Well we are smack in the middle of IR season in Australia and we thought it would be a good time to talk about the ins and outs of quality investor relations conferencing services. If you were looking for a provider for your announcement what do you need to know:
First and foremost there must be capacity. Look for the ability to handle double the expected volume of participants in case you have a hot topic or become a takeover target and people are more interested than usual. Don’t take their word for it, make them prove it and don’t accept being charge for all ports unused. You should only pay for a the operators needed to answer the forecasted incoming callers.
Next is experience. A good group of operators will increase the professionalism of your announcement. The flow and control of people asking questions is paramount to a smooth call and there is a vast difference between a good and bad operator. Don’t skimp here as the voices controlling your announcement are seem by participants as your people.
Remote access to participant lists. A good provider will allow you to view the participants on line and in the queue for questions, in real time. This can be done through a web interface and will allow you to screen out people or questions you do not want to take during such a public event.
Online and telephone replay. For continuous disclosure you should be providing an online or dial in playback of your announcement. Some companies archive playback on their website for months, others for weeks or even days. Whatever your requirement this capability should be delivered seamlessly by your conferencing provider.
Reporting: Within a VERY short time of the completion of your call you should receive a report outlining participant numbers, names, questioners as well as confirmation of the availability of the playback. Time is of the essence in the digital age.
While there are many other issues you should look at the above are the starting point to see if your potential provider has the right stuff.