STEVE MABB | Chair of Australian Shareholders' Association
STEVE MABB | Chair of Australian Shareholders' Association
What’s an AGM? A proxy? What powers do small retail shareholders wield to influence the board decisions of mighty companies on the ASX? Steve Mabb is the Chair of Australian Shareholders' Association the voice of retail shareholders.
The Association presents a ride range of topics and education to members with meetings all around the country. Members can come along and chat with each other and hear from a range of different experts and fund managers and economists on all things share market and investing. There's a monthly magazine, regular webinars, and an annual investor conference. It's a great event for two days where people come along and hear from CEOs, company chairs, fund managers and investment product providers, to learn the latest and greatest that's happening in the industry. There's lots of good independent content on the website as well.
ASA is pleased to offer listeners of this podcast 12 months complementary membership by using the coupon code "shares22" when you signup at Australian Shareholders' Association. Offer is valid till the end of June 2022
The second second role of the ASA is advocacy. There's a team of volunteers across the country called company monitors that cover most of the top 200 companies on the ASX. Monitors will meet with the companies at least once a year, normally after their annual reports come out, and they'll work through the resolutions or the issues that they're putting to their shareholders to vote on at upcoming AGMs.
Monitors will meet with the board and the management team to try and clarify issues. They put together voting intentions or the way that ASA thinks retail or regular shareholders should vote on the various resolutions that those companies are putting to their shareholders.
"Any shareholder can allocate their proxies to ASA. And we'd encourage you to do that if you're not voting, there's nothing really in it for us. We don't get any financial benefits. It's really just that we're trying to look after and support all retail shareholders and the more votes we get, the more clout or importance we have with the company. So on that note, typically with most of the companies, ASA is somewhere in the top 20 shareholders, roughly when, when you pull all those votes or proxies together. So a lot of the time, that's not enough to move the needle on a particular issue one way or the other, but sometimes when the votes are close our share of the voting can be enough to move the vote one way or another."
Steven Mabb GAICD, Chair of Australian Shareholders' Association
Steven was appointed to the board on 16 June 2020 and is a member of the Education Committee, the Remuneration & Nominations Committee and the Finance, Audit & Risk Committee. A successful entrepreneur, in 2007 he helped develop and launch the Vionic footwear brand with his business partners in the U.S., which went on to become a top 20 brand and was subsequently sold to a large U.S. listed company in 2018. He then returned to Queensland with his young family to become a full time, committed investor and quickly joined the ASA after discovering the many benefits it could offer.
Since joining ASA he has given many member presentations, contributed to EQUITY and ASA podcasts and is an active member of the Queensland company monitoring team. He brings a range of skills to the board including strategic planning and ways to develop culture. He is also a confident spokesperson on the benefits ASA can provide to potential members and is passionate about progressing the quality of education and advocacy support ASA will provide members going forward. He has been the most recent Queensland State Chair and is now handing over the role, in order to focus on Chairing the ASA Board moving forward.
He is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and has also completed further educational courses at AICD including The Role of the Chair and Governance for NonProfit Directors.
TRANSCRIPT FOLLOWS AFTER THIS BRIEF MESSAGE
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G’day and welcome back to Shares for Beginners, I’m Phil Muscatello. What’s an AGM? A proxy? What powers do small retail shareholders wield to influence the board decisions of mighty companies on the ASX. Some would say not a lot. To talk about this and many other things I’m pleased to welcome Steve Mabb back to the podcast, Hey Steve…
Steve Mabb (22s):
G'day Phil Hey, thanks so much for having me back.
It's always good to talk to you, especially from the, the celebrated head and chair of the Australian shareholders association.
Steve Mabb (33s):
Well, I don't, I don't know about celebrated, but yeah, since we last spoke, I have have taken on the chair role of the board of the ASA. So yeah, very big honor and, and lots of work to do and lots to think about. And, you know, we we've been around for nearly 60 years, so big shoes to fill, of course, take a guy over from our retiring chair. I'm happy to say we've got a great board and a great management team. So I'm pretty excited about the next few years for ASA and yeah. Looking forward to having, having a chat today about all the things that ASA is doing to, to look after those folks investing in shares in Australia.
