxy Design study, which examined proxies from the S&P 100. Companies are also increasing their use…

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5 changes in shareholder activism

Shareholder activism isn’t going away any time soon. In the first nine months of 2017, we’ve seen a similar number of campaigns and a few less proxy fights compared with 2016. But all signs indicate that the tide of shareholder activism continues to rise. While the majority of targets have been small or mid-cap companies, the recent fight between activist investor Nelson Peltz and Proctor & Gamble demonstrates large cap companies are also vulnerable.   

Activism in a company’s shareholder base is more the norm today than the exception. The need to ‘think like an activist’ with a preparedness plan in place has become increasingly more common with boards of directors. We recently hosted a webinar, along with Kai Leikefett and Lawrence Elbaum of Vinson & Elkins, and

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Five reasons why tax reform still looks like a shaky bet

Six weeks ago I wrote here that investors and corporations should not count on Congress passing tax reform legislation this year. Now that the GOP’s “Big Six” has released a somewhat more detailed framework, do the chances look any better? Here are five reasons why the ambitious plan is still a long shot:

  1. Too Many Democrats. People like to say that no one knows what the Democratic Party stands for. One thing it definitely stands against is big tax cuts for the rich. In August, all but three of the 48 Senate Democrats signed a letter rejecting deficit-financed tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy. The leading message from the Big Six is that the tax plan would provide no benefit for the rich.  But pretty much everyone else acknowledges that the nation’s…
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Vanguard’s 3 emerging board themes: engagement, diversity and sustainability

The Vanguard Group, the ultimate long-term investment firm, has set clear, aggressive expectations for public companies that want its support during the 2018 proxy season and beyond. In its August 31, 2017, “open letter to directors of public companies worldwide,” Vanguard Chairman and CEO F. William McNabb III identified three emerging themes that should get the attention of just about every public company:

  1. Good governance starts with a great board,” he wrote, and boards should be “high-functioning, well-composed, independent, diverse and experienced.” He said Vanguard sees the board as “one of a company’s most critical strategic assets” and “there is a growing role for independent directors in engagement” with shareholders.
  2. Gender diversity on the Board is…
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Is your most important IR content underperforming?

We are involved in a lot of investor presentations here at Dix & Eaton. We may be building the first one for an IPO company, undertaking a refinement of a company’s investible story and the presentation of that information, or helping to prepare for a major event or transaction. We also look at a lot of non-client presentations just to see the variety of story-telling and style.  

For most public companies, the investor presentation is probably the most important single piece of information on the IR website. According to the Cision/PR Newswire Shareholder Confidence 365 survey, “PowerPoint-based investor presentations are the top content hunted by Wall Street.” 

The problem is that the vast majority of these documents are a compromise. They are created as…

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