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Westwicke Blog

The Westwicke Blog is designed to deliver information and insights into the ever-changing world of investor relations and the capital markets, with a specific focus on the healthcare industry.

Why Your Corporate Bench Strength Matters to Investors

Posted on February 16th, 2017. Posted by

Why Bench Strength in Your C-Suite Matters to Investors

The CEO and CFO are the public faces of any company. After all, they are primarily responsible for delivering the organization’s message during earnings calls and investor presentations and interacting with investors during road shows.

However, no great company is comprised solely of just two C-level execs, regardless of how talented they are. The importance of maintaining a solid management team below the CEO and CFO — quality operating officers and division heads, for example — cannot be overstated.

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Scared of Hedge Funds? Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Be

Posted on February 8th, 2017. Posted by

Scared of Hedge Funds? Here’s Why You Shouldn’t Be

Sometimes, corporate leaders tell us that they are reluctant to meet with hedge funds. Such apprehension is fueled in many cases by concern that hedge funds may be looking into their company for the sole purpose of shorting their stock.

While we understand a preference to meet with long-only funds, we recommend that companies maintain a consistent dialogue with hedge funds.

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Four Tips for Managing Your Quarterly Quiet Period

Posted on February 1st, 2017. Posted by

Four Tips for Managing Your Quarterly Quiet Period

We’re often asked for advice on managing quarterly quiet periods successfully, so that management can focus on tying up financials and developing good messaging for the earnings call and press release.

A well-thought out and consistently applied quiet period can provide a much-needed respite from investor communications for management around busy quarter ends. But one reason for confusion about them is that, unlike quiet periods following an IPO, which are closely regulated by the SEC, end-of-quarter quiet periods are more loosely defined and not strictly regulated.

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What We Learned at J.P. Morgan 2017

Posted on January 25th, 2017. Posted by

What We Learned at J.P. Morgan 2017

Another J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference has come and gone, and this year’s event was perhaps the most hectic yet. Despite the busy schedule, the Westwicke Partners team returned energized by what we heard in San Francisco.

After dozens of meetings with a lot of great companies, two things in particular became clear to me. One is that healthcare stocks seem poised for a better 2017 than they had in 2016. Another is a potential increase in M&A activity. In fact, we woke up on the first day of the conference to the news of United Healthcare acquiring Surgical Care Affiliates. Who knows if this theme will continue through the rest of the year, but many of the quality companies we had the opportunity to chat with this week could be attractive targets to both strategic investors and the sponsor community.

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Five Tips for Raising Capital Pre-IPO or Acquisition

Posted on January 18th, 2017. Posted by

Five Tips for Raising Capital Pre-IPO or Acquisition

Development-stage healthcare companies typically need to raise money every one to two years. As they grow, they typically attract larger and more varied forms of financing until the time comes for them to either be acquired or go public. Many companies will opt to run a dual-track strategy at such a time to maximize the value that has been created.

But what if the market isn’t quite ready for your IPO, as we saw throughout most of 2016? How can you keep your development engine running while waiting for the right market conditions to make your debut as a public company?

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What Public Company CEOs, CFOs Need to Know About After-Hours Trading

Posted on January 4th, 2017. Posted by

What Public Company CEOs, CFOs Need to Know About After-Hours Trading

As much as CEOs and CFOs know that they should focus on the long-term performance of their stocks, it’s impossible not to at least notice and wonder about day-to-day, hour-to-hour fluctuations, especially when they seem arbitrary and divorced from fundamentals.

Trading before the market opens and after it closes can be particularly confusing. For instance, outside of the regular market session, spreads can widen dramatically (see chart).

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Tips for Building a Better Investor Relations Plan

Posted on December 20th, 2016. Posted by

Tips for Building a Better Investor Relations Plan

Failing to plan, the old saying goes, is planning to fail. This is certainly true when it comes to your investor relations strategy. Yet even though strategic planning is every bit as important to your IR success as it is for every other part of your business, we find that many companies fail to plan correctly, if they plan at all.

IR planning is about delivering the right story to a well-defined audience, and about refreshing your message in a way that will continue to resonate with investors. Every good annual plan starts with the same question: What do you want to be different at the end of the year? So it’s vital to articulate your goals before formulating a strategy.

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Our Most Well-Read Investor Relations Posts of 2016

Posted on December 14th, 2016. Posted by

Our Most Well-Read Investor Relations Posts of 2016

After several years of extraordinary performance, healthcare stocks endured a challenging year in 2016. The Nasdaq Health Care and Biotechnology Indices were down almost 14 percent and more than 18 percent, respectively, year to date, through Dec. 12.

Whether you’re a leader of a public healthcare company, or a private company with plans for an IPO, carefully planned and flawlessly executed investor relations strategies are more important than ever during periods of increased scrutiny from Wall Street.

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Seven Tips to Help Ensure Successful Biotech Earnings Calls

Posted on December 7th, 2016. Posted by

Seven Tips to Help Ensure Successful Biotech Earnings Calls

Good CEOs and CFOs know that they only get a limited number of interactions with their buy-side and sell-side analysts each year. Analysts are busy people, with perhaps dozens of listed companies under coverage or on their watch lists. An earnings call is thus one of the few times that companies can have the undivided attention of their covering analysts and interested buy-siders. Use that time wisely. Here are some pointers to consider before you host your next biotech earnings call.

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Life for a Life Sciences Investor Relations Officer: Double Duty

Posted on November 15th, 2016. Posted by

Life for a Life Sciences Investor Relations Officer: Double Duty

Investor relations professionals have a tough job – but the life sciences industry presents some unique challenges: a strict regulatory environment, the politics surrounding healthcare reform, long product development timelines, and large investments in research and development. Implementing an IR program against that backdrop is daunting.

Yet that’s not all. The job of an IR officer in a life sciences company is uniquely complex, multifaceted, and demanding.

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