Sessions by Day


Saturday, June 9, 2018
Pre-Conference Seminar - Understanding Earnings (Separate registration)

Room: Palmer 1

If you work with earnings as part of your IR or corporate communications role, but are not a finance specialist, then this course is for you. In just one day, we will help you understand accounting information, be able to identify headline points and raise the pertinent questions around earnings, all by looking through the eyes of your target audiences. Separate registration required. Click here to register. 

9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday, June 10, 2018
Pre-Conference Seminar - Think Like an Analyst (Separate registration)

Room: Palmer 1

Learn to look through the eyes of one of your key target audiences. Find out how analysts think, how they build their models and what pushes their buttons. This course will put you in the shoes of an analyst so that you can see things from their perspective. Exercises include interpreting how guidance affects an analyst’s model and identifying the key assumptions in consensus. Separate registration required. Click here for more information.

8:30 AM - 1:30 PM
Pre-Conference Seminar - Best in Class Investor Presentations and Investor Days (Separate registration)

Room: Palmer 2

This strategic half-day workshop will appeal to IR professionals of all levels. Learn the key elements for a successful investor presentation through instructional theory and interactive small group breakouts. The workshop focuses on the two key forms of communication that help achieve a premium valuation – the Non-Deal Roadshow and the Investor Day. Separate registration required. Click here for more information.

8:30 AM - 12:30 PM
What to Do When the Barbarians Are At Your Gate: A Shareholder Activism Bootcamp

Room: Margaux 2

What to Do When the Barbarians Are At Your Gate: A Shareholder Activism Bootcamp

Sponsored by Vinson & Elkins LLP

Learn how you can protect your company from a costly attack in this “Shareholder Activism Bootcamp”.

1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
IR Strategy and Planning: IRO “Teach In”

Room: Margaux 1

Edelman Financial Communications: IR Strategy and Planning: IRO “Teach In”
 
Back by popular demand from AC 2017, please join this dynamic and interactive two-hour session focused on peer to peer learnings for setting and executing IR strategy.

1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Global IR Summit - Sponsored by BNY Mellon

Room: Lafleur 1 & 2

This two-part discussion will focus on two key global trends in Investor Relations that affect US and international IR professionals. These sessions are designed to provide a forum for education and discussion about important IR topics in a global context. Whether you practice IR in Seattle or in Singapore, these sessions will allow you to share experiences and learn best practices from your global IR peers.

Part 1: Embracing Diverse IR Skill Sets to Maximize Your IR Activities
Part 2: Who is Buying Your Equity Today? How to Engage with the Changing Shareholder Base

3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
New to NIRI Conference Orientation Session

Room: Palmer 2

Meet other first-time conference attendees and learn what you need to know to optimize your Conference experience.

4:00 PM - 4:30 PM
Monday, June 11, 2018
Conference Welcome & Orientation

Room: Latour Ballroom

Welcome to #NIRI18! Learn what's on the agenda, what's new this year, and how to optimize your Conference experience.

8:30 AM - 8:45 AM
Opening Keynote: How Technology Is Shaping the Capital Markets of Tomorrow

Room: Latour Ballroom

Opening Keynote by Adena Friedman, President & CEO of Nasdaq.

8:45 AM - 9:30 AM
Unlocking the Power of Financial Media with CNBC’s Brian Sullivan

Room: Latour Ballroom

Award winning business news coverage has the incredible power to shape market perceptions, influence the strongest leaders and, most importantly, set the record straight for everyone.  CNBC’s Worldwide Exchange Anchor and Senior National Correspondent Brian Sullivan will take us through the exciting world of financial media and award winning news coverage.  Mr. Sullivan will discuss the shared mission and unique relationship of investor relations and the financial media.   Attendees will learn how to engage top notch reporters, leading television personalities and digital journalists – these are just few of the media skills to be learned when Brian Sullivan takes center stage at NIRI’s annual conference.

9:35 AM - 10:25 AM
NIRI Advocacy Update

Room: Latour Ballroom

NIRI President and CEO Gary LaBranche, Board Chair-Elect Ron Parham, and Immediate Past Chair Valerie Haertel will provide an overview of NIRI’s primary regulatory priorities, which include proxy advisor reform, short-selling disclosure, and equity ownership transparency. 

