Caliber Insights

This cheat sheet makes it easy to stay on top of new partnerships, hires, companies and industry intelligence in Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC), Investor Relations, Marketing and Public Relations. Check back often for industry updates and insights you cannot get elsewhere, all in one place.

About Caliber Corporate Advisers

Caliber Corporate Advisers is a strategic advisory firm focused on guiding senior management of B2B companies that provide services to professionals in Finance, FinTech, Governance, Risk & Compliance (GRC), Investor Relations, Marketing & Public Relations. Learn more.

Spotlight of the Month | February 2015

Q&A with Bradley Scott, Associate Director at SNL IR Solutions

SNL Financial

Q: How do your financial tools and financial data offerings differ from competitive services?

A: To analyze certain industries effectively, you need more than a generalist information provider. Generalists give you basic financials, news and broker reports, but SNL combines such ground-floor information with sector-specific metrics and values that describe the companies and industries we cover, plus data on key assets, mapping tools, regulatory insight and more.  We integrate exclusive news, data and analytics on an interactive platform that is as easy to use as it is powerful.

Q: In addition to providing financial sector data, SNL creates custom websites. Why should a company select SNL IR Solutions?

A: We’ve found that our clients really value SNL’s more holistic approach to online investor relations, which centers around the idea that IR websites should be an extension of the conversation clients have with their shareholders. 10-Qs and 8-Ks don’t paint the whole picture, and investors are looking for that something extra that makes a company stand out from its peers. IR sites should offer more than standardized filings; they should tell the company’s unique financial story to the investment community.

For this reason, we’ve built an IR website product that not only keeps our clients in regulatory compliance, but supports their individual strategic goals for investor communication. We can utilize a large portion of the data we collect for our financial information platform to power those websites, which allows our clients to benefit from the same data that thousands of investment professionals use and trust on a daily basis.

Q:  In which sector are you experiencing the greatest growth, and why?

A: Over the past couple of years, we’ve actually been experiencing our greatest growth in sectors outside of those that SNL covers from a database perspective. We’ve also found that many of these companies have found tremendous value in our more consultative approach to IR website management. The combination of vast array of datasets (even outside of SNL’s “covered” sectors), an advanced platform that supports cutting edge web technology and mobile support, and an attentive and proactive support team to help guide IROs on IR web best practices, creates a very compelling offering for companies of all sizes in any industry.

We’ve also seen a lot of growth outside of SNL’s “covered” industries due to our inclusion as a preferred IR website provider for NYSE-listed companies. Through this partnership, we’ve been able to introduce our IR products and services to many companies that had previously been limited in their options for IR web hosting.

Q: Partnerships appear to be a key part of your business.  How do you select your partners and what benefits have these partnerships delivered to you and your customers?

A: Partnerships have indeed been incredibly important and valuable to the growth and continued success of SNL’s IR business. Since we started hosting IR websites in 2001, we’ve focused on supplementing the services we provide with others that are critical to the IR function, including conference calls and webcasting, shareholder targeting and surveillance, contact management, and governance and whistleblower tools. We feel that by aligning ourselves with experts in these areas (Chorus Call, Ipreo, and Ethical Advocate), we can offer our clients a complete IR package with top-of-the-line services

Q: Can you share a specific story of how your products helped a customer?

A: Absolutely – very recently we worked with one of our clients, W.P. Carey, to help redesign and optimize their IR website to meet some very specific goals around investor engagement. Specifically, our client wanted to increase the amount of time users spent on the IR website, and drive more traffic to the company’s annual report.

The process began with an annual site audit in which we worked with W.P. Carey to identify areas for improvement around site navigation and content display. Before making changes, we took a baseline assessment of user traffic through our site analytics tool. After a few months and a site redesign, we went back to look at the analytics to assess how the changes impacted the way investors were using the website.

The results were fantastic and in-line with what we had outlined initially – a 51% YoY increase in Annual Report views, a 17% QoQ increase in length of browsing session, and a 15% QoQ decrease in the website bounce rate.