Phil (1m 10s):
Yeah. So we won't go through your history again because you have been on the podcast a couple of times, but I'll put a link in the episode notes so that listeners, if they want to find out more about your past, your glorious past, and
Steve Mabb (1m 22s):
It's not, not that exciting, so happy to skip that today.
Phil (1m 26s):
So you took the Chair, the role of Chair at the beginning of this year, beginning of 2022. Is that correct?
Steve Mabb (1m 31s):
Yeah. In March. So yeah, I've been on the board for a couple of years, you know, prior to that was, you know, involved in Queensland with the committee up in Queensland and, and then yeah. Officially became the chair in March of this year. So, so yeah, it's a it's, as I said, it's a great honor and you know, we've got a great mission or purpose at ASA, so I'll, you know, be doing my utmost to make sure we keep delivering the value in the services that all of our members want and, and try and keep making a difference to, to the outcomes that shareholders get.
Phil (2m 3s):
So tell us a little bit about the work of the ASA.
Steve Mabb (2m 7s):
Yeah. So as I mentioned, the group's been around for about 60 years we're mostly volunteers across the country, do a lot of the work. We have a small paid management team in Sydney that kind of keep us running day to day, but really the mission is all about two things, you know, the first one's education. And we do that in lots of different ways. There's there's member meetings all around the country, as you know, Phil, where, you know, members can come along and talk to other members and hear from a range of different experts and fund managers and economists and all that kind of stuff on all things share market and investing. So that's a great way we educate people. We also have a monthly magazine that has lots of great information in it.
Steve Mabb (2m 47s):
We have an annual investor conference that's actually on in may this year. And, and that's a great event for two days where again, people come along and hear from lots of experts and, and learn the latest and greatest that's happening in the industry. So there's lots of, you know, lots of good content on the website as well. So lots of different ways we help educate and try and do it in a very independent way as well. We'll, we'll have folks from various companies or, you know, fund managers or ETF providers, whatever it might be, come and speak. So are, they've always got, you know, probably somewhat of a bias to their product or their specialty, but ASA doesn't take any, you know, kind of, or it doesn't have any influence or any vested interest in any of those, those folks.
Steve Mabb (3m 30s):
So, so we try and present a ride range of topics to our members and, and make sure that they're getting a really broad array of information from the folks that we put in front of them. So that's one big way that we try and help shareholders. The second way is what we call advocacy. And, and that's basically where, again, we have a team of volunteers across the country that we call company monitors and they cover roughly the top 200 companies on the ASX at the moment. We'd love to do more, but we just don't have enough people. So, so we cover the top 200 companies and those monitors will go out and meet with the companies at least once a year, normally after their annual reports come out and they'll, they'll work through the various things that are in the annual report and then the resolutions or the issues that they're putting to their shareholders to vote on at the upcoming AGM for that company.
Steve Mabb (4m 26s):
So our monitors we'll dig into all of that, ask, you know, questions of the board and the management team that they'll meet with try and clarify anything. That's not, not clear, give them our feedback. And then from there put together what we call voting intentions or the way that we think retail or regular shareholders should vote on the various resolutions that those companies are putting to their shareholders to, to vote on. So yeah, lots, lots more detail there that I'm sure we'll talk about and unpack, but they're the two big ways that, you know, being part of ASA can, can hopefully help you on your investing journey.
Phil (5m 0s):
So for me, that was the great entrance for the association is going to a member meeting and people can just turn up. If you don't have to be a member to come along to a member meeting, you can just come and see what it's like and see if you're going to get anything out of it. But I think it's, it's a great way for learning some from some very seasoned investors.
Steve Mabb (5m 23s):
Yeah, that's right, Phil. I mean, there's a lot of member groups around the country. All the capital cities have have meetings and lots of the bigger regional centers do as well. We also run a few zoom member meetings across the country that people can join online. And, and as you say, there's a lot of very smart, experienced, knowledgeable investors in lots of those groups. So that's one of the big values, again, of being part of the ASA. You can learn from other investors, but again, don't have any vested interest. They're just going to share with you their experiences and their knowledge and their wisdom. And in most of those member meetings, there's hundreds and hundreds of years collectively have investing in the market. So particularly when you're getting started or you don't have a really buttoned down plan yourself yet, that's a great way to kind of learn and hopefully avoid some of the mistakes that you otherwise might make along the way.
