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The online world is changing how we receive information and interact with others. We all know it and see it regularly – receiving and sending paper physically to another person or organisation is a much smaller part of our daily lives. 

With these online changes in mind and to try to understand where shareholders are on this “journey to digital”, Link Asset Services, in conjunction with the Share Society, launched a survey of the Share Society membership in 2017. The objective was to seek to understand how retail shareholders perceive the removal of paper and the increase in the digital delivery of the shareholder touchpoints around General Meeting voting, access to the General Meeting, delivery of dividends and what will likely be the digitisation of the corporate actions world. 

Key points:

  • In general, there are positive inclinations amongst shareholders to embrace digital developments, with 94% of respondents supporting online proxy voting alongside other voting delivery channels, and 70% receptive to the idea of attending a “virtual” AGM
  • There was lower support for digital-only delivery channels, with less than half (46%) of respondents in favour of electronic communications being the default method for all new shareholders
  • Chequeless dividend payments continue to grow in popularity, with 100% of under 30s supporting electronic delivery instead of physical cheques.

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