Q: How do you incorporate customer feedback into your products and solutions?

A: Gathering feedback from our clients and acting upon it has been the life-blood of SNL since it was first incorporated in 1988 and the IR Solutions business is no exception. After every interaction between our support team and a client, we send a brief 3-question survey encouraging clients to rate us on the speed and quality of the interaction, as well as their likelihood to recommend us to a colleague. On average, nearly ⅓ of these surveys are returned, and more than 99% of those responses rate us as an 8 out of 10 or higher in all three categories.

We also survey our client base periodically with respect to enhancements they’d like to see added to the product, and these responses, along with the trends we see emerging in the industry, play a vital role in our product development priorities.

 

Posted In Spotlight of the Month

People Moves | Q1 2015

Investor Relations

  • The National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI) announced that its board of directors has appointed James M. Cudahy, CAE, to be its next president and CEO effective March 2, 2015. He currently serves as executive director and CEO for the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). Cudahy will succeed Jeffrey D. Morgan, CAE, FASAE, who resigned in October 2014 to become CEO of the Club Managers Association of America.
  • Hugh Stein is now a Strategic Marketing Executive with Issuer Direct.  He joins the company from Blue Sky  Broadcast, where he served as a Director, Business Development.

Governance, Risk & Compliance

  • LRN, which helps organizations meet their compliance obligations, shape ethical behavior, and strengthen culture and leadership, announced the hiring of Jean-Marc Levy, most recently Head of Global Issuer Services at the New York Stock Exchange, as President, Ethics and Compliance Solutions and a member of the executive committee.
  • Dave Bobker has been announced as the Advisory Director at Argyle, DG3’s corporate governance advisory division.  Bobker was most recently a senior vice president at AST Phoenix Advisors.

Capital Markets/Finance

  • Gabriella Halasz-Clarke is now an Associate Vice President, Media Targeting & Monitoring at NASDAQ.  She was previously at Thomson Reuters as a Global Head, Distribution Services.
  • Brandon Harris was recently named a Global Head of Corporate Marketing; Core Marketing Team Leader at Bloomberg LP.  He previously served other roles within Bloomberg LP.
  • Scott Lanciloti is now a  Director, Capital Markets at Vintage, a division of PR Newswire; he previously was a Vice President, Sales at Fidelity Investments.

Public Relations/MarComm

  •  Sandra Azzoilini is now Vice President, Audience at PR Newswire.  She previously held other roles at PR Newsire.

 

For more information on keeping your contacts up to date, visit our website.

If you have People Moves to share, please email leslie@calibercorporate.com.

 

Posted In People Moves

Partnerships, M&A and Funding | Q1 2015

Governance, Risk & Compliance

  • TRACE International, a leading business association focused on anti-bribery compliance for multinational companies, launched the first index focused specifically on global business bribery risk. The TRACE Matrix was developed with RAND Corporation to provide the business community with a powerful new tool to more adequately measure business bribery risk in foreign countries as these risks expose a company to the possibility of violating anti-corruption laws such as the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and other international anti-bribery regulations.
  • LRN announced that it will incorporate Convercent’s helpline and case management modules into its suite of ethics and compliance education and advisory services.
  • The Center for Responsible Enterprise And Trade (CREATe.org), a non-governmental organization helping companies protect intellectual property and prevent corruption, and the Ethisphere Institute, a global leader in defining and advancing the standards for ethical business practices, announced an expansion of their partnership to offer Supply Chain and Business Partner Benchmarking to members of the Business Ethics Leadership Alliance (BELA).

