May 17, 2018
“All participants within the corporate outreach and investor community should work together to make more information available about annual meetings, corporate governance and other issues. As ESG matters become more important in the boardroom, for example, we think retail shareholders’ interest in voting will naturally go up and voting levels will improve with better technology.”
May 9, 2018
April 24, 2018
“‘I like to say that it was a series of fortunate events. The beginning of 2008 was clearly not the best time to start a new firm but we charged ahead, free of conflicts and happy to take on assignments for either side of a campaign,” said Goldfarb, co-founder, CEO and president of Okapi Partners LLC in an interview with The Deal. “Looking back, it turns out that we were at the beginning of a big change in shareholder activism, corporate governance and overall engagement with investors.”
April 21, 2018
“What are three white men doing talking about diversity?” Bruce Goldfarb, CEO of proxy solicitor Okapi Partners, asked the crowd — also mostly comprised of white males — leaving them seemingly bewildered.
April 19, 2018
“We are in an environment now where the largest shareholders are saying, ‘We want a diverse board. We are concerned with gender diversity. We are concerned with having people of color on the board,” Goldfarb said during his panel.
April 19, 2018
At Exxon Mobil’s annual shareholder meeting last year, for instance, Vanguard and BlackRock’s votes helped pass a shareholder resolution that the oil giant would regularly report the effects of climate change on its business—a blatant defiance of management’s recommendation. “That marked a turning point,” says Bruce Goldfarb, CEO of the proxy solicitation firm Okapi Partners. “The large index investors had mostly voted with management on environmental matters up until then.”
April 2, 2018
“Investors want to see proactive engagement. This includes the adoption of policies, rather than waiting for shareholders to request – either directly to the company or through shareholder proposals – that companies adopt them.”
March 20, 2018
“I’ve long admired Okapi Partners for being instrumental in helping clients achieve their goals” said Ms. Higgins. “Okapi has been at the forefront of corporate governance and shareholder activism for the past several years, and its people have developed respect in the field for their collaborative work with both clients and their advisors. I’m honored to be joining their team.”
February 27, 2018
Goldfarb says institutional investors will typically still engage directly with both sides before making a decision. “Investors evaluate the message from both sides, review the track record of the activist and its nominees, as well as the board’s nominees, frequently consider research from proxy voting advisors and sell side analysts and ultimately support the side that the investor believes will create value for its investment in the company,” Goldfarb writes.
February 15, 2018
“Whether we are working for a public company on its annual meeting, an M&A campaign or engagement outreach, or advising an activist investor, understanding a company’s constantly changing shareholder composition is integral to the success of any voting campaign,” [Goldfarb] says.