IRM Newsroom can streamline your investor communications

There are not enough hours in the day. Here we look at IRM Newsroom, a simple way of streamlining one key part of your investor communications.

Newsroom ensures that your interested investors will find out about your ASX Announcements and be able to read about them on your website – immediately once the announcement is released. With very little (or no) effort by you!


 

Life as an investor relations person is busy and stressful. There are so many things to achieve in the annual calendar – all the work that goes into planning, then reaching corporate milestones, arranging and delivering investor presentations, creation of ASX announcements and reports, driving media engagement, managing a range of stakeholder groups, and so much more.

For good reason, the investor relations people and company secretaries that we meet find it hard to ensure that everything to do with their communications runs like clockwork and happens at the right time.

clock

It’s a difficult process

One potential client that we spoke with recently described the chain of events she had to go through in order to successfully lodge and then communicate an ASX announcement. The steps were:

  • Log into ASX Online, lodge the announcement;
  • Wait for a confirmation from the Issuers Office;
  • Take the announcement (make sure its the correct version!), and load it onto the corporate website – into the ASX Announcements area, maybe onto the home page, and then upload it again if it’s something like a presentation or Quarterly Report, into another section. If its more difficult, she contacts the web support people and get them to upload it for her -when they can fit it into their schedules.
  • Log into Outlook, write an email using a stored template which needs updating a bit, double check it, ensure the addresses are all in the BCC field (and not the To field!), and then send the email – and waiting while the desktop computer sends them one at a time, and deal with the bouncebacks and unsubscribes;
  • Post the announcement to the company’s social media channels

She was using tools for this process which were mostly all free, but the whole process was so frustratingly time consuming! How free is that? And of course when is the busiest time for an IR person? Just after an Announcement is released. Not the time to be doing all this clumsy admin work.

Accompanying her irritation was a guilty admission that, sometimes investors didn’t get updated for hours, or even a day or more, because other business-critical tasks got in the way. One investor even commented to her (when she thought she’d one well and completed all this within an hour of the announcement being released on ASX) that by the time he got her email the market had moved, and she might as well not have bothered. Frustrating. And of course no-one would ever admit to accidentally sending out a wrong version of the announcement.

NotEnoughHours

Streamlining your comms

The scenario described by our potential (and now, actual!) client was something that IRM cottoned onto years ago, when best practice guidelines were upgraded regarding the timeliness of investor communication.  In response to demand from listed companies, we created IRM Newsroom, which today is loved by well over 100 ASX listed companies.

Here’s how it works

  • IRM Newsroom enables ASX listed companies to manage their website, email alerts and social media news updates with the single click of a button. Set up your standard preferences for new distribution by type of announcement. Define which different types of news go where on the website, which create email alerts, updates to social media – and in future, distribution to other news channels.

ManageRelease

  • Immediately an ASX Announcement is approved by the ASX Issuers Office, or when any other news article about your company is released, IRM Newsroom is on the job. It can instantly sends you an automated email alert, prompting you to publish the item to your selected online distribution channels with the simple click of a button. If this one is different, change your defaults and then click. Or for selected types you can have IRM Newsroom do it automatically.

DistributionChannel

  • One click to approve the news distribution, and everything gets done. Immediately. With IRM Newsroom, it all just happens.  All your pages, all your email subscribers, and your social media channels.  Yes, really!

Notification

This post is already too long, so we put together this nifty little video to summarise how Newsroom works:

And… here are some words from a happy client (who has been a happy client for a really long time):

“IRM Newsroom provides an extremely efficient and simple method of loading announcements made to the ASX directly to the company’s investor website. It also allows information to be distributed through Facebook and Twitter feeds if required. We would happily recommend the service to other listed companies.”
Karen Lopreiato, Company Secretary – Vision Eye Institute

Want to buy back some time?

If you’re running a similar process to the one that our potential (now actual) client described, we promise that we can improve your life!  In fact, we’re prepared to promise you that you’ll be able to buy back some valuable minutes in an already busy day, and provide a more immediate service in the process.

IRM Newsroom is great value. To request a demo, please contact Danny Hunt via: danny.hunt@irmau.com or +61 2 8233 6168.

Data#3 releases new investor centre

On June 16, ASX listed Data#3 launched its new investor centre. Here, IRM’s Danny Hunt explores the background to the company, and elements of the project.

About Data#3

Data#3 Limited (ASX: DTL) is an ASX listed company that provides market leading technology solutions across a wide range of industries throughout Australia and Asia Pacific.