Steve Mabb (6m 11s):
We're all gonna make mistakes. I mean, we all do it. Even the best investors in the world make lots of mistakes, but, you know, it's nice to try and avoid some of the really easy or obvious mistakes by, you know, tapping into that knowledge and wisdom that's in the member meetings
Phil (6m 23s):
And then many people, and many of the members that come along to these meetings are very generous in how they share that information. And we'll sit down and have a chat with you and talk to you, tell them about how they've been investing and, you know, from 10 minutes of conversation, you can learn so much.
Steve Mabb (6m 38s):
Yeah, absolutely. That's right. I've learned lots of things from, you know, from other members. And, and often, you know, there is a lot of talk at times about individual stocks. The members do love to talk individual companies and whether they think they're buys and sells and that kind of thing. So whenever those are companies that you're interested in, or you might own, or you might be thinking about buying a lot of the time, you might hear the, the inversion or the opposite reason or the opposite case than what you're thinking, and that can help either improve or change your thinking at times, because there might be things you hadn't considered that one of those otherwise, or experienced investors, thoughts, you know, sometimes not, sometimes you still believe your position or your ideas, right.
Steve Mabb (7m 18s):
And that's fine too. That's not a debate or a, or a fight between members or anything like that. It's more just, you know, I think most of the time I'm pretty honest and a helpful exchange of ideas, and you can often get other parts of the story or other parts of the argument for companies or ETFs or funds or whatever it is that you might be thinking of investing in.
Phil (7m 37s):
And that's so important for investors, isn't it? Because we know that fund managers and ETF providers and people who work in the finance industry, they've got large teams who are arguing with each other the whole time. They're, they're always, you know, there's, someone's going to take a position on one particular company and someone else will take a completely opposite one. But as individual investors, it's often a lonely sport. And just to be able to have a bit of feedback and talk to people is very good for your investing knowledge.
Steve Mabb (8m 5s):
That's right. I mean, one of my personal investing philosophies, fillers to try and learn from the best. So I spend a lot of time reading, you know, books and newsletters and annual annual reports from some of those best investors that have got great long-term track records like Charlie manga, for example. And one of the famous quotes of Charlie Munger is invert, always invert. And what he means there is you can have your idea, or you can have your, you know, your kind of plan or your, your base case for why you might want to invest in something, but also try and invert it, try and look at the other side of the argument, you know, what could go wrong. And one of the examples he gave was he was talking about India, the country, India at one point, and he was saying, you know, how does, how do we help India progress?
Steve Mabb (8m 53s):
Or how do we help India grow and improve? Well, what could we do that could hurt India? You know, what, what could the government, or, you know, people do that would make things worse in India? That's the inversion story. Let's not do that. You know, so that's, that's something that I learned from Charlie Munger and, and I'm always happy to hear the, the opposite case or the inversion case, if you like, for things that I might be investing in from other members at discussion groups, because it helps you, you know, either cement or potentially change your mind.
Phil (9m 22s):
Okay. Well, let's have a look at the advocacy work of the association. What's for beginners who don't know about this often they will get a letter in the mail or an email saying that there's an annual general meeting coming up. What's that all about? And what's the ISO's involvement.
Steve Mabb (9m 40s):
Yeah. So in an annual general meeting, it's something that companies are required to do once a year. And they have to go to that meeting and put up to their shareholders, various different resolutions or items or issues that they want their shareholders or need their shareholders to vote on. So it's the one chance a year where all shareholders get, get to have their say formally with the board and the management team and the things that are in there each year, normally the remuneration report. So you're asked to vote on that, how they're incentivizing and rewarding their, their management teams and their boards, director elections. So the shareholders get to vote on the directors being elected or reelected to the board.
