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Our Work

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Implementing a Strategic IR Program

A cloud technology company that suddenly found its industry out of favor sought SMA’s guidance on strategies to make its messaging stick even when it seemed no one was paying attention to the story. Our targeted IR program helped turn up the volume, attracting long-term investors and increasing valuation.

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Sustainability for Good and Growth

A newly public automotive enthusiast brand was ready to evolve its sustainability efforts from a feel-good community give-back program to a strategic business driver. The company engaged SMA to collaborate with its team. The goal: a program incorporating the social, governance and environmental initiatives of highest importance to its stakeholders and with the greatest potential to drive business growth.

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From Private to Public

A software company preparing to go public engaged SMA to guide management through the IPO process, establish a comprehensive IR foundation, and craft a cohesive and impactful narrative. The result was a successful start to life in the public spotlight.

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Executive Speaker Coaching

A rapidly growing therapeutics company with a group of disparate businesses sought SMA’s help in communicating its story, which investors found complex and confusing. By developing a fresh narrative that focused on the investment thesis, rather than the minute aspects of the business, and training the CEO to tell the story in a compelling way, the company quickly captured the attention of investors.

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Perception Audit

When a newly public medical device manufacturer failed to generate investor interest–despite a recent FDA clearance–the company sought SMA’s counsel to identify the issues. We recommended conducting a perception study and then applying the results of the research to correct misperceptions, refresh messaging and drive investor awareness in the U.S. and Europe.

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Investor Outreach

An industrial company that could not shake its “poor performance” label, despite years of improving financials, sought SMA’s counsel to counter the Street’s misperceptions. We implemented a plan to reintroduce the company to investors, using refreshed messaging targeted at an entirely new group of investors.

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Establishing IR Success After an IPO

A newly public software company hired Sharon Merrill Advisors to implement a strategic investor relations program to generate support for its equity story and drive investor demand. In the first year following the IPO, the company outperformed its peer group in total shareholder return and earned investor respect for the quality of its communications.

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CEO Transition Communications

When the long-time, popular Chairman and CEO of an industrial manufacturer announced plans to retire, the board of directors asked SMA to develop a communications plan that would ensure a smooth transition and generate the support of the company’s long-term shareholders.

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Hybrid Investor Day Event Brings Business Model to Life

A newly public health services company needed to help investors understand its business model and the power of its proprietary technology platform. SMA planned, coordinated and executed a dynamic hybrid Investor Day that illuminated the company’s story for investors and analysts. Equally important, the equity story crafted for the event served as the cornerstone for the company’s future messaging.

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Enhancing Sustainability Disclosures

An industrial manufacturer engaged SMA to help formalize its sustainability strategy, enhance disclosures, and publish its inaugural sustainability report. Using its storytelling expertise, SMA presented a clear and compelling narrative to build a strategic foundation that elevated the company’s already-embedded ESG activities. By properly framing its sustainability story, the company gained credit with its key stakeholders and the attention of its eventual strategic acquirer.

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Presentation Training

A newly promoted CFO, who had initially dismissed the idea of an executive coaching session as “only for beginners,” sought SMA’s presentation training after he received low marks from the Street on his first quarterly earnings call. Following SMA’s coaching, the CFO was more confident on subsequent earnings calls and received high praise from investors.

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Virtual Investor Day Event with a “Hands-On” Feel

A well-capitalized transportation technology company sought to differentiate itself from underfunded and underperforming peers. SMA planned, coordinated and executed a virtual investor event—literally a driver’s seat experience of the client’s flagship product—that showcased its technology and crystallized its value proposition in a real-world context.

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Merger & Acquisition Communications

A technology company sought to complete a highly strategic acquisition, but needed to persuade investors that the benefits of the transaction warranted the unusually high deal valuation. Sharon Merrill worked with management to develop and implement a communications strategy that was favorably received by investors.

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Investor Day Executive Presentation Readiness

The leaders of a technology company sought to measurably improve their presentation skills in advance of an Investor Day intended to showcase the strength of the management team. After working with Sharon Merrill, the company scored high marks among investors and analysts for presentation quality and bench strength.

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Shareholder Activism

When an activist group challenged a company’s efforts to pursue an acquisition, the client sought SMA’s expertise to develop a shareholder outreach plan. The plan resulted in the merger receiving shareholder approval and the dissidents being defeated.