Capital Markets/Finance

  • DPC DATA Inc., a leading provider of disclosure data solutions for the US municipal bond market, announced a new partnership with Ipreo, a leading global provider of workflow solutions and market intelligence to capital markets and corporate professionals.  The two companies have come together to offer DPC DATA’s Filings Summary Standard report service on Ipreo’s BiDCOMP/Parity system.  Additionally, Ipreo has acquired ClearMomentum, a provider of portfolio monitoring applications to alternative asset investors and their limited partners.
  • S&P Capital IQ, the provider of research, analytics and data, has signed an agreement with GlobalView, the supplier of market data solutions for the energy and commodity industries, to deliver a comprehensive market data and network infrastructure solution.

Public Relations/MarComm

  • Rival IQ, a digital marketing analytics company, announced additional funding of nearly $1 million from existing and new investors designed to fuel the software company’s continued growth and product expansion.

 

For more information on how Caliber Corporate Advisers can help with your Partnerships, or M&A and Funding strategy, visit our website.

If you have Partnerships, M&A or Funding news to share, please email leslie@calibercorporate.com.

Posted In M&A and Funding
Posted In Partnerships in the News

Spotlight of the Month | December 2014

A conversation with Jeff Corbin, APPrise Mobile’s founder and CEO  

Apprise Mobile_LOGO-TAG_Outline_hires_4 (1)

The APPrise Mobile platform provides business line leaders with a comprehensive mobile app solution to communicate with employees, investors, partners and other audiences.

APPrise Mobile was launched in 2012 in response to growing mobile adoption.  “With the proliferation of mobile technology, we foresaw a paradigm shift, and believed that companies would need a solution to communicate with investors via their mobile devices,” said Jeff Corbin, APPrise Mobile’s founder and CEO.  “A native mobile app allows them to proactively push investor content directly to their target audiences; something responsive design or optimized websites didn’t allow for,” he explained.

The company recently rebranded itself as APPrise Mobile (it had previously been called theCOMMSapp™) to reflect their broader platform-as-a-service (PaaS) operating model for communications professionals.  Today, the APPrise family of native app communications solutions includes theIRapp® (for public companies), theEMPLOYEEapp™ (for secure employee communications), theCOMMSapp™ (for external communications) and theCONFERENCEapp™ (for hosting events and conferences).

“Due to the nature of our platform, we aren’t limited to a specific vertical to seek growth opportunities,” said Corbin.  “We are focused on the communications industry at large – internal communications, corporate communications, and investor relations.”

APPrise is committed to enhancing its platform with new functionality every quarter based on customer feedback.   The company also has a self-service model which is planned to launch in early January, enabling companies of all sizes to create their own employee app at a fraction of the time and cost of developing one independently.

“The opportunity that mobile technology has presented to the communications industry is unprecedented.  Companies can now directly push information to their target audience.  The question is how to do this.  We believe the answer is the native app, and APPrise Mobile has created a cost-effective and easy-to-implement solution,” said Corbin.

Posted In Spotlight of the Month

New and Interesting Service Providers | December 2014

Governance, Risk & Compliance

Workiva: Workiva is a leading provider of complex business reporting solutions.  Their Wdesk cloud-based product platform is designed to bring control and ease to compliance, management, risk and sustainability reporting.  The platform features an easy-to-use workspace where teams can co-author documents and reports.  Their innovative live-linking technology ensures that shared documents are synchronized and automatically updated. A full audit trail providers users with accountability and confidence for critical reports. Workiva has relevance across industries, and according to the company, their solution is used by more than 60 percent of the Fortune 500. In October, the company filed with the SEC to raise up to $100 million in an initial public offering and is expected to go public in the near future.

i-Sight: i-Sight helps some of the world’s top organizations to conduct better investigations for issues such as workplace misconduct, security incidents, criminal activity, medical fraud, or embezzlement.  Their powerful case management solution for investigations is designed to reduce corporate risk by standardizing and simplifying the investigations process so that every case is documented and defensible.  The solution is intuitive, accessible and easy to navigate.  i-Sight is relevant across a vast array of industries; their current clients include companies in financial services, insurance, infrastructure, healthcare, manufacturing, retail and food services.

