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PR man floats guide

As the rush for stock exchange listings continues unabated, a WA public relations consultant has spotted a gap in the market.

Subiaco-based consultant and author David Michie said many companies planning an ASX listing had little prior exposure to financial PR and has written a guide to help them.

Dr Michie, who practiced PR in London for ten years before coming to Australia, says financial PR is an integral part of an ASX float.

“No two ASX-listing media campaigns are identical, but the general rules are always the same,” he said.

“People need to beware of those who mystify the process with furrowed brows and talk of arcane strategies.

“Financial PR is not rocket science – it’s about getting the simple things right.”

Dr Michie, who has been involved in several recent WA listings, identifies seven key areas where PR can support a company preparing to float.

These include prospectus copywriting, design and production, managing the media relations process, preparing roadshows and presentation material, shareholder communications such as annual reports and newsletters, analyst broker audits and media training and web site development.

“Because Australia’s investor population is so heavily skewed towards the eastern States, coverage in Sydney and Melbourne newspapers during the pre-subscription phase is of critical importance,” Dr Michie said.

“Within WA, the dominance of The West Australian makes it an essential target.

“While getting onto the ASX is often seen as the end objective of the listing process, in reality it is only the start of a company’s new public life.

“Post-listing, you need to have an effective investor relations program in place,” he said.

The guide includes suggestions for developing such a program, including ways in which companies can engender share price support from brokers and shareholders.

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