30 IR stars in 30 days: Gunhild Grieve of RWE
IR Magazine has a long history of honoring those men, women and companies around the world that excel at investor relations. In celebration of 30 years of IR Magazine, we selected 30 IR stars that have shone particularly brightly over the past three decades and will be posting one profile each day for 30 days, giving you the gift of an IR advent calendar.
Gunhild Grieve from RWE is a multiple IR Magazine Award winner, with an innovative approach to IR and corporate access, including working with Portugal’s EDP to set up a new, utilities-focused conference in 2016. She is also a clear voice in the IR community, speaking at IR Magazine’s events on everything from Women in IR to crisis management – with Grieve most recently, at the IR Magazine Global Forum in October, discussing the energy firm’s response to a court ruling halting its plans to mine lignite below a 12,000-year-old patch of the Hambach Forest following protests.
Grieve is no stranger to an IR challenge, discussing such events even as they play out: the Global Forum took place less than a week after the court’s temporary block on RWE’s plans. But it is the ‘reintroduction and repositioning of the new RWE’ following the IPO of its ‘much larger subsidiary innogy’ in 2016 that she describes as one of the biggest IR challenges she has faced over the past decade.
‘The value of the company was largely driven by the majority holding in innogy although we did not have any strategic or financial control in the subsidiary,’ she explains. ‘The financial drivers of the remaining core businesses were not well understood or transparent, and the management team was unknown. The stock was therefore a playing field for short-term traders.’
The team fought back, though. ‘After taking the necessary time to define the equity story and prepare the management team, we held a capital markets day followed by individual break-out sessions with operational management and a joint roadshow with the CEO and CFO in all relevant financial centers,’ recalls Grieve. ‘The share price development speaks for itself.’
Stay tuned for more IR stars this week and pick up a copy of the winter issue of IR Magazine to see the full list.
A version of this article was published in the winter 2018 issue of IR Magazine – the 30th anniversary issue of the industry’s premier publication.