IR News

Survey: Status Quo Investor Relations in the DACH region

The research group “Financial Communications” at the Fachhochschule St. Pölten surveys the status quo of investor relations in the DACH region. This means that for the first time there will be a comparative study on the organizational structure, degree of institutionalization, responsibilities, target audience, activities and qualifications of IROs and their expectations regarding the further development of the profession. Responding to the survey takes only 15 minutes, and the results will be published (free of charge) from the end of May on.

>> Participate here

Members ask Members: Study on Digital IR

An employee at one of our member companies is doing his Master’s thesis on “How fit is financial communication for digitalization?” This month you will have the opportunity of participating in an empirical study of listed companies in Switzerland to determine the current status of investor relations in digital transformation. Exclusive recommendations for action for the design of a ‘fit for purpose’ digital IR setup will make your participation especially worthwhile. The study is supported by the HWZ and the IR club.

2015 IRO Survey Results: Evolution of Investor Relations practices in Europe

Find below interesting results of the 2015 IRO Survey on the evolution of Investor Relations practices in Europe. The survey was conducted in November 2015 and is based on sample of 245 companies listed in Europe.


Main takeaways:

  • Head of IR: 70% of Head of IR have been in an IR role for less than ten years. 40% have been at their positions for fewer than five years. 26% of Heads of IR hold greater functions in financial communication. When that is the case (principally at small caps), the most frequent function is that of head of corporate communications. 13% are also on a management committee.
  • IR set-up: priority is given to “market” knowledge and perception in the broad sense. However, the use of digital tools remains weak. Real tendencies exist in terms of team size, budget, and responsibilities based on market capitalisation. Beyond Equity analysts and investors, a minority of IR teams manage other stakeholders: ESG (33%), retail shareholders (31%), rating agencies (27%) and credit investors (21%) Practices are relatively different among large and mid and small caps.
  • Management and IR: Allocation of management roadshows remains highly discretionary. The “carbon-free” format is developing slowly. Access to Chairman, board of directors and operational managers is in increasing demand. The three principal criteria for allocation of management roadshows are, unsurprisingly, the track record/quality of previous roadshows organised by a broker (targeting, programme, logistics, feedbacks), the quality of relations with the analyst and with the Corporate Access teams. Banking relations and Extel rankings are also taken into account, but to a lesser extent.
  • IR and regulation: MiFID2 and FCA/Corporate Access remain seen as, perhaps wrongly, “non subjects”. The IROs questioned estimate their level of knowledge on MiFID2 to be very limited, but they do not feel very concerned.

Download the results here.

CIRO (Certified Investor Relations Officer) modules for Swiss companies

The educational program CIRO is offered by DIRK and takes place in Germany. It consists of several modules. For people interested in only visiting single modules this is possible as well.

Please see the detailed program and all dates of the courses here (German only).

Digital trends in SMI Expanded companies reveals prioritisation of CSR content

Research into the websites and digital presence of SMI Expanded companies has revealed that while 85% companies offer detailed CSR content on their company websites, only 20% of companies offer their audience an in-depth explanation of their business model. The findings come from a review of all SMI Expanded companies by Investis. It has used its IQ methodology, which benchmarks company websites against 200 independently-defined best practice criteria to reveal the latest digital trends.

Findings include:

  • 80% of companies present a good explanation of their governance on their website, with Credit Suisse offering a bespoke section of their website with in-depth information.
  • While most companies offer some form of ‘About Us’ content, some such as Givaudan provide compelling information that enhances the company’s business and investment proposition.
  • Only 50% of SMI Expanded websites are fully-responsive, meaning many companies are not offering a good user experience for visitors on mobile devices.
  • The majority of the SMI Expanded make only basic use of social media, but Nestle are moving ahead with dynamic social content and promotion across its website that further promotes the brand.

    Companies interested in seeing how their websites perform against the IQ criteria can request a complimentary report. For more information, please click here .

Back to Basics – Prioritising Your Governance Initiatives

A webinar on Governance in the Swiss Market presented by the Capital Group, Nasdaq and Morrow Sodali

•00:00 – 02:43 – Opening and Introduction to Speakers (Ali Saribas, Morrow Sodali)
•02:43 – 12:28 – “The Governance Triangle” – Setting the Context (John Wilcox, Morrow Sodali)
•12:28 – 28:17 – Investor Trends & Changing Swiss Market Dynamics (Patrick Hughes, Nasdaq)
•28:17 – 37:47 – Governance from an Investor Perspective (Rob Beale, Capital Group)
•37:47 – 51:11 – Investor Engagement & 2016 Governance Trends (Ali Saribas, Morrow Sodali)
•51:11 – 59:07 – Q&A

Free download of the recording available here.