Working with its customers’ business and technology teams, Data#3 addresses the Hybrid IT environment from on-premise to outsourced to cloud, through its consulting, software, infrastructure and managed solutions. These solutions leverage market-leading technologies from global vendors and Data#3’s knowledge, expertise and experience to accelerate the achievement of customer business objectives.


The brief

Data#3 is one of those companies for whom the general website audience is quite different to the corporate part of the site. As the primary stakeholder group at www.data3.com is customers and the content is focused on its award winning IT solutions, it made sense for the company to have a separate investor centre.

Data3-2

The solution

IRM and Data#3 worked together to create a great looking investor centre that:

  • Fit in with the look and feel of the main site, and was available as a link from the corporate site header, or accessed directly via the subdomain investor.data3.com
  • Included specialist investor data – such as share price charts with downloadable price and volume performance history
  • Housed all the reports, ASX announcements and corporate detail necessary for its investor audience, set out in a well-structured manner,
  • Allowed the IR team to showcase particular messages via the investor centre home page animation, and
  • Worked across all devices

It also included important tools, such as Email Alerts and Newsroom – which work together to keep investors updated by email and social media channels, and was supported by IRM’s specialist HQi software which delivers content and stakeholder management functionality.

Data3-3

Brem Hill, CFO and Company Secretary at Data#3, commented “It was a pleasure working with the IRM team on this project and we’re delighted with the outcome.”

Congratulations Data#3!
We think your new investor centre looks terrific and are sure it will be a valuable tool for investors. Thanks for the opportunity to work together on the project!

Thinking about a new investor centre?
If you’re thinking about a new investor centre or corporate website, get in touch with Danny Hunt, who can discuss your needs. Reach Danny via email: danny.hunt@irmau.com or phone: +61 2 8233 6168, or see www.irmau.com for more detail.

Making your AGM webcast count – six tips from Boardroom.Media

In today’s post, Will Canty, Director of Boardroom.Media discusses the use of webcasting at AGMs. Which companies need AGM webcasting? What would trigger the decision to webcast? And what is best practice? Also included below is a new offer that IRM clients can access – special discounts when corporate video is combined with AGM webcasting.

Listed companies with year end approaching are starting to think about their end of year toolkit. The annual report is in sight, the AGM will be just around the corner – there’s a lot to achieve between now and then! Most companies will, at some stage, consider the value of using webcasting – what is it? Why is it important? How much will it cost me? And is a live webcast really necessary for my audience? Let’s run through some of these questions, starting with the fundamentals:

1. What is a webcast?
When referring to the AGM, a webcast is usually either:

A) A live broadcast version of your presentation – which is made available to your stakeholders and streamed in real time, or

B) A video-recorded version of your presentation, which is made available to people after the AGM has concluded – we call this an On Demand webcast.

Both kinds of webcast can be timed with slides or overlaid with special graphics. Both are made available to investors via a link (lodged as an ASX announcement) which they click on to watch the webcast.

 

Fairfax AGM Webcast with embedded video and imagery
Fairfax AGM Webcast with embedded video and imagery

2. What goes into planning for the webcast?
Of course you want your webcast to run as smoothly as possible. Prior to the event date, BRR would work with you and / or your IR person or agency to ensure we understand your brief. We will ask you about:

  • Date, time, venue, speaker/s and what kind of webcast (live, on demand, video or audio only) you need, also who we can speak with at the venue to ensure we bring the correct setup along with us
  • Whether you’d like a registration page so that you know who is watching the webcast (BRR would always recommend this)
  • How you want the webcasting player window to look – we can customise it to look like your corporate site, annual report or other assets
  • Whether there are any special images or overlays that we need to integrate into the presentation while it’s in progress
  • If you want your presentation timed to slides, we’ll discuss cues with you to ensure we get them right, and will request a copy of your presentation to load up on the day

We recognise that AGM planning is a busy time, so we do all of the above as quickly as possible to get the detail we need, but preserve your time.

 

Freelancer FY results webcast - timed to slides
Freelancer FY results webcast – timed to slides

3. Company communications – how do we make best use of our webcast?
In the lead up to the AGM, we’d recommend companies promote the webcast. Here are some ideas on how to do that:

For live webcasts
In the documentation that goes out with your Notice of Meeting:

Let your investors know that they will be able to watch the AGM via a live webcast, and provide the registration link.