Steve Mabb (10m 25s):
Things like capital raisings at times, and then, you know, various other at times, you know, more minor or procedural type issues. So, so these are, these are things that you get a chance to have a say on every year as a shareholder, if you're so inclined. And we really encourage our members to vote in, in one of a couple of different ways. So if you have the interest, the time, the desire to go and read annual reports, read the notice of meeting and the things that they're asking you to vote on, figure out what you think is in your best interest and go and vote. That's fantastic. And you can vote online. You can go in person to the meeting, but ultimately as long as you're having your say, we think that's a, you know, that's a good idea.
Steve Mabb (11m 10s):
A lot of people, they don't want to do that. A lot of people get those, you know, voting forms in the mail, or they get an email from the registry saying, you know, this meeting's coming up. How do you want to vote? And a lot of people just delete the email or throw the letter away, which is, which is fine. And, you know, I used to do that back in the day as well, but we think a better option there is if you're not going to vote, you can allocate your votes or your proxies as they're called to the Australian shareholders association to vote on your behalf. So if, if you're not inclined to do it, but you think, Hey, I'd like the association to go and represent me as a retail shareholder. That's a great way to do it. We don't know who you are. We don't know how many shares you are in any of that kind of stuff.
Steve Mabb (11m 51s):
Basically the registry like, or link or whoever it is, will just tell us on the day of the IgM that you've got this many votes in total to vote, and then we'll go and vote them based on what we think is the best way and the right way for retail shareholders to vote on that particular issue.
Phil (12m 14s):
And the association has many volunteers who monitor companies that will be known as company monitors. And so they're the ones doing the work on your behalf or on small retail investors behalf to actually go through these reports and consider what the voting intentions should be recommended.
Steve Mabb (12m 34s):
That's right. Yeah. So the company monitors will generally go and meet with ideally the chair of the board, probably the head of the remuneration committee from the board and potentially a few other members of management or the board, and they'll work through the annual report and the issues that they're putting to their shareholders to vote on for the year in advance of the AGM. So it's a chance to have a two-way discussion, make sure we're really clear on what it is that they're doing and why they're doing it and give them our feedback as well, if there's any, you know, potential improvements or problems that we see. And then from there that monitor will go and write up. What's called our voting intention. So that's basically a report of a few pages that details the way that we intend to vote and why on each of those issues.
Steve Mabb (13m 21s):
So if you're a member of ASA, you can jump on the website, read those voting intentions and make sure you're happy with them. If you were interested, or you can just, you know, assume that ISA is voting based on what is in the best interests of most smaller retail shareholders without having to do any reading at all. What you do have to do is write in Australian shareholders association as your proxy on that form. So when you get the voting form, you do have to do that for each and every AGM that's coming up. Or if you want to make it even easier, you can actually complete a form for all the companies you own with each registry. So each of the different registries, you, you fill out the form for the companies that you own with that registry and say, you want to allocate your standing proxy or your, your proxy on an ongoing basis to the shareholders association.
Steve Mabb (14m 10s):
And then you don't even need to worry about it anymore for each and every meeting, unless you buy or sell a company. If you do buy or sell one, then you have to change that with the registry. But that's a really easy way to do it. Now with both of those things, you can change them any time. So if you do allocate your proxies to ISA, and then you decide you want to vote differently, or you don't want us to vote for you this year, you just have to notify the company or the registry that you've changed your mind, and you want to vote yourself, or you want the chair of the board to vote, or however you want to do it. So it's not a permanent thing. You can change it right up until the AGM, but we find most of the time members that don't do all that work or want to do all that work themselves to vote. We'll allocate their proxies to the ASA. And you know, at least then they're their votes heard each and every year.
Phil (14m 54s):
And you don't even have to be a member to allocate your proxies to ASA. Do you?
Steve Mabb (14m 59s):
No, that's right. Any, any shareholder can allocate their proxies to RSA. And we'd, we'd encourage you to do that. If you're not voting, there's nothing really in it for us. We don't get any financial benefits out of this or anything like that. It's really just that we're trying to look after and support all retail shareholders and the more votes we get, the more clout or importance we have with the company. So, so on that note, typically with most of the companies ASA somewhere in the top 20 shareholders, roughly when, when you pull all those votes or proxies together. So a lot of the time, that's not enough to move the needle on a particular issue one way or the other, but sometimes when the votes are close, our, our share of the, the voting can be enough to move the vote one way or another.