DIRK Trend Indicator, Spring 2016

Please find below the results of the so called Stimmungsbarometer”-survey carried out by DIRK with support of C.I.R.A. and the IR club Switzerland. It is a survey conducted semi-annually among IR managers.

Besides the regularly asked for personal evaluation of the economic situation, this spring the focus was on “Quarterly reporting and guidance of analysts”.

Read more on:

Evaluation of economic situation

Interim reporting and analyst guidance

Investor Relations in Germany - Order the book here

Dr. Kristin Köhler, CEO Center for Corporate Reporting wrote a book “Investor Relations in Deutschland” discussing financial communication of corporate entities and their relation with investors. Even if empirical results relate to the German market only, insights and approaches can be translated to Swiss Investor Relations as well. Therefore, the IR club Switzerland is happy to provide its members with a free example (German only).

As an IR Club Switzerland member, please order by email to rea.wagner@irclub.ch

If you are not a member yet, fill out the membership request now and receive the book as well.

Swiss Ownership Trends - Expanded Analysis of Institutional Investment

Ipreo - in cooperation with the Swiss IR club – analysed the ownership of the constituents of the combined free float of Swiss listed securities in the Swiss Performance Index (“SPI”) for institutional ownership trends and themes. At of February 2016, there were 230 constituents in the SPI.
Ipreo specifically analysed institutional changes by sector, market capitalisation, region, turnover and investment style to uncover the types of institutions that are most active within the SPI. Sectors have been looked at on both price performance and institutional activity to understand the correlation between the two. Additionally, trading venues were analysed against the major indices to look at trading transparency over the period.


Key Point of the Analysis are listed here:

  • Norges Bank remains the largest holder in Swiss equities, with Healthcare also continuing to be their preferred sector followed by Financials.
  • Second largest holder UBS, bought across most sectors with the exception of Consumer Services and Technology.
  • A number of sovereign wealth funds feature in the top buyers namely Singapore’s Temasek, Norges and Qatar Investment Authority. Consumer services and Financials were the main beneficiaries of this activity.
  • Once again, Franklin Resources features twice in the top ten sellers. Templeton Global Advisors continues to lead the sellers, now only holding positions in the Healthcare, Financials and Industrials. The Industrials sector is again the only one to have benefitted from increases from Templeton and the firm is the only institution amongst the top sellers to have bought Industrials.
  • Top buyer Credit Suisse, increased its exposure to all sectors except Consumer Services and Utilities, they are the third largest holder of Swiss equities.
  • North American investors are the largest holders in all macro sectors bar Energy and Utilities, where Domestic demand is highest.
  • Domestic investors are in the minority in Large and Mega cap companies. North American investment continues to have a preference towards Large and Mega cap stocks.
  • Western European investors were the largest buyers adding $1.4bn which was entirely offset by sales from North American investors of $4.7bn. All other regions posted minor changes over the period.

For more information, see the details of the study here.

Global Trends in Investor Relations 2015: A Survey Analysis of IR Practices in Western Europe 2015

Find below interesting results of the BNY Mellon study on "Global Trends in Investor Relations: A Survey Analysis of IR Practices in Western Europe 2015"

Key findings of the study include:

  • Time spent on NDRs has declined across the board; in terms of destination, Frankfurt has moved into the top five travel targets.
  • Western European C-suite officers outpace their North American peers in terms of numbers of meetings; they focus more on existing investors than do companies in North American and globally.
  • There has been a shift in the metrics used to evaluate IR effectiveness, from qualitative (e.g., quality of investor one-on-meetings) to quantitative (e.g., stock price), reversing a trend towards the use of qualitative metrics we had observed since 2010, although the use of qualitative metrics is still lower than in North America (the trend reversal can only be shown by referencing the 2013 global report).
  • A surprisingly low percentage of Western European IROs attend and present to Board of Director meetings versus the North American and global averages, and this is a significant drop since the 2013 survey; over half (54%) do not attend BOD meetings at all, compared to 45% of North American IROs and 44% of IROs globally.
  • Meetings of members of the Board of Directors with investors have increased noticeably since 2013, with about half saying they have a company policy to hold these meetings. 

Global Trends in Investor Relations 2015: A Survey Analysis of IR Practices in Western Europe 2015 (PDF, 6.7MB, opens in a new window) Download the results here