 

Public Relations/MarComm

Trendkite: TrendKite is dedicated to helping PR professionals and agency teams build a timely and highly accurate picture of their brands’ media coverage with ease.  They help brands and agencies, particularly those with a Business-to-Business focus, solve problems related to PR analytics and reporting by providing them with better insight into industry trends, press activity, and market opportunities. TrendKite is relevant for a varied range of companies, and can also be impactful to the investor relations and governance, risk & compliance segments as well.  Earlier this year, the company received $3.2 million in Series A funding led by Mercury Fund and Silverton Partners.

Posted In New and Interesting Service Providers

Spotlight of the Month | November 2014

Q&A with Tyson Rose, Co-Founder and CEO of NovaShare Solutions

novashare

Q: What gap in the marketplace were you hoping to address when you co-founded NovaShare in 2013? What inspired the launch of the company?

A: Our initial problem solve was finding an efficient technology to aggregate mutual and pension fund voting records and weight those votes with the portfolio info of that particular institution. Over the course of our research and customer engagement surveys, we realized there was an even bigger opportunity in communications. More specifically, issuer to investor communications. Many companies we spoke with were finding it hard to not only identify their investors on a regular basis, but they were also finding it challenging to keep a year round relationship.

Q: Your mission statement is “The promotion of Good Governance through open and transparent dialogue between public companies and their respective investors.”  What are the challenges in bringing this to fruition?

A: Currently, the biggest challenges we face are credibility and buy in to our vision. The obstacle we face is communicating the difference in our approach to the data we gather. With time, we firmly believe our end-to-end platform will stand out on its own merit, but for now it’s about educating both issuers and investors on the value of year round engagement which can be accomplished with our platform.

Q: How is your service different than other similar offerings?

A: We’ve built a very powerful research engine with coverage of thousands of North American companies accessible to all of our users. We only aggregate data from primary sources. We refuse to use third party data in any of our solutions. And the most important differentiator is our end-to-end admin platform. This is what we believe to be the future of investor communications. Whether it’s for delivering proxy materials, or for companies doing follow-ups after key events. Our platform delivers real-time analytics and provides companies the ability to reach out to any investor with a click of a button.

Q: Why do you think NovaShare has attracted investment from companies such as Global Governance Advisers (GGA)?

A: We share the same vision and have the same hunger for doing things different. Many companies in the space will speak of their proprietary processes and tools, but the reality is that there are many similar products and services. When we met GGA they immediately saw how disruptive we could become if the right backers came on board. They decided to invest because they truly believed that we could work together to bring a fresh new approach to corporate governance.

Q: Do you have partners, and how do you decide which partnerships complement your offerings? What are the benefits to these partnerships?

A: We are currently in the process of closing a few partnership arrangements. We generally choose partners based on their core products or services and how they fit into our eco system of offerings, and vice versa. The key benefits for both sides are synergies in creating new products or services based on our complimentary offerings as well as granting access to our unique databases that we take great pride in.

Q: How do you currently inform prospective clients about your services? 

A: We like to take a personalized approach to every prospective client. One of our client managers will spend several days researching a particular company and crafting a story around how our products and services work for that particular company. We’ll call an IRO or Corporate Secretary directly and discuss what we know about that company based on our study. From there a prospective client will either see the immediate value or at least know options are available to make their jobs easier while servicing the core needs of the business.

Q: What component of your services is the biggest growth opportunity?

A: Investor communications. The opportunities for Fintech companies focused on communications are endless. As long as NovaShare continues to stay on top of new technology trends, we’ll always be able to offer more to the capital markets unlike any other generation before us.

Q: What’s one of the biggest lessons you’ve learned about the space you operate in?

Relationships and credibility are the lifeblood of any business operating in the governance and investor communications space.