10:25 AM - 11:00 AM
SRT Luncheon: Our Newest Culture Warriors – Activist CEOs

Room: Alsace 2

This session will explore implications of this phenomenon on public companies and their investor relations officers.

*Please note: Senior Roundtable membership and advance registration required to attend

12:00 PM - 1:20 PM
The Changing Nature of Activism

Room: Margaux 2

In this blended session, hear from a panel of experts followed by an interactive workshop. While the number of activist funds has increased, the bulk of the assets under management remains concentrated in major activist funds. However, a relatively new entrant to the landscape – the “reluctivist” – is gathering steam, as traditional money managers are taking more of an activist role with companies. A critical piece of being prepared for a brand crisis is building consistent and accurate data about your brand and reputation before a problem hits. 
 

1:20 PM - 2:50 PM
Using the Proxy as a Communications Tool: Getting to the FINISH LINE with Better Outcomes

Room: Margaux 1

Obtaining a proxy vote is a mission critical event for the IR and Legal teams. The proxy process has evolved to become a key communications tool as IR professionals partner with their General Counsels and other internal constituents to effectively connect with their shareholders and proxy advisory firms.  You will learn how to educate and inform proxy advisors on your corporate practices to encourage recommendation FOR your proposals. 

1:20 PM - 2:50 PM
IR Practitioner Situation Room

Room: Mouton 1

The IR Situation Room is a carefully structured, collaborative session that gives participants the opportunity to work together to solve each other’s real-life IR challenges in a consultation-style setting. Participants will be randomly assigned to tables of 8 to work through real IR challenges with other IR professionals, benefitting from new perspectives from a mix of firms, industries, and experience levels. Every participant will come away with advice and ideas that are relevant to them personally, so come armed with a challenge that needs to be solved.

1:20 PM - 2:50 PM
Pitch Your Stock Like a Sell-Side Analyst

Room: Lafleur 1&2

Learn how to pitch your company’s stock like a sell-side analyst. This session will be very interactive and will shed some light on what analysts do after they put down the phone with you. Come prepared with your company’s “elevator pitch” and learn how to fine-tune it for maximum impact.

1:20 PM - 2:50 PM
In the Transaction Trenches

Room: Margaux 2

Transactions are on the rise. And if every transaction was easy, we wouldn’t need this session!  Hear from a group of IR professionals who have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly, through a variety of transaction types such as spin-outs, reverse mergers, hostile takeovers, and traditional M&A. This session will provide insight into the special requirements needed to effectively communicate during the course of a significant corporate transaction. What happens before, during, and most importantly, after the public announcement?  What is a good versus a bad outcome? And, how do you report progress and prepare ideas for the Executive team and the Board of Directors? Hear the war stories from IR professionals who have seen it all. 

3:10 PM - 4:10 PM
The IR Family Feud

Room: Mouton 2

Are you ready to play the Feud?  Join NIRI’s first ever adaptation of the classic game show to see what the “Survey Says”! Two teams of IR professionals compete to guess the top answers to investor relations questions, including questions related to the general practice of investor relations and the day-to-day experience of IR professionals, along with some that will have a fun and whimsical perspective of the profession.

3:10 PM - 4:10 PM
Blockchain & Cryptocurrency 101

Room: Lafleur 1&2

There has been a lot of buzz about terms like "bitcoin," "blockchain," and "cryptocurrency”. But what exactly are they? And how might they impact investor relations? Blockchain and cryptocurrency are not fads that only a few niche players engage in – these are becoming mainstream vehicles with huge financial impact. Companies need IR professionals who are conversant in these new technologies. In this crash course, you will hear simple explanations of these concepts by two blockchain experts, followed by a discussion about how these financial trends can play a role in a company’s capital structure.

3:10 PM - 4:10 PM
IR Teams in Crisis – How to Build and Maintain Stakeholder Trust

Room: Margaux 1

Trust, whether among investors, regulators, employees, customers, or other stakeholders, is a function of fulfilling expectations. But too often in crisis leaders become self-protective, and inadvertently cause shareholders and others to lose trust and confidence in them. This session will focus on the drivers of trust, on ways to anticipate and inventory expectations of investors, and ways to make sure that investor expectations are met not only in the early phases of the crisis but as the crisis continues to unfold.

