The tech approach of award-winner Iberdrola

Jul 10, 2015
<p>The Spanish utility incorporates apps, interactive tools and an investor discussion forum into its investor relations program</p>

At last week’s IR Magazine Awards – Europe 2015, Iberdrola walked away with three gongs, including the coveted prize for best use of technology. So what is it about the Spanish utilities’ IR tech that sets it apart?

A good place to look for the answer is the IR Magazine Investor Perception Study ‒ Europe 2015, which includes in-depth interviews with the top-ranked companies from our survey of European investors and analysts.

The study includes an interview with Ignacio Cuenca, head of investor relations at Iberdrola. It reports that Cuenca has ‘embraced technological opportunities’ and uses tools such as ‘an IR app and one of the best web-based investor discussion forums.’

The research also includes the following comment from a buy-sider based in the Netherlands: ‘Iberdrola uses the internet in a way that is helpful to analysts and investors. The website is interactive and more user-friendly than others I use. You can find analysts’ consensus on there, which I appreciate. There is also a mobile app, which is useful for when I’m out of the office.’

Let’s have a quick look at Iberdrola’s tech tools in more detail.

IR app
IR apps are now commonplace (though certainly not a must-have) at listed companies. Iberdrola decided to take the plunge last year, releasing a multilingual app (Spanish and English) with versions for the iPad, iPhone and Android devices. ‘At this moment, more than 6,000 people have this app, and I think it is a way to connect better with our shareholders… because it is a quick instrument, a quick tool, in order to be updated about the company,’ said Cuenca, speaking to IR Magazine at last week’s Europe Awards in London.

Online shareholder forum
Launched in January 2012, Iberdrola’s online shareholder forum – called On Line Shareholders (OLS) – allows stock holders to make inquiries to the company and also open them up to other investors. When we looked into OLS for an article two years ago, we reported that it receives an average of 3,000 visits a day, with numbers peaking around corporate events such as results announcements or the annual general meeting.

Iberdrola's On Line Shareholders system
The On Line Shareholders portal on Iberdrola's website. Click on image for a larger version

Other website tools  
As befits a best-for-tech award winner, Iberdrola’s website contains a range of other digital tools to help shareholders, especially retail investors, monitor their holdings and keep up to date with corporate developments.

There are calculators to help site visitors work out the value of their dividends or share holdings, including for ADRs. There is an interactive charting tool that displays, compares and exports data (financial and non-financial) of your choosing. And as you would expect from a leading IR player, there is audio and video content from recent results announcements.

Iberdrola website
Video of Iberdrola delivering its first quarter results

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