Two to four weeks ahead of the AGM:

A) Lodge an ASX announcement which notes the time, date and registration page for the webcast
B) Use your corporate website to reinforce the message – load a button onto your home page, investor centre landing page or AGM page, promoting the date and time of the AGM and pointing people to the registration page and
C) Send an email alert (using something like IRM’s Newsroom product) with the details of the event

On the day of the AGM

D) Send a reminder to all those who have registered to remind them that your webcast will commence at the specified time later that day

After the AGM is wrapped up, Boardroom.Media will provide clients with a link to an On Demand version of the webcast that investors can use to watch the presentation if they missed it live. We recommend:

E) Lodging this link along with your AGM wrap-up materials
F) Changing the buttons on your website to reflect the update that investors can now download the On Demand version

For on demand webcasts

In the documentation that goes out with your Notice of Meeting:

Let your investors know that they will be able to watch the AGM via an On Demand webcast, and provide the registration link.

Two to four weeks ahead of the AGM:

Use your corporate website to remind people that an On Demand version of the webcast will be available after the AGM. Load a button onto your home page, investor centre landing page or AGM page pointing people to the registration page

After the event

Boardroom.Media will work with the client to ensure the webcast is edited appropriately, then provide clients with a link to an On Demand version of the webcast that investors can use to watch the presentation if they missed it live. We recommend:

A) Lodging this link along with your AGM wrap-up materials
B) Including buttons on your website to promote that investors can now download the On Demand version
C) Pushing out the link via your social media channels

“Webcasting your investor presentations, results and general meetings expands your global investor reach and provides investors with the opportunity to see your presentation in their own time.”

 

Graincorp AGM webcast with video and presentation
Graincorp AGM webcast with video and presentation

4. How do I know whether I need a live webcast or if an On Demand version will suffice?

While live webcasting is the best practice approach, due to the infrastructure and resourcing required to deliver the live webcast, it is more expensive, and also brings an additional element of pressure to the speaker. It won’t be relevant in all cases for all companies.

We find that as a general rule of thumb, most of the ASX100 companies want to webcast live. They have (for the most part) large share registers and often actively engaged investors, who want a seat at the meeting, so a live webcast is a good idea.

For any company that is considering announcing something material at a meeting, a live webcast or conference call, to which the link has been provided prior, is crucial.

The On Demand webcast will suit those companies which want to enable shareholders to watch the AGM proceedings, but don’t need the timeliness of a live version.

How do I know
5. Can my shareholders ask questions during a webcast?

You make the decision as to whether to allow shareholders to ask questions during the webcast. There are a couple of ways to do this:

A) You can allow people to submit questions in advance of the event – either during the registration portal, or via an email address that you promote via your market communications, which you can collate and then respond to on the day, or
B) The Boardroom.Media webcasting platform can accept questions, live, during the presentation. You would then have someone in the room who can deliver the questions to the presenter for response

Q+A

6. How much does a webcast cost these days?

While the early webcasting products were very expensive, with improvements to technology and infrastructure, webcasting is now very cost effective.

Webcasting your investor presentations, results and general meetings expands your global investor reach and provides investors with the opportunity to see your presentation in their own time.


Up until one month after your year end, Boardroom.Media is offering any IRM client who requests a combination of a corporate video and an On Demand AGM webcast a 20% discount off the total quote.

For more information, please mention the IRM offer when you contact Will Canty at Boardroom.Media: via email: wcanty@brrmedia.com or phone: +612 9339 6526 or visit www.brrmedia.com.

Chasing the greenback: how to attract US investors

At IRM, we’re privileged to complement the work of some of the best investor and public relations practitioners in the business.

Today’s post, Chasing the greenback: how to attract US investors was written by Kyahn Williamson, who Heads Investor Communication at Buchan Consulting, a consultancy that IRM works with often.

Here Kyahn explores the thoughts and opinions of several respected US investors and highlights the paths that a number of our ASX listed companies have ventured down when attracting interest from US investors.


“Chasing the greenback: How to attract US investors” first appeared in the Winter edition of Listed@ASX. You can download the full edition here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015: The US supports one of the world’s deepest pools of capital, and interest in Australian companies is at a peak. In 2013, US investors poured more than US$35 billion into Australia including ASX listed companies, and not just in the traditional stronghold of mining and resources, but across retail, manufacturing and healthcare.

There are many reasons US investors consider ASX listed companies. For some, it is diversification, for others it is the ability to take a meaningful stake in new technologies or IP. And with the falling Australian dollar and the collapse in commodities, the potential to deliver upside is driving strong investor interest.

John Chiplin, the founder of US based investor, Newstar Ventures, and non-executive Director of ASX listed Benitec, says, “It’s good right now because there is an appetite for risk capital and value arbitrage between Australian and US companies is as high as it’s ever been.”

