Investor relations officers’ competitive information gathering typically starts with comparative valuation data and stock performance, as well as commentary on industry, product and market trends and performance. Because IROs are situated in a daily environment where information of all types can flow broadly and rapidly across multiple channels, they have the opportunity to make unique contributions to competitive-intelligence gathering within the organization.
IR sits very much in the flow of strategically important information, ranging from financial performance and competitive positioning of peers to industry trends and the value investors are willing to place on different management strategies and actions. Sometimes, this information is available nowhere else.
Tools like DisclosureNet offer detailed insights into the comparative AND competitive new, financial filings and sector drivers.
While this intelligence-gathering role has been carried out informally by IROs in the past, the responsibility is increasingly becoming a formal part of the IRO’s job description. A recent survey of IROs found this aspect of the role has grown to be a recognized part of the IR team’s mandate, with 95 percent of IROs reporting that they regularly gather information on their company’s market competitors.
Nearly two thirds of IROs report that their intelligence-gathering effort feeds senior management’s strategic discussions and decision-making, while 61 percent say it informs IR strategy and 22 percent report regularly providing competitive intelligence to board members.
Call it competitive intelligence, market intelligence, media monitoring or something else, a successful intelligence gathering function shares a few common characteristics that translate into effectiveness, efficiency and strategic importance.
This white paper explores the evolving role of IR in competitive intelligence and how industry thought leaders across North America are taking it on as part of the IR mandate.