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Corporate & Securities Law

: Blog

Target's Annual Meeting Campaign: "Bringing It" Online

By broc


Target's Annual Meeting Campaign: "Bringing It" Online

Some interesting news comes courtesy of Target, whose annual meeting is being held today. This will be no "regular" annual meeting as William Ackman, whose Pershing Square Capital Management owns a 7.8% stake, is seeking a seat for himself and four other nominees on Target's board (as noted in this article) as well is seeking the company to use a "universal ballot" (as noted in The Corporate Library blog).

Although it's become fairly common for dissidents in the throes of a proxy fight to leverage the Web (see this list of examples I have collected), it's still fairly rare for companies to do the same. That's why it's worth noting Target's annual meeting page to point out how they "get it" when it comes to campaigning online in their defense.

A number of the items posted on the company's annual meeting home page were recommended in my article from the Spring '08 issue entitled "The Coming Online IR Campaigns: The Future of Director Elections" (which is still available for free). To begin with, Target bothered to create an annual meeting home page. That's a critical first step. They highlight endorsements from proxy advisors. They even post a white paper making their argument why they think one proxy advisor's report is flawed (as noted in this article).

Have a good look. I predict these types of shareholder meeting sites will become more of the norm for IR departments/corporate secretaries when we live in a proxy access world without broker non-votes (ie. next year)...

You want further proof that the Web is changing the job of a corporate secretary? How about when a shareholder proponent posts a transcript of his remarks from the annual meeting? Governance guru Bob Monks did just that yesterday on his blog, right after he presented five proposals at Exxon-Mobil's annual meeting.

Deal Protection: The Latest Developments in an Economic Tsunami

We have posted the transcript from our recent webcast: "Deal Protection: The Latest Developments in an Economic Tsunami."

Full post as published by Blog on May 28, 2009 (boomark / email).

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