“Most Australian companies are undervalued at the moment,” said Trevor Brucato, Director of RB Milestone Group LLC, a New York based equity research and market intelligence firm. “Valuations are not reflecting true value and many companies, especially in natural resources, are trading at less than liquidation. These conditions scream for management buyouts and other various takeover opportunities. This, along with currency arbitrage, is heightening interest from US funds.”

AN ABUNDANCE OF SPECIALISTS

Although the arbitrage theme is strong in the current climate, the US, with its abundance of specialist investors ranging from venture capitalists to institutional funds, is a source of patient capital.

“The key to making those investors sticky is to take the time to have a presence in the US: make the effort to engage, and go meet with them on a regular basis,” said Daniel Sharp, a corporate advisor with Canaccord Genuity.

Companies such as ImpediMed (IPD) and Nanosonics (NAN) have both have recently completed major capital raises, attracting international, institutional investors.  They are also amongst the best performing stocks on the ASX currently, and recent entrants into the ASX300.

Like their peer, Osprey Medical (OSP), these companies have growing sales and awareness in the US, and in the case of ImpediMed a US Category One reimbursement status. Their relevance and strong presence in the market, demonstrates that timing is all important when pitching to the US market. Many agree that some companies simply jump the gun, in terms of the story being too premature or not understanding who the relevant investors are.

The experience of these companies also supports the view that the ASX is an excellent stepping stone for smaller or early stage companies. There has been a run of US based companies listing on the ASX, because it is a regarded as a highly efficient and well regulated market, but one where it is much easier to raise small amounts of capital or list at an earlier stage and at a lower valuation.

For companies at the more speculative end however, the US appetite for risk, is a draw card.  As Chiplin points out, “In the US, investors are in generally less risk averse and will take on more risk to get rewards.”

A CASE IN POINT: BENITEC

Australian biotech, Benitec (ASX.BLT), which is conducting first in man trials of its gene silencing technology, raised $30 million in April 2014, almost all from the US. Approximately 30% of its register is US based. A company like Benitec, is considered high risk in the Australian market, so attracting quality US investors and capital was transformative in itself. Benitec was effective in tapping into the intense investor interest in the gene therapy space, which was driving up the valuations of its peers, and targeting specialist investors with a deep understanding of their technology.

But when there’s more money to be found in one New York City block, than in the whole of Australia, where does one begin in their quest to find the fund manager of their dreams? Unfortunately, there is no silver bullet. It takes a great deal of time, effort and persistence.

Barry Driscoll, of Kennedy Needham, who has spent much of his career advising Australian companies on American Depositary Receipts (ADR) programs says: “The companies that do it well understand what the market is. You can’t go in with a scatter gun approach. You need to have the right people guiding you, and you need to get in front of the broking houses that are trading the foreign stocks – and that isn’t necessarily the household names.”

Once you find the right target, getting the story right is paramount. Often, we are told that the Australian style of presentation needs to be honed for the US market. This means not only finding your angle for the US or the individual investor – but ensuring the key points of the story are delivered succinctly and up front. US investors, like their Australian counterparts, want to see quality management, addressable markets, and the ability to execute. Sharp says investors will delve more deeply, and will often have a more detailed understanding of a technology and how it is applied in the market.

But perhaps save the technical details for the specialist analyst or the second meeting. As Brucato succinctly puts it: “In New York, investors want the facts and they want them fast.”

 

Special thanks to Kyahn and to Buchan for allowing us to reproduce the article here.  For more detail on Buchan Consulting, please visit www.buchanwe.com.au.

The easy way to upgrade to a smart corporate website

More and more lately, we’re meeting companies that are having trouble keeping their investors updated in a timely manner. They have nice looking websites where something like WordPress is being used for content management. Mailchimp or Campaign Monitor sends ASX Announcements by email. The websites look ok, and have all the generalised tools behind them to keep the content up to date. And they are really cheap. But….

…It’s labour intensive to keep these sites up to date. The investor relations people and company secretaries that we deal with find it hard to keep those websites up to date and keep them looking and sounding right. They often have to rely on third parties or technical people to make changes. They have to be design and content experts themselves, specifying things in minute detail, and checking and correcting them afterwards. And with the immediacy of news from ASX Announcements – investors want and expect the site to be updated immediately – its a time management problem. When there’s corporate activity on, they are just too busy to get to doing those site updates straight away. The website often fails to reflect the very latest position, just when investors want to see it.

They start to realise that all this is just not really good enough for a professional corporate website.

Then things change. They find their software options difficult to manage and, quickly, the corporate website goes from being an active communicator to a management issue.