Posted In Spotlight of the Month

People Moves | Sept/Oct 2014

Governance, Risk & Compliance

  • Convercent, a developer of risk-based compliance software, announced three new key appointments to its executive team, with Joe LeBas joining as Chief Strategy Officer, Chris Nixon hired as the company’s Executive Vice President of Marketing, and Rachel Gerace as Vice President of Professional Services.
  • Ethisphere announced that Scott McCleskey, an experienced senior leader in the fields of compliance and ethics, has joined the company as Senior Advisor. He most recently served as a member of the Senior Leadership Team of the Financial & Risk business of Thomson Reuters.  Additionally, Ethisphere announced that David Herrick, chief operating officer of MWW, has joined the Ethisphere Institute’s Communications Advisory Board.
  • Scott Mozarsky is now President – Cross Platform Businesses at Bloomberg BNA. Bloomberg BNA, a wholly owned subsidiary of Bloomberg, is a leading source of legal, regulatory, and business information for professionals.

Investor Relations

  • S&P Capital IQ personnel changes include Paul Cairns now serving as Real Time Solutions – Channel Sales & Alliances, EMEA (previously was Business Development Director (QuantHouse)), Glen Woo now serving as an Associate Director (from a Senior Sales Associate), Kiel LaFrance changing positions from Head of Americas Financial Modeling to Head of Americas Desktop Application, and Chris Williams changing position from VP, Head of Contributor Operations and Products to VP – Product.
  • Luke Bishop is now a Client Director, previously an Associate Director, at Investis Limited, a digital corporate communications company.  Additionally, Jennie Guay is now Global Head of Channel Relations for the company.
  • Stuart Swartz has been named President and CEO of Computershare Canada. Computershare is a global market leader in transfer agency and share registration, employee equity plans, proxy solicitation and stakeholder communications.
  • The National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI) announced the election of Mark Donohue as the 2015 Chairman of the NIRI Board of Directors. Donohue is vice president, investor relations and corporate communications for Impax Laboratories, Inc.
  • Michael Chojnacki is now Chief Executive Office at Closir, a platform for professional investors and companies to connect and engage with each other. Tim Greer has been named the new Head of Sales and Marketing of Closir, based in London.
  • Ipreo, a leading global provider of market intelligence and productivity software to both capital markets and corporate investor relations professionals, announced that it has hired Agnies Watson as EVP and Managing Director, Corporate Workflow Solutions.  Additionally, Robert Lurie has changed positions from Associate to Associate Director, Business Development & Strategy.

Capital Markets/Finance

  • John Jacobs, executive vice president of global information services at Nasdaq OMX and head of the exchange’s index business, has announced he will retire from his current role effective Jan. 2, 2015.
  • New York-based crowd-sourced earnings estimates provider Estimize has appointed Christine Short – former director of earnings research at S&P Capital IQ – vice president of media and public relations, with additional responsibility for content generation.
  • Paula DiStefano is now in Brand Strategy/Enterprise Products for Bloomberg LP. DiStefano previously served in marketing and sales roles at Bloomberg LP over the last 10+ years.

Public Relations/MarComm

  • The Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) has named Joseph P. Truncale as the new CEO of the organization. Truncale joins PRSA after spending 30 years with the National Association for Printing Leadership (NAPL), an organization that he helped guide from traditional printing into the digital age.
  • At Sprinklr, Inc., a social software platform, Anna OBrien has changed positions from Director of Strategy to Director of Strategy, EMEA and Laura Fu has changed positions from Regional Services Director, West Coast to Director of Extended Services.
  • Jeff Soriano is now Director of Marketing for SocialFlow. SocialFlow is a software company that increases distribution of owned and earned content across social media platforms.
  • Skyword, a leading content marketing platform and services provider, announced the recent appointments of Dan Baptiste and John T. Shea as vice president of brand partnerships and vice president of partner development, respectively. Baptiste and Shea previously served in sales director roles for Skyword.  Christopher Annese is now a Director, Higher Education & Brand Partnerships for the company.

For more information on keeping your contacts up to date, visit our website.

If you have People Moves to share, please email leslie@calibercorporate.com.

 

Posted In People Moves