Steve Mabb (15m 45s):
When it's a really close spark things like director elections, or particularly the remuneration report, sometimes the ASA vote one way or the other might be enough to swing it. So, so yeah, no nothing financial to gain from the ASA for, from getting your proxy or anything like that. It's really just a way of us representing all retail shareholders and trying to help all retail shareholders as best we can through the efforts of all those volunteer monitors across the country that are doing that work each and every year with, again, roughly the top 200 companies on the ASX.
Phil (16m 15s):
And, and why would you waste your first anyway? Why, why throw it away? And then you do have a little bit of safe, however, small that can be
Steve Mabb (16m 22s):
Exactly. Yeah. I mean, if you don't vote or you don't allocate your proxies, normally what happens is your vote just goes to the chair of the meeting. And the chair of the meeting is, you know, normally, always going to vote the way that they want it to go. They're not going to think about you as an individual shareholder. They're going to vote based on what they want to see happen from a board or a management perspective. And a lot of the time those things are aligned. I mean, most of the time we do vote with the company, but there's other times where let's say the incentives that are being paid to the management team at right fair, reasonable, in our opinion for the year, the chair will want that to go through, but, and the board will want that to go through. But as individual shareholders, that's our chance to voice our displeasure or a disapproval with the way that management might have been incentivized for their performance for that, that past year and the year coming up.
Steve Mabb (17m 9s):
So it isn't a case of always voting the same way as the board has matches. That happens a lot. There's certainly plenty of issues in particularly on things like the remuneration structure that, that we might vote a different way because we don't think shareholders are being given a fair go. The other one is directors. And a lot of the time individual directors might be overworked or they might not, you know, be suitable. We think for that particular
Phil (17m 36s):
Board or for they've been there too long.
Steve Mabb (17m 39s):
Exactly. They're not independent anymore. So sometimes we may not vote or quite often we may not vote for a specific director being elected or reelected to the board. And why that's important we think is because really the independent directors, particularly on the board are supposed to be there, or one of their core roles is to represent their small shareholders. It's not to look after management or to look after the, the non-independent directors on the board. Really the, the independent directors are supposed to look after us. That's one of their core roles. So if they're not looking after us as regular or small or retail shareholders, that's a time where we obviously normally wouldn't support their election or re-election for example.
Steve Mabb (18m 23s):
So there's some, some examples of the issues where really you do want to have your, your voice heard.
Phil (18m 29s):
So the remuneration report, that's where there's quite a lot of power and where issues can come up, because if a remuneration report is voted against, there are serious consequences, aren't they?
Steve Mabb (18m 42s):
Yeah, that's right. So the remuneration report, basically the company has to put in their annual report every year. And it really outlines the way that management's been incentivized paid, rewarded this year, and then often also going forward. And that's your chance to kind of see whether you think those are aligned or in sync with us as, as small shareholders. And at times when it's not fair or it's not reasonable, or the, you know, potentially the awards or the metrics haven't been met and the board might've used discretion to still pay bonuses. Anyway, you get the chance that year, then to vote on that report. Now it's, what's called a nonbinding report.
Steve Mabb (19m 24s):
So it means you can vote against the remuneration report. And that doesn't mean that they're going to change it that particular year. But if at least 25% of the shareholders vote against the remuneration report, what happens is the company records, what's called a strike against determined generation. And if that happens two years in a row, if the company gets a strike two consecutive years, then that can actually lead to members of the board being spilled, or basically kicked off the board. So most boards don't want that to happen, right? The directors on the board would much prefer to keep their jobs than to be spilled if they have two consecutive years of votes against their remuneration report.
Steve Mabb (20m 6s):
So it does have some bite or some teeth, and it is a great way that retail shareholders can have their say where they think the company isn't doing the right thing on remuneration. Now, normally what happens with most companies is they'll get a strike the first year and realize their shareholders. Aren't happy if they didn't already. And then they'll engage with those shareholders and talk through what it is that they didn't like that needed to be improved, that they weren't comfortable with. And most companies will then try and make those changes for the following year or at least going forward whenever they can make those changes. So it does have some practical benefits as well. It's not just about trying to get board members spilled. It's really about making sure that the company's listening to their, and when they're not happy that they're hopefully taking steps to improve or to make their remuneration structure better, clearer, easier to understand going forward
Phil (20m 57s):
And the eyes and the association takes a role in terms of educating companies. There, some companies who've been rocketed into the ASX 200 and who don't really have a good idea about what their responsibilities are to small shareholders, but the ASI has counseled them on a few occasions. Haven't they?