Site migration

Migrating your website across to IRM is a simple process - you'll end up with a best practice website that can be an active communicator

Image source: forbairt.com

During the past few months, we’ve had a number of clients migrate to IRM after hearing about our HQi content management and IRM Newsroom systems. They’ve been looking for the ease of management and automation that they weren’t able to achieve with their previous approach. They can see that the IRM tools mean that ordinary people can keep the website up to date and fresh, quickly and reliably.

Then they discover that the total cost of managing the site is probably actually less when using IRM. Their time savings and improved quality add more value than the IRM service costs.

Why is life so different?

The IRM product suite has many features that are been specifically designed to support ASX listed (and dual listed) companies with specialist investor relations functions.

Once migrated, your corporate site will be supported by the power of the IRM HQi content management system. You will be able to edit pages, add new pages, restructure the navigation, provide share price data, and news feeds. And much much more. As easily as updating a Word document. And HQi maintains the overall website style with your changes. No more strange looking fonts and colours in the extra content you just added. It also protects you from mistakes, with authorise, review and go back options. With an audit trail of changes, there’s good governance as well.

Included in HQi is the IRM Newsroom product. It automatically updates the site immediately once ASX announcements are released, permits multiple views of selected announcements on the site, and sends an alert to investors through a variety of channels (email, and social media). It all just happens, and our clients love it. And their investors can get an instant reminder and see the very latest news, just as soon as it has happened.

Then there’s the technology proofing. New browsers, new ideas, new tools, faster computers, better investor information tools, better service models. IRM just does all of this for you. Future proofing, part of the service.

IRM can take usually all the content from an existing site and migrate it to HQi. It’s easy stuff.

If you think it worthwhile, we often also recommend a “re-skin” at the same time – freshen up and modernise the look and feel, incorporate some new design techniques, add some IRM investor relations special pages, ensure the site is fully responsive (ie works on all devices), and update the images. But keep the messages and content just the same.

A great advantage of this approach is that the migration project doesn’t need to take much of  your time. When IRM focuses just on a migration, its a low impact sport for you.

“The migration and re-skin project is swift and simple.  When it’s done, you have the power of HQi to future-proof your corporate site for many years to come.

Migrate to an IRM corporate website or investor centre today - it's a breeze
Migrate today – it’s easy

Migrate today

If you make the decision to migrate your site, you’ll end up with a shiny new corporate website or investor centre.

You will have a first class, high functioning, fully responsive website with IRM Newsroom integration and many other features from the IRM portfolio.

One recently migrated site is Wolf Minerals. The site now includes a refreshed look and feel, which works across the full range of mobile devices, and is powered by IRM’s suite of smart investor tools.

Wolf Minerals, fully responsive site migration
Wolf Minerals, fully responsive website

Discuss a migration

To discuss migrating your site and check out IRM’s specialist IR tools, contact Danny Hunt at IRM via +61 2 8233 6168 or danny.hunt@irmau.com. We could have you up and running in no time, with an automated, best practice website and set of investor-focused, productivity increasing tools.

Innovation, with a bit of help from Sydney’s TEDx 2015

Brimming with inspiration from the recent TEDx talks in Sydney recently? Us too!  In case you missed the event, shared below are a couple of wrap-up articles that caught the eye of the IRM team.

Sydney TEDx - image source: benojo.com

TEDx is the local variation of TED, the world-famous, not for profit speech series, devoted to spreading ideas.  Last Thursday, the Sydney TEDx event for 2015 was held at the Opera House, with a full program of interesting and insightful speakers.

While we didn’t make it on the day, it didn’t take the IRM team long to seek out highlights from the program.

TEDx Sydney 2015!
TEDx takes over Sydney!

In this neat Mumbrella post, Five lessons from TEDx Sydney are explored, along with the video clips from:

  • Tom Uglow, creative director of Google Creative Labs:
  • Hamish Skermer, billed as the ‘King of the Compost Toilet’
  • Dylan Alcott, Paralympic gold medallist, Order of Australia medal recipient and motivational speaker
  • Tega Brain, Artist, and
  • Tony Fry, Design theorist and philosopher

Meanwhile, over at Business Insider, Alex Herber explores how corporate Australia sat alongside “along side the usual hipsters, startup reps and academics” in order to drive their own thinking and innovation.

We hope you enjoy viewing and reading through the pieces from TEDx.  Like our clients, at IRM, we’re always looking for ways to innovate to improve our business.  If you’re looking for some inspiration on how to save costs and make your business processes more efficient, check out these posts that we shared recently through our blog, IRMatters:

Here’s to innovation and great ideas!

IRM - supporting innovation