In June of this year, the United States Proxy Exchange (USPX) was contacted by shareowners who had heard rumors Symantec Corporation would not hold a regular annual meeting in 2010. The company planned to offer instead some sort of Internet download or “virtual” shareowner meeting. For over a year, the USPX has spearheaded shareowners’ response to such virtual meetings.
Symantec’s share price has been in a steady decline since 2004. The company’s executives are excessively compensated. The decision to hold a “virtual” meeting
gave the impression of embattled executives hiding behind technology. To make matters worse, when the USPX contacted the firm to discuss the matter, our phone calls and letters were ignored.
In mid-August, Symantec released its proxy materials, confirming that they would hold an entirely virtual meeting on September 20th. The USPX huddled with institutional and individual investors to discuss options. The consensus was to organize a letter writing campaign expressing our concerns to Symantec and asking that they convert their meeting into a hybrid format, allowing shareowners to attend in person or electronically.
We are asking all individual and institutional shareowners to write letters, copies of which will be posted to this website. Here is what you need to do.
1. First, learn what has been going on at Symantec and with “virtual” annual meetings. Our Campaign Document is an eye-opener: Read the Campaign Document.
2. Draft your letter. You can start with one of the sample letters below. Each is in text format, so you can cut and paste it into a text editor of your choice. Insert your name and contact details. You can change the wording to personalize the message.
sample letter 1 focuses on problems at Symantec.
sample letter 2 focuses on the issue of virtual annual meetings.
sample letter 3 asks to attend the annual meeting in person.
3. Mail your letter to
Mr. Enrique Salem, CEO
350 Ellis Street
Mountain View, California 94043
Send copies to
Scott Taylor, Symantec Corporate Secretary
Helyn Corcos, Symantec Head of Investor Relations
If you prefer to e-mail your letter, send it directly to Helyn Corcos at [email protected]
. Be sure to ask her to forward copies to Salem and Taylor.
4. Get noticed! Forward us a copy of your letter, and we will post it on this site along with all the other letters. You can e-mail us a copy in PDF or Word format at [email protected]
. If you prefer, mail us a hard copy at
United States Proxy Exchange
PO Box 381658
Cambridge, MA 02238
5. Join the USPX. We will continue to monitor Symantec, and we are organizing a robust shareowner response to emerging “virtual” shareowner meetings. Our work is funded entirely from your membership dues. We need your support. Please join now!
6. Forward a link to this webpage to other shareowners and encourage them to write letters too.