Steve Mabb (21m 15s):
Yeah, that's right. I mean, a lot of smaller companies that are outside the ASX 200 or 300, for example, a lot of the time they'll have founders that hold a lot of shares in the company that might hold controlling interest in the company, or they might have a handful of big investors that own most of the shares in the company when they're small and they don't have to worry as much, or they don't tend to spend as much time on good remuneration structures and good remuneration reporting. But as they grow, if they do jump into the 300 or the 200 and start playing in the big leagues, a lot of the time, they just won't have the history or the experience or the expertise to build or to, to improve their remuneration structure, to, you know, to satisfy shareholders at that level.
Steve Mabb (21m 59s):
So that's where the ASA, you know, often in that first year of monitoring a company like that, we'll be able to help them. And it's particularly around communication or just how clear and, you know, easy to understand the report is where our position is. If you read someone's remuneration report in their annual report, you should be able to understand it as a retail shareholder and be able to figure out how they're incentivizing and rewarding people. And if you can't, if it's too complex, too complicated, that's where we challenged the company to improve things like that. Or if there aren't enough measures or metrics to make it fair and, and, and balanced, for example, that's where we challenged the company to improve those kinds of things going forward. And it's not just us, there's some other, what's called proxy advisors with big institutions that, that might work on those things in parallel, but from a retail shareholder or a small shareholders perspective, we're really the peak body or the peak group that, that works on those things with companies and tries to help them as they're growing and, you know, moving into the big leagues of the ASX.
Phil (22m 60s):
And you had a conversation as a company monitor from memory, it was with AML about their responsibilities. And I think it was about remuneration as well. Can you tell us that story?
Steve Mabb (23m 11s):
Yeah. Look, there was a company based up in Queensland that I owned at the time called AML. They're an ASX 200 company and we weren't monitoring them. They're a newer entrance into the ASX 208 because I own some shares. I wanted to jump in and start monitoring them. So, so I did dig into to their annual report, met with the board, kind of worked through what they were proposing that year. And this was I think, two or three years ago now. And unfortunately the board that you chose to use discretion to pay out most of the management bonuses, even though management hadn't actually hit the metrics or the numbers that they were supposed to hit to a, to receive their bonuses.
Steve Mabb (23m 51s):
Now, this was the COVID year where, you know, lots of share prices plummeted because of the, you know, the COVID disruptions. And the board basically said, look, this wasn't management style to, you know, it wasn't, it wasn't in their control. They worked really hard and I'm paraphrasing of course, but, you know, w we want to pay them anyway. Now at that point in time, shareholders were down about 40% for that year. So if you were a shareholder in the company, you'd lost plenty of money through no fault of your own as well. And yet, you know, the board was proposing or, or did pay out management bonuses, you know, towards the top end of the range. So we voted against the report that year and, and asked the question at the AGM and the chair of the meeting basically said that, you know, not only did we use discretion this year, but we're in a competitive environment for people and, and we'll be happy to use discretion again in the future if we need to.
Steve Mabb (24m 46s):
So really what he was saying was, you know, our incentive plan, isn't really hard and fast, you know, we'll, we'll use discretion whenever we need to. That was a bit of a yellow flag for me. And in the same meeting, I think some investors had challenged them about how difficult or complex it was to understand some of their products and services. And in the same meeting, the CEO's address, the CEO basically said, you know, to those investors that are having difficulty understanding some of what we do. I just want to say, you don't really need to understand our products. You just need to determine whether you trust management, and if you trust management, then you should invest in AML. So those couple of things really didn't sit well with me.