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Proxy Fight

A client faced a dissident shareholder group attempting to grab board seats at its annual meeting. The company tapped SMA to spearhead communications during the proxy contest, which became a referendum on the company’s strategic direction and growth strategy.

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Meetings and Introductions

A significantly underfollowed software company engaged SMA to attract sell-side coverage and increase buy-side visibility. Our focused targeting strategy, coupled with a well-attended Investor Day, helped to quadruple the company’s analyst coverage and double institutional ownership.

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Crisis Communications

A national consumer products company confronted with a major product recall asked SMA to develop and implement a crisis communications plan to reassure nervous investors and maintain the trust of customers and other external stakeholders.

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Communicating Earnings Shortfalls

When a software company trading near its 52-week high faced an earnings shortfall, we advised a proactive communications strategy that included a preemptive announcement, a conference call and a virtual investor roadshow. The approach and resultant messaging helped to maintain the company’s reputation with minimal impact to the stock price.

The Sharon Merrill team is a respected source of insight and counsel to Vista Outdoor’s leadership. The SMA team helps us navigate our IR program and holistic messaging needs while informing our content with research and recommendations in areas of high strategic importance such as mission, purpose, ESG, succession, activism, and investor hot button areas. Maureen and her team have helped us craft and successfully execute multiple Investor Days, perception studies and countless quarterly earnings and news events. We greatly value the expert investor relations counsel SMA provides and highly recommend their work.

Kelly ReisdorfChief Investor Relations and Communications Officer

When I think back to our first earnings call and compare it to today, it’s amazing how far we’ve come and grown up as a public company – due in large part to Sharon Merrill. Their strategic counsel, understanding of the capital markets, and tireless support at every turn helped to elevate our professionalism, effectively articulate our long-term strategy, and demonstrate our value to our stakeholders.

Craig SchueleExecutive Vice President, Marketing & Business Development, Altra Motion

The Sharon Merrill team provided outstanding support and counsel as we hosted our inaugural investor day. The team helped orchestrate many aspects of the event, from vendor coordination, message development, speaker coaching, and day-of logistics. They took the time to understand our business, strategy and management team, which helped to make our investor day successful.

Matt GillmorVice President, Investor Relations, Agilon Health

I worked with Sharon Merrill to upgrade my presentation delivery for my company’s pitch deck. With their expert coaching, I was able to deliver a more focused presentation that highlighted my key selling points, as well as demonstrated the passion that I have for my business. I highly recommend Sharon Merrill as a coach for executives with a desire to tell a compelling story in a dynamic way.

Vanitha KeraCEO Creative Systems & Consulting

Sharon Merrill Advisors has been essential to the Rigetti leadership and communications teams as we navigated transitioning from a private to a public company and beyond. SMA was instrumental in helping Rigetti go public during a particularly challenging year in the capital markets. Throughout this process, SMA worked with us and our bankers to build a database of prospects, set up investor meetings, and provide invaluable strategic counsel. SMA also helped us craft core messaging, garner coverage, secure conference speaking roles, and run sophisticated and targeted investor outreach. We received crucial support from their team in building out our quarterly earnings process, establishing our disclosure practices, and holding our inaugural investor day. I highly recommend partnering with SMA for your investor relations and capital market coaching needs.

Idalia FriedsonChief of Staff to the CEO, Rigetti Computing

The team at Sharon Merrill was a hands-on, detail-oriented and creative contributor to our public company communication strategy. They immersed themselves in our business and dedicated the time with management to ensure that they understood the nuances of our growth story and the financial and operational drivers of our company. Sharon Merrill helped us create a clear, concise and persuasive story in our investor deck and helped coordinate our first capital markets showcase. Their working knowledge of investor relations was extremely helpful. I highly recommend the team at Sharon Merrill.

John BelniakManaging Director, Garage + Social, Hagerty

As a newly public company, Sharon Merrill Advisors helped us translate our existing Impact initiatives and our new ESG focus areas into a compelling, strategic communications framework for the investor audience as well as the general public. We continue to rely on their guidance regarding best practices in the ESG communications space and the evolution of our own Impact narrative over time. The SMA team is always available to offer trusted advice and I am so thankful for their partnership.

Kory FelkerHead of Sustainability, Hagerty