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July 8, 2010

Shocker! More Companies Holding Virtual-Only Shareholder Meetings

Well, it's really not that shocking given the huge cost (and time) savings and the fact that most of the companies holding virtual-only meetings are pretty small. But it's shocking to me as I thought I was keeping pretty good tabs on what is happening in this space since it's a topic I have written about for over a decade.

I just dug out a good half-dozen companies that have conducted all-virtual annual meetings this year that I didn't know about (thus, in addition to these that I blogged about a few months ago) from inspecting this list from Broadridge. Recall that Broadridge itself held a virtual annual meeting last year, as noted in my blog here.

Note that Broadridge's list doesn't break out "all virtual" from "hybrid" meetings. There is a huge difference between these types of meetings as some shareholders have been fighting against companies holding "all virtual" meetings since there is no opportunity to confront management and the board in person. In comparison, hybrid meetings combine the in person experience while providing opportunity for meeting input online - the best of all worlds for shareholders who may not be able to travel. I have broken out which companies have done all virtual amidst these "FAQs on Electronic Stockholders' Meetings" (it's the 5th FAQ in Section A).

Note that Gary Lutin's "The Shareholder Forum" will hold a roundtable on the topic on Tuesday in NYC. And remember to tune in for our webcast coming up in September - "Holding the Virtual Annual Meeting: Factors to Consider and Practice Pointers" - featuring panelists whose companies have tested the virtual waters recently...


- Broc Romanek

Posted by broc at 8:14 AM




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