The Rise of Virtual Shareholder Meetings
In 2020, there was a meteoric rise of virtual annual general meetings, triggered by the COVID-19 global health crisis. This swift change came with many lessons learned on what worked well and what did not.
Industry-Informed New Recommended Practices for Virtual Shareholder Meetings
To reflect on these lessons and develop new recommendations a multi-stakeholder working group comprised of various industry parties was created. This group produced the Report of The 2020 Multi-Stakeholder Working Group on Practices For Virtual Shareholder Meetings’, published by the Rutgers Law School Center for Corporate Law and Governance.
A Virtual Shareholder Meeting Checklist Built for Corporate Secretaries
This checklist combines Computershare’s decades of annual meeting experience across the globe with the industry-informed new recommendations detailed in the report published by Rutgers. It helps Corporate Secretaries and other governance professionals prepare for a 2021 annual meeting that is all virtual, or includes a virtual component with an in-person one.
Virtual Shareholder Meeting Guiding Principles:
- Embrace the opportunity for broad investor participation as part of your wider shareholder engagement strategies
- Promote equitable and equal treatment of investor participants at your shareholder meeting
- Provide opportunities for meaningful engagement between investors and your board
- Communicate the many benefits of your virtual or hybrid meeting
- Utilize technology to foster meaningful open dialogue with your shareholders