NEW YORK, N.Y.—March 3, 2021—Mediant, a leading provider of investor communications technology and technology-enabled solutions to banks, brokers, corporations, and funds, has developed an application programming interface (API) simplifying access to, and voting in, virtual annual meetings.
The API establishes a digital legal proxy that replicates a traditional legal proxy, making it easier for beneficial shareholders to securely participate in virtual annual meetings—and brings the investor communications industry closer to offering a seamless, meaningful experience for all virtual meeting participants.
The COVID-19 pandemic forced many corporations to adopt a virtual format for their annual shareholder meetings during the 2020 proxy season. While these accommodations were designed to allow shareholders to participate in annual meetings, the digital format presented a new set of challenges related to shareholder access and voting.
The urgency of resolving these challenges led a 40-member End-to-End Vote Confirmation Working Group comprised of proxy service providers, transfer agents, and financial services firms to tackle the issue. The working group’s objective is to create a digital best practice solution that closely replicates an in-person meeting. The digital legal proxy created by Mediant’s API replaces a traditional legal proxy required for beneficial access and voting in an in-person meeting—and does so without the need for multiple technology solutions.
“Ensuring the rights of all participants, and especially shareholders, to attend virtual annual meetings—and make their voices heard by casting their votes on corporate issues—is essential for a successful meeting,” said Sherry Moreland, President and Chief Operating Officer of Mediant. “We are proud to be able to harness our expertise in financial services and technology to develop a solution for strengthening virtual shareholder engagement during—and after—this period of unprecedented disruption.”
Mediant’s API, successfully tested among industry working group members such as Computershare and EQ, facilitates the exchange of shareholder information between virtual meeting providers and proxy services providers—and enables shareholders to vote on the respective virtual meeting provider’s platform, without being re-routed to another system. The working group expressed support for Mediant’s API, and the solution’s approach to simplifying shareholder participation in virtual meetings through the digital legal proxy.
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