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For the same publication's reports of Broadridge's December initiative relating to SEC regulation of communications, referenced in the article below, see

For Broadridge's announcements of the campaign reported below, see

Note: Broadridge was one of the companies that provided invited leadership support of the Shareholder Forum's public interest program to develop standards for electronic communications relating to shareholder meetings.


Securities Technology Monitor, March 29, 2011 article


Broadridge to U.S. Corporations: Tell Employees to Vote

March 29, 2011
Chris Kentouris

Richard Daly, chief executive of Broadridge Financial, is lobbying 1,000 of the U.S. largest corporations to encourage their employee shareholders to vote.

“In 2010, just one in 20 individual retail investors voiced their opinions about the companies they invested in by exercising their fundamental shareholder right. That compares to recent historical levels four to five times as high,” said Daly who spoke at the National Press Club in Washington DC on Tuesday morning. “Public companies need to understand the seriousness of this issue and act to reverse this troubling decline to get each of their individual investors --- and all individual investors generally --- engaged with their companies.”

Although Daly said that Broadridge won’t benefit financially from increased voter participation he did encourage corporations to facilitate “two-way digital communications” for their employee shareholders and other individual shareholders. In March, Broadridge, the world’s largest proxy mailing and voting firm said that investors could cast their votes for or against corporate agendas through Verizon’s new Apple iPhone 4, as well as the Blackberry, Android, Microsoft, tablets and other smartphone platforms

Daly said that a relatively small increase in voting participation by employees could meaningfully increase individual investor voting participation from five percent per year to twenty percent or more annually.

“Companies that can distinguish their investors’ opinions from others’ will more easily have the strength and confidence to stay on course and create value,” said Daly. “There is no greater show of support than the ballot, or in this case, the proxy.

Daly’s speech was the second one in recent months to address waning retail participation in annual meetings. However, in the last one in December he called on the SEC to give public companies the right to social media technology to communicate with their shareholders.

Both presentations come amidst the Securities and Exchange Commission’s attempt to raise retail participation in shareholder meetings and reform so-called proxy plumbing. After January 2008, when the SEC adopted new rules under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to ”facilitate the use of electronic shareholder forums by public companies and their shareholders, Broadridge developed its proprietary Investor Network.

So far, retail investors haven’t completely embraced electronic voting as shown by voting rates for issuers adopting the Securities and Exchange Commission’s so-called notice and access rule. Over 3,000 corporations have decided to take advantage of the notice and access rule, according to Broadridge, saving $700 million in printing and postage fees. However, only four to five percent of retail investors voted when they received a notice of the availability of their proxy materials electronically through the notice and access rule. That’s a far cry from the 20 percent who voted when they received a full set of proxy materials and ballots through the mail.

Effective 2007, the notice and access rule lets U.S. corporations allow investors to automatically receive a notice in the mail on where they can go online to find their annual reports and other proxy materials. Once there, the investors can cast their votes for or against corporate agendas from a keyboard.


©2011 Securities Technology Monitor and SourceMedia, Inc.




This Forum program is open, free of charge, to anyone concerned with investor interests in the development of standards for conducting shareholder meetings with electronic participation. As stated in the posted Conditions of Participation, the Forum's purpose is to provide decision-makers with access to information and a free exchange of views on the issues presented in the program's Forum Summary. Each participant is expected to make independent use of information obtained through the Forum, subject to the privacy rights of other participants.  It is a Forum rule that participants will not be identified or quoted without their explicit permission.

The organization of this Forum program was encouraged by Walden Asset Management, and is proceeding with the invited leadership support of Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc. and Intel Corporation to address issues relevant to broad public interests in marketplace practices, rather than investor decisions relating to only a single company. The Forum may therefore invite program support of several companies that can provide both expertise and examples of leadership relating to the issues being addressed.

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