Books & Articles
How Investor Relations Firms Can Boost the Market Prospects of Small Companies
Wharton Finance and Investment
When executives of Astronics Corp. were preparing to spin off a printing and packaging division in early 2003, they almost overlooked a key player — the company’s biggest institutional investor, mutual fund giant Fidelity Investments.
Had Fidelity spurned the spin-off and sold its shares, it could have “devastated” the share prices of the tiny company (market capitalization: $55 million) and its spin-off, says Deborah K. Pawlowski, a veteran investor relations consultant who had just been brought on to help in the process.
Hey Look at Me! With research coverage scarce, some companies are seeking professional help
IR firms proved their worth in a recent study by Gregory Miller of Harvard Business School and Brian Bushee of The Wharton School. For a small- or microcap company that craves more attention, an outside IR firm can perform two valuable tasks: help craft a persuasive story about the company and then find the right audience for it. “You have to understand what kind of an investment you are in the eyes of an institutional investor,” says Deborah Pawlowski, chief executive of Kei Advisors, a Buffalo-based IR firm. “You need to know what your key characteristics are so you can identify the kind of investor that wants what you are.”