Just under four in five IROs view IR websites as an effective tool in engaging with institutional investors, according to the latest report on these sites by IR Magazine. This compares with just 8 percent who view websites as ineffective for institutional engagement and is a greater proportion than the 62 percent of IROs who see them as effective in dealing with retail investors.
How IROs view the utility of websites in engaging with institutional investors rises according to company size. Among IROs at small-cap companies, 72 percent see websites as effective for institutional engagement, with 6 percent seeing them as very effective. These numbers rise with every cap size to mega-cap, where 86 percent of IROs view them as effective and 19 percent very effective.
The report, which features in the fall edition of IR Magazine, also identifies how institutional investors feel about the utility of IR sections on corporate websites. When asked to rate how useful they find them, 65 percent of institutional investors say they are very useful when looking to invest in a company and 63 percent find them very useful for companies they already invest in.
Appreciation among institutional investors for website utility is highest among North American investors, where three quarters see them as very useful when looking to invest in a company. This number drops to 56 percent among Asian investors.
Further research in the report shows that the typical content included by IROs on their websites broadly matches the information institutional investors wish to see there. The most common features on an IR website are press releases, event and report schedules and a named IR contact. All of these are in the top three requested features by institutional investors.
But there are some differences between what institutional investors wish to see and what typically appears on an IR website. When asked to identify which out of 10 key features are currently available on their website, IROs list products and services as the seventh-most common item. But products and services is the joint-third key feature institutional investors look for on IR web pages.
Similarly, equity research analyst estimates do not feature as commonly as institutional investor interest in them. A quarter of North American investors identify such analyst estimates as a key feature of interest on IR websites, despite them being practically unheard of on the IR pages of North American companies. They appear on more than a third of European IR web pages, where approaching half of investors identify them as a key feature they wish to see.
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