Molson Coors appoints sell-sider as new IR head

Sep 12, 2018
Mark Swartzberg to join beverage company October 15

Molson Coors has appointed Mark Swartzberg as its new global vice president of investor relations.

Swartzberg, who joins Molson Coors on October 15, will fill the vacant IR lead role, following the retirement of Dave Dunnewald in June. Dunnewald had been with Molson Coors, or its pre-merger companies, for 37 years and has worked in an investor relations capacity since 1995.

Swartzberg will report into Tracey Joubert, Molson Coors’ chief financial officer. He spent the last 16 years as managing director of equity research at Stifel Nicolaus, where he covered beverage companies. Prior to this he worked at Shearson Lehman Hutton, Bowles Hollowell Conner & Co, Salomon Smith Barney and ABN Amro.

‘With nearly two decades of experience covering the beverage industry, Mark’s deep knowledge of our business combined with his understanding of the capital markets make him the ideal candidate to strengthen Molson Coors’ relationships within the financial community and enhance our overall investor relations program,’ Joubert says in a statement.

Swartzberg is the latest in a long line of sell-side analysts moving into corporate IR. The number of former analyst IROs increased by 333 percent between 2000 and 2016, according to NIRI research.

One academic study last year found that hiring former analyst IROs could lead to better stock performance, increased liquidity, more analyst coverage and greater institutional investor holdings. But other industry commentators have cautioned that hiring former sell-siders isn’t a silver bullet.

‘Analysts definitely understand the tactical and strategic aspect of what IR is in-house. But what they won’t understand until they get in-house is what it’s like to manage a very complicated internal and external stakeholder base,’ Peter McDermott, principal of the corporate affairs practice at Korn Ferry, told IR Magazine last year. ‘The IR officer has to build a productive relationship with everyone from the CEO and CFO to public affairs, the general counsel, HR and the operations heads.’

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