Capital IR effort in Singapore

Jan 18, 2011
<p>More highlights from the IR Magazine South East Asia Awards 2010</p>

CapitaLand fought off stiff competition from OCBC Bank, SingTel and United Overseas Bank to win the grand prix for best overall investor relations at the IR Magazine South East Asia Awards, held at Singapore Exchange on December 14, 2010.

Harold Woo, senior vice president of IR at CapitaLand and the winner of last year’s pan-Asian award for best IR professional, collected the trophy. CapitaLand’s Olivier Lim also won the gong for best chief financial officer– for the second year in a row – which was collected by Sharon Sng.  

As in previous years, SingTel was a big winner in 2010, collecting two awards. Sin Yang Fong won best IR professional and the telecoms giant picked up a gong for best investment community meetings. Singapore Airlines’ outgoing CEO Chew Choon Seng won best IR by a CEO and the prestigious pan-Asian award for the same category.

DBS had five nominations and took home one  award: best IR website/webcasting. Thrice-nominated OCBC won the award for best annual report, and five-times nominated United Overseas Bank won the award for best corporate governance.

Singapore Awards winners

Q&A with Harold Woo, senior vice president of IR, CapitaLand
How many investor meetings do you hold each year?
By November 2010 we had conducted a total of 10 international roadshows, eight domestic roadshows, three analyst briefings, 558 company visits and 32 site visits. We also hosted two special events for investors.

What has been the biggest hurdle to overcome during the past 12 months?
The real estate space in Asia is increasingly competitive. Last year we saw the listing of three large real estate companies in Singapore alone, one of which is our subsidiary, CapitaMalls Asia. Coupled with restrictive policy measures in the residential markets in which we operate, we’ve witnessed an increasingly volatile performance of our share price.

What are your plans for the coming year?
CapitaLand will continue to seek out more efficient methods of engaging our stakeholders through the adoption of new communication technologies. We will also be looking at using alternative media distribution platforms, which are more environmentally friendly.

Q&A with Sin Yang Fong, director of IR and group communications, SingTel
How many investor meetings have you held over the past 12 months?
SingTel met with approximately 720 investors in more than 280 meetings during the last financial year. Meetings with a group of investors, such as presentations during investor days, are considered
as a single meeting with multiple investors.

Why do you think investors and analysts nominated your company for these awards?
We maintain a regular and extensive marketing program with investors globally and provide generous access to management. In all our communications efforts, we tell a clear, simple and consistent message to help investors understand the strategy and performance of our operations.

This is important because SingTel has significant investments overseas in diversified markets, and each market is driven by different developments. Given the limited attention investors can devote to each stock, it is important for IR to make the meetings as efficient as possible, yet tell a compelling and comprehensive story about the company.

What were the main challenges for your investor relations program during 2010?
First of all, securing management availability for our IR marketing program. Secondly, understanding and communicating developments across the group’s diversified operations. It’s always a challenge to keep up with rapid developments in multiple telecoms markets, as well as keeping pace with changes in the technology landscape.

Q&A with Kelvin Quek, head of IR, OCBC Bank
How much time do you spend meeting with investors?
We conduct approximately 200 meetings per year with investors.

Why do you think investors and analysts nominated your company for these awards?
Clarity, consistency and timely updates in the communication of our strategy and performance to the market: we are consistent and we have a good track record of financial performance. Our management team is focused on driving financial performance and promoting shareholder-friendly capital management initiatives.

What were the main professional difficulties for you recently?
The main difficulty was satisfying the investor demand for more information and greater details of our asset portfolios as a result of concerns from the financial crisis, while ensuring that all material information was properly disseminated through the stock exchange.

In addition, there was the significant challenge of convincing institutional investors that our loan and securities portfolios remained resilient against the effects of the global recession and financial turmoil, and explaining the rationale for our acquisition of ING Asia Private Bank, as well as the valuation paid.

Q&A with Liam Wee Sin, chief operating officer, UOL
What kinds of meetings have you held with investors over the past 12 months?
We participated in three major property conferences in 2010: the Citi Asia Pacific Property Conference in April, Deutsche Bank’s Access Asia property conference in May, and UBS’ ASEAN and India Investment Conference in September. On average, we had 10 to 12 small group meetings as well as one-on-one meetings at each of these conferences.

In addition, we held about 18 one-on-one meetings at our office between January and November 2010.

What were the main challenges for your IR program during 2010 – for example, capital raising, M&A activity, corporate crisis?
Our investor relations program is still in its infancy and the immediate objective is to interact with the investor community in order to provide visibility and better understanding of UOL’s business model and investment strategies. Nomura initiated coverage of UOL in September 2010. This is in addition to coverage by DBS Vickers, OCBC Investments, Royal Bank of Scotland and CIMB.

What are your goals for IR for the coming year?
Our main aims are to enhance our IR capability for the benefit of investors and shareholders, and to widen analyst coverage.

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