3:10 PM - 4:10 PM
Defining Best in Class IR

Room: Lafleur 1&2

Earning the trust and respect of internal and external audiences is a professional motivation for investor relations professionals. In addition to implementing best practices, what can be done to earn top honors and create value for issuers? In this session, key members of the financial community – analyst, investor and executive – discuss the characteristics that define award winning IR programs and reveal the professional qualities of the most respected IR professionals. Gregg Lampf of Ciena Corporation, an award winning IRO, will ask candid questions to discover what drives analysts and investors to nominate IR professionals in IR Magazine and Institutional Investor awards.

4:20 PM - 5:20 PM
From Complexity to Clarity – Integrated Messaging Development

Room: Margaux 1

Most investor communications and presentations contain reams of content and data – but leave investors unclear as to the key reasons to invest in the company. As the pace of change and demands on our time increase, corporate presentations are often created in a short time frame – without the strategic thinking needed to develop clear, compelling messages.

4:20 PM - 5:20 PM
MiFID II and its Impact on Your Investor Relations Program

Room: Mouton 1

We’re six months into the new world of MiFID II – the regulation requiring institutional investors doing business in Europe to pay separately for trading and research - and there are still many unanswered questions. What is it and what does it mean for banks, the buy side, and IR? How will this disruption to the sell-side redefine the future? This compelling session will help IR professionals understand the potential implications from MiFID II and what it means for key stakeholders.

4:20 PM - 5:20 PM
What the Board Wants to Know vs Needs to Know?

Room: Margaux 2

The investment community landscape is undergoing disruptive changes – the rise in passive investing and shareholder activism, the shrinking sell-side, and the increasing demand for interaction with board members. Boards of Directors want a deeper understanding of their company’s investor relations efforts, including investor messaging, shareholder engagement strategies, and ultimately, value creation opportunities for shareholders. As a result, Board-level reporting is becoming more sophisticated. What do Directors want to know, and what do they need to know? Hear from Board members and senior management on the types of reporting that is most valuable, topical areas where they feel under-briefed, and the interactions with IR professionals they find the most insightful.

4:20 PM - 5:20 PM
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
SRT Networking Breakfast (By invitation only)

Room: Alsace 2

Enjoy great conversation and more networking time with the many NIRI Senior Roundtable members attending #NIRI18 at this SRT-exclusive breakfast.

7:30 AM - 8:30 AM
NIRI NextGen Networking Breakfast

Room: Alsace 1

Enjoy networking with the next generation of leaders in investor relations.

*For professionals who have been working in IR for less than 5 years

7:30 AM - 8:30 AM
Bulls, Bears, Unicorns, and Proxy Wars: The Battle for Clarity and Common Sense in Today’s Capital Markets

Room: Latour Ballroom

Stacey Cunningham, President of the NYSE Group, will discuss the current state of today's capital markets and challenges ahead with NIRI Board Chair Lee Ahlstrom, IRC.

8:30 AM - 9:15 AM
ESG Goes Mainstream

Room: Latour Ballroom

The emphasis on ESG investing has increasingly gained momentum as a key investor focus or a “preference” screen.  Inflows into narrowly focused SRI funds focused on “sin” stocks are dwindling while investing in funds that have an ESG scorecard are growing and requests for additional disclosures to companies are skyrocketing. This is a board level topic and one that IROs must have a seat at the table for. Hear from a panel of diverse and influential buy-side investors who assess ESG factors in light of how operating decisions impact a company’s long-term risk profile. Gain insights into their “ESG scorecard” - how they assess companies across all industries - and better understand what types of questions and disclosures are critical to attracting and maintaining these investors.

9:30 AM - 10:30 AM
Industry Breakouts

Room: various

Network with your industry peers to discuss hot topics and trends affecting your industry. Choose the group discussion that most closely aligns with your industry or interest.

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Rivel Research Group Lunch and Learn: Perception Studies - Why Bother?

