2015 volume 25 issue 1

CIRI Chapter Updates

CIRI Ontario Chapter Update

CIRI Ontario kicked off the new year with a successful Mentorship Breakfast with Dennis Westfall, Vice President, Investor Relations at Intact Financial Corporation. The session was well attended by junior and senior IROs, communications professionals and students. We’d like to thank the corporate access team at TD Bank Group for sponsoring this event.

In January, we hosted An Economist’s View of the Year Ahead – a luncheon with Derek Burleton, Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist at TD Bank Group. Dennis offered his insight on hot topics including oil prices, interest rates, and Canada’s housing market.

CIRI Alberta Chapter Update

CIRI Alberta launched our 2015 programming with a View from the C-Suite seminar held on January 14. The event was one of our best-attended lunch hour programs in our Chapter’s history.  More than 50 people joined Brian Ferguson, President and CEO of Cenovus Energy and Alison Trollope, Chair of CIRI Alberta, for a fireside chat. Brian provided a number of important insights during the 45-minute interactive session, such as the importance of continuing to communicate during challenging economic times, and how IR can provide the most value to CEOs by being a “trusted adviser”.

On March 12, CIRI Alberta will offer a panel discussion of What the Street Wants; How to Create Compelling and Clear Messages. The panel will be moderated by David Mann, NATIONAL Public Relations (previously with Talisman Energy), as well as members from the sell-side in Calgary.  March 24 will bring back our popular Brains over Beers networking event – be sure to reserve your spot early, as space is limited.

Do you have fresh ideas and energy that you’d like to bring to CIRI Alberta’s mission to ensure a vibrant and relevant association serving the needs of its members? CIRI Alberta is seeking candidates for the Chapter's 2015-2016 Board of Directors. If you are interested – or know another CIRI Alberta member who would be a great fit – we invite you to submit a nomination. To do this, write a short paragraph that includes:
  • Nominee's skills and experience
  • Nominee's involvement in CIRI
  • How the nominee expects to make a contribution.
Nominations should be submitted to Anne Plasterer (aplasterer@newalta.com) or Alison Trollope (alison.trollope@asc.ca) by Friday, March 6.

CIRI Alberta will hold our annual general meeting on April 16 at 4PM, in conjunction with a Senior IRO Roundtable and networking event. Put this can’t-miss event in your calendar today, and stay tuned for more details!

CIRI BC Chapter Update

A powerhouse panel discussed the issue of Corporate Social Responsibility & IR and the trends in corporate reporting. Panelists agreed that while European companies are cutting edge with respect to sustainability reporting, it is becoming increasingly mainstream for Canadian companies. Susan Todd, Principal of Solstice Sustainability Works Inc., described a positive trend for what she called, “warts and all” disclosure. Her colourful comments indicate a commitment and increasing comfort level with respect to disclosing all aspects of the business, both positive and negative.

Monica Moretto, Manager of Corporate Affairs and Social Responsibility at Pan American Silver Corp. offered this advice to IROs: Spend time shadowing the CSR professional within your organization so you can understand both the work that is being done and the impact that it has. This will enable you to speak with authority about not just the internal CSR strategy but also the groundwork and resulting effect.

One of the most relevant points for our audience came from Henry Stoch, Partner in the enterprise risk practice at Deloitte. He pointed out that all companies need to start the process internally by asking why and understanding the corporate strategy for CSR and sustainability. Once an internal perspective is defined, which could take a year or more, the company can evaluate the demand for and desire to pursue reporting.

The panelists strongly agreed that the strategy and eventual reporting document must come from within the company. Once reporting becomes a priority, find the right framework and fully understand both the process and the information requirements. 

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