Steve Mabb (25m 28s):
And we wrote up our AGM report accordingly. I sold my shares, and then subsequently a few months later, they are embroiled in a, you know, a big problem with an acquisition they'd made in Ireland with the Irish central bank investigating this act, this company that acquired around potential money laundering. So the share price plummeted as a result of that. And, you know, I think that was an example of where the company monitors going in and digging into things with the company and reporting back to, to retail shareholders on the good, the bad, the warts and all what they found can give you some help or some assistance that you're not necessarily gonna read just in the annual report itself or on the marketing messages that the company might be putting out.
Steve Mabb (26m 12s):
So good example of, you know, what the monitoring process of reading those reports can do for you as a, as a retail shareholder potentially. Now I'm not casting any aspersions on AML. They might be a great company. They might go on to great things from here who knows just using it as an example of, you know, some of the things that didn't sit well with us as retail shareholders, and our ability to report back to people on those particular concerns.
Phil (26m 36s):
So if people want to find out more, you've got a special offer for listeners at the moment, haven't you?
Steve Mabb (26m 41s):
We do. Yeah. So anyone listening to share, so beginners, we're going to offer you a 12 month complimentary membership, so you can try out ASA for free for the next 12 months. You can come along to the meetings, you can get access to all that information on the website, you'll get the online versions of the magazine. You can take advantage of the discounts. We offer members to come to various events, et cetera, and really, you know, try out ASA and see if you think it's helpful to you on your investing journey or not. So if you go to the website, Australian shareholders.com that I, you and you use the, the coupon code shares 22. So that's S H a R E S 22 in the coupon code section.
Steve Mabb (27m 23s):
You'll be able to try us out free for 12 months after 12 months, if you love it, great, you can sign up and be a paid member going forward, or if not, you know, no obligation to continue on. That's a, it's about, I think it's $145 value a year, so great option for all those shares to beginners listeners to try it ASA and see if we might be able to help you as well.
Phil (27m 42s):
And, and the annual fee of 104, is it a hundred forty, a hundred and forty five? I think it's 146.
Steve Mabb (27m 47s):
I think it's 145 this year.
Phil (27m 50s):
Oh, by the way. Otherwise, otherwise it's a bargain for what you get out of the organization.
Steve Mabb (27m 55s):
Yeah, I think so.
Phil (27m 58s):
I think we're good to go there. And there was one other question. Nah, that'll be fine. I think
Steve Mabb (28m 7s):
What else did you have in there? Just looking at the script. See if there's anything else on there. All right. What about the question around, do we have a good relationship with monitors? I think you might've met companies that, did you do desire say have a good relationship with companies. Second, last question.
Phil (28m 27s):
I said the relationship between monitors and companies. Yeah. Okay. Steve, just before we go, just give us a little bit of an overview about the relationship that the ISI via the monitors has with companies on the ASX.
Steve Mabb (28m 42s):
Yeah, so the most companies are really happy to engage with us. The majority of the boards do want a good relationship with their small shareholders. So most of our meetings are very respectful. It doesn't mean we always agree on everything. We can agree to disagree sometimes on particular issues, but for the most part, yeah, the vast majority of the companies do really want to engage with their retail shareholders and they are happy to sit down and, and talk to ASA and work with us, which is great. There's occasionally some companies that particularly have found a lead or, you know, executive directors that, that don't really care so much about what we'd call good governance. So sometimes those companies, you know, are dismissive or, or not particularly keen to listen to, or, or take feedback from their, their retail shareholder base.
Steve Mabb (29m 28s):
And we'll call that out in our reports. Now, if you know that going in and you don't care and you want to own the company anyway, that that's fine. You know, the ASA doesn't tell you which shares to buy and which shares not to buy. We'll just report on, you know, how that board and how that company is responding to, or treating their retail shareholders. And you can make the decision from there. So it isn't, it isn't investment advice that we're giving you there. It's really just saying, Hey, this is what the company is or isn't doing to help their, their retail shareholders and, and why. And from there, it's up to you what you want to do with that information, obviously.
Phil (30m 2s):
Fantastic, Steve Mabb. Thank you very much for joining me today.
Shares for Beginners is for information and educational purposes only. It isn’t financial advice, and you shouldn’t buy or sell any investments based on what you’ve heard here. Any opinion or commentary is the view of the speaker only not Shares for Beginners. This podcast doesn’t replace professional advice regarding your personal financial needs, circumstances or current situation