Room: Lafleur 1&2

Sponsored by Rivel Research Group

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
Business Wire Lunch and Learn: The Future of Financial Media

Room: Mouton 2

Sponsored by Business Wire

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
Nasdaq Lunch and Learn: Active Replacing Passive & The Evolution of the Activist Mindset

Room: Margaux 1

Sponsored by Nasdaq

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
Corbin Advisors Lunch and Learn: Investor Days - Expertise, Strategies, and Tactics to Maximize Your ROI

Room: Margaux 2

Find out what ultimate success looks like from experienced IR professionals and consultants.  This research-based, interactive panel discussion will cover buy-side research, best and worst practices and actionable recommendations, as well as provide ample time for Q&A.

Sponsored by Corbin Advisors

12:15 PM - 1:15 PM
Creating Investor Intimacy: Compelling Site Visits, Trade Shows, Factory Tours, & Conferences

Room: Mouton 2

Marketing execution often focuses on earnings calls, investor presentations, analyst days – the bread and butter IR tools.  But the most valuable investor interactions may take place in front of your product or visiting a factory site. Getting out into the field, leveraging a trade show, bringing your shareholders to see your product in action – All of these can be compelling ways to help investors get to know your company and its products.

This session gives insight into one of the most valuable and least discussed element of an IR professional’s tool kit. Three award winning IROs will share how they have each utilized these events to build intimacy and generate lasting relationships with current and prospective shareholders.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Earnings Guidance: Value-creating or value-destructive?

Room: Lafleur 1&2

Some corporate leaders have begun opting out of providing earnings guidance, arguing that short-term decisions to beat guidance will be value-destructive in the long run. Others argue that providing guidance creates value because it reduces shareholder lawsuits, increases analyst following, and reduces uncertainty.  An IR professional needs to be an informed and active participant in the debate and discussion that ensues when a company is considering whether or not to provide guidance, or making the decision to terminate or change its current practice. This session aims to equip IR professionals with the necessary information to make the business case for decision-making related to pros and cons for providing guidance based on research and facts, not just opinions.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
Double Dipping - Combination Jobs for IR Professionals

Room: Margaux 2

The world of IR is expanding to incorporate jobs covering multiple business segments in an effort to be more strategic: IR & Corporate Communications, IR & Treasury, IR & Corporate/Business Development, to name a few.  What exists today and is there a combination that makes the most sense? How do the multiple functions overlap – is it seamless, or more work?  This story telling discussion by IR practitioners who are “Double Dipping” will discuss how they found themselves in their combination job, the potentially new ways they engage the C-Suite, and how they work across their organizations for cross-functional collaboration.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
A Buy-Sider’s View of Valuing Companies

Room: Margaux 1

Every IR professional needs to be up to speed on changes impacting institutional investors, and how they value companies in similar or distinct markets. In a rapidly changing market environment, the portfolio manager’s view of drivers for valuing companies is changing. Surprise – it’s not always company specific. Hear from an active portfolio manager what every Investor Relations professional needs to know to stay ahead of these shifts, and discover how this can help you to better articulate to your executive leadership team and Board of Directors changes in current and expected valuations, whether for a newly public company or an established one.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM
The ABCs of ESG

Room: Lafleur 1&2

ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) investing continues to be on the rise. By some accounts, ESG investing has grown by more than 97 percent globally in the past 20 years. In dollar value, the number has gone from tens of billions to hundreds of trillions, and the number of investment funds has increased from 10s to 1000s. The issue has captured the spotlight even more so as governance teams that vote the proxy are increasingly using ESG in their decision-making process. But what exactly does ESG mean for the IR practitioner? How can you best position your company to be front footed from an ESG standpoint?

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Wall Streeters Are the New Wave of IROs - What Can We Learn?

Room: Margaux 2

IR jobs are being taken by storm by sell-siders, buy-siders, and bankers. They're already well-known to CEOs and CFOs as knowledgeable about companies, industries, and the capital markets. They're regarded as research-intensive, high-energy, articulate, influential, and able to hit the ground running. They've experienced IR from many companies and have strong views about best practices. What can we learn from Wall Streeters who have successfully transitioned to IR?

