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6 reasons why transcribing investor meetings is a no brainer

By Published On: July 14th, 2021

Publishing the transcript of your investor meetings on your website seems easy enough.

It’s simple, saves you time and money in more ways than one, and is the highest level of investor relations. Yet surprisingly, this is not the de facto practice in our African markets.

A study we conducted in January 2021 of the top 100 (by market capitalization) investor relations websites in Africa showed that 8 of the top 100 companies in the study publish transcripts from earnings calls on their corporate or investor relations websites.

Props to these 8 companies (listed below), but that’s only 1 in 13 of some of the largest organisations on the continent!

In some ways I understand why this isn’t a priority.

Converting the conversations that happen at an analyst presentation into the written form poses a practical challenge, not least because it can become very time-consuming.

What’s more, if the contents of an analyst presentation are appraised for their materiality or significance prior to publication of the content on the website or submission to a stock exchange, then a sufficiently knowledgeable and experienced executive needs to know what is material, price-sensitive information and what is not. Which is simply not practical.

But I contend that if the job is outsourced, there are almost no objections as to why a company shouldn’t produce transcripts of their investor meetings online.

Saves you time and effort, and the message lives on

Providing a transcript of the event ensures that the information is available to a broader audience for a far longer period of time than just the meeting itself, without any added effort on your part.

Converting the audio or video to written text and publishing this online gives equal access to the information for all investors and analysts 24/7, and mitigates the need for additional engagement from the company. All the work has already been done upfront.

Say goodbye to countless one-on-one meetings

All of the information you’re willing to share is disclosed at the earnings presentation – the CEO and FD make their strategy and earnings presentations respectively and management responds to all questions.

Once the transcript is made publicly available it becomes equally accessible to anyone who wants it, so there’s no need to hold additional one-on-one meetings with select analysts.

Warren Buffet lives by this – he doesn’t speak to analysts outside of earnings publications because he does not feel that it’s fair. Abiding by this keeps life simple and frees up your time to actually manage the business.

Investors really appreciate it

So many companies lose out on visibility, and new investors, because despite holding virtual events the information can’t be found anywhere after the fact. I recently received this comment under one of my LinkedIn posts questioning why more African companies don’t provide transcripts on their websites.

The world of retail and international investors has opened up and access to capital is higher than ever.

Making the effort to cater to both current and potential, local and international investors who are unable to attend your event is a great way to provide maximum visibility for your investment case.

Why wouldn’t you take advantage of all means available to communicate this to your investor community?

Ensures regulatory compliance

Investor meetings, held in person or virtually, are risky environments in that information is potentially disclosed only to attendees.

That information is price-sensitive and there are strict regulatory requirements associated with its dissemination, so ideally it should be published broadly and immediately to the general investment community.

To comply with this, publication of that content through the stock exchange website is usually the deemed channel. The corporate website is also a deemed channel of distribution, meaning once the information is published on that channel it is presumed to be widely and broadly disseminated.

If all of the content and conversations which take place at a physical analyst presentation are recorded and transcribed into text, briefly edited for correct grammar and format, and submitted to the corporate website and stock exchange website then regulatory compliance is achieved with much less effort.

Recording physical or virtual analyst presentations and submitting the file for transcription is the simplest step that companies can take to ensure regulatory compliance.

It’s easy to implement

It’s extremely easy to outsource your transcription work if you don’t have the resources within the company to carry it out.

The AfricanFinancials transcription service enables companies to quickly turn around the audio or video recordings of their analyst presentations into text that is editable, but almost immediately submittable to the stock exchange and able to be published on the corporate website.

The transcript can then be issued as a press release through the company website, AfricanFinancials.com and the stock exchange website, with the latter being the first channel to publish that information.

So for all the effort of picking up the phone and having a 5-minute conversation, you get a professional, well-formatted and almost error-free document that:

  • Elevates your investor relations to a world class standard
  • Ensures complete mitigation of the regulatory risk associated with unequal publication of information

  • Saves time and effort

  • Tells your investment story “from the horse’s mouth”

And of course this need not be limited to analyst presentations.

Much valuable information is also released at other investor meetings like AGMs. Copperbelt Energy has published the transcript of their AGM, broken down into four parts, on their website.

 

It’s also about SEO…

Lastly, your digital marketing and online investor relations efforts will benefit from doing this as well. Efficient content origination, SEO optimisation and increased brand visibility through publication of content to third party social media channels are just some of the added advantages to making the effort to transcribe your investor meetings.

 

To find out more about our transcription services, contact me on +263 77 739 4265 or email [email protected]

About the Author: Rob Stangroom

My mandate for listed companies in Africa is to commercially leverage direct contacts with retail and professional investors. AfricanFinancials is an initiative for listed companies, by listed companies to implement good communications governance and investor relations practices. Many companies don’t care about retail investors, BUT in the modern day of social and digital media theýre missing out on commercial opportunity: an investor typically is and should be a customer.
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