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
The ‘Right’ Approach to Investor Targeting

Room: Margaux 1

Investor targeting is critical to ensure that a company’s shareholders are aligned with its strategic outlook and should be in integral element of your investor relations strategy. There’s now more choice than ever before and no ‘one size fits all’ solution when it comes to investor targeting. Some programs completely insource investor targeting and others outsource. There’s no right answer. The question is - which is best for me and how do I effectively execute an investor targeting program? In this session, multiple IR practitioners will discuss their experiences in building a targeting program, representing each alternative and articulating the value they offer: self-serve technology, sell-side corporate access, corporate access firms, outsourced targeting campaigns.

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Demystifying the IRC Credential

Room: Mouton 2

Do you plan on sitting for the Investor Relations Charter (IRC®) examination this year? Do you have questions on how to prepare and what to expect? Participate in this timely and interactive session to test your knowledge using new sample exam questions and to learn first-hand from IRC program development volunteer subject-matter experts about the IRC program. IRC holders will also share their experiences preparing for and taking the IRC certification exam.

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Activism in the Boardroom - The Inside Scoop

Room: Latour Ballroom

Activism is more prevalent than ever, but beyond the high-profile proxy fights we read about every day, what impact does activism really have inside the boardroom?  This panel will provide NIRI members with a rare opportunity to hear directly from one of the world’s most respected activists, Mason Morfit of ValueAct, who will offer his perspective on how activism impacts Board deliberations – both when an activist is agitating on the outside, and when an activist is on the inside as a director.  In addition, two seasoned corporate executives who now serve as public company directors will share their experiences and insights on how Board dynamics are changed by activism.  Finally, Joele Frank – the financial PR expert whose name is synonymous with activism defense –  will offer her always colorful views on activism, the changing role of corporate directors, and how the tactics and impact of “ankle biter” activists differ from those of activists who have “made their bones.”

4:10 PM - 5:10 PM
Wednesday, June 13, 2018
Raising Coin: Cryptocurrency as an Alternative to Traditional Capital

Room: Margaux 2

Raising coin has the potential to be bigger than equity, as recent headlines will attest. But is cryptocurrency a legitimate capital-raising vehicle? Will Initial Coin Offerings outpace IPOs? In this lively point-counterpoint session, experts will debate: Is crypto all hype or is it going to change the world?

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
The Evolution of Investing: Staying Active in an Increasingly Passive Investing World

Room: Margaux 1

As more money flows into index funds and ETFs, the role of investor relations professionals is evolving. How should companies engage passive investors? How do the big firms interact with and what are their expectations from the company and the IR professional? Is the growth of passive investing affecting stock valuations? Does capital market structure really work in a world where passive is buying everything? As passive investing dynamics change, how will corporate activism evolve? Hear from the three largest investors in your stock on these trends and more and their impact on the IR role.

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
What’s Next in Washington? A Discussion of Key Regulatory Issues for IR Professionals

Room: Lafleur 1 & 2

NIRI’s Board Chair-Elect and several chapter advocacy ambassadors will share an update on key regulatory issues facing the IR community and discuss NIRI’s efforts to bring members’ concerns to lawmakers and regulators. 2018 is an election year, and control of Congress could change next year, so it’s especially important that public companies voice public support now for regulatory reforms that will benefit issuers, investors, and IR professionals. The panel will discuss NIRI’s work with other business organizations to prod regulators to exercise greater oversight of proxy advisory firms, adopt a short-sale disclosure rule, update the shareholder proposal rules, and require greater transparency around hedge fund activism.  

8:30 AM - 9:30 AM
A Bend in the Road - The Global Economic Perspective

Room: Latour Ballroom

Understanding what’s ahead is critical to business decision making. Join Brian Beaulieu, a senior economist who gets it right when others get it wrong, for a uniquely entertaining look at the myriad economic factors will drive the economy and impact your company. 
 

9:50 AM - 10:50 AM
Spy the Lie: Tradecraft for the IR Professional

Room: Latour Ballroom

NIRI18 will close with an informative and entertaining session designed to enhance your ability to detecting deception. In-person meetings are one of the most important aspects of investor relations, whether meeting with investors or internally with management and the board. Being able to read situations and detect deception is a skill that every IR professional can use. Susan Carnicero, a former CIA security specialist with a background in investor relations, will outline a simple, but enormously effective, deception detection model and illustrate the most reliable deceptive indicators. Susan will share examples from both her Agency experience, as well as application examples from the investment arena and business world in general. 

10:50 AM - 11:50 AM