Charline van Kesteren
As the Annual Shareholder Meeting “season” comes to a close, the Lumi team is finally able to sit back and reflect on our largest meeting to date. Coordinating several thousand shareholders requires two main things: thoughtfulness and rigorous planning. This year, I was able to witness for myself the amount of work that goes into putting together an event of this magnitude. It goes without saying that many suppliers work together to ensure the success of any Shareholder Meeting, but have you ever considered the amount of preparation that is required for the voting system used?
Before the meeting
A few weeks before the meeting, the lead operator goes to the venue for a site visit with the client. Based on the venue plan, a map of the 86 registration desks needed is carefully planned. The operator also oversees a number of details like how the cables are going to run from the registration area to the main technical site. This may seem like small detail but to put things in perspective, there is over 13 485 m of cable required for this shareholder meeting. The operator also programs the resolutions, the display screen and loads up the data of the shareholders in the Lumi software. Just to give you an idea, for each registration desk we need to have: 1 PC, a bunch of smartcards, 1 smartcard reader, 1 scanner and of course, several voting keypads to pass out to delegates.
On the other hand, the logistics also need to be well thought out. Together with the office manager we labeled over 90 computers, scanners and smartcard readers. We had to call in the help of our other global offices for some equipment in Germany, the Netherlands, UK and France. After ensuring that everyone in the team knew what their responsibilities and timelines were, off we went to the venue!
Set up of the meeting
Six cars with Lumi staff arrived the night before the build. My alarm clock is set for 5:00 am to be ready in the lobby in my Lumi shirt. During the build, the operators set up the voting computers in the meeting room while the rest of the crew prepares the different registration desks in the appropriate room and lays down the over 13 kilometers of cabling. The computers are cabled to a switch which is then cabled to the main server and everything is backed-up. During the build, every piece of equipment is tested multiple times. We also do what we call a stress test, where we register more than 25 fictional shareholders at the same time to be sure the registration system is fully operational. One failure on a registration desk can cause a lot of delays in the meeting. The Lumi AGM software is also regularly audited to be sure of the data and system security.
The next day the Lumi team arrives onsite particularly early. One last check of the equipment and the doors open. I’m behind one of the desks for the registration of the shareholders. I register the weighted votes of the shareholders in the system, burn their smartcard and give them a keypad. Lumi is there to help and react quickly when there is a problem. Once the registration is closed, we start the process of breaking everything down, and packing it up. On the other hand, the operators are in the main room. When the voting starts, an explanation slide of the voting system appears on the screen followed by the voting on the different resolutions. Once finished, the client receives detailed data of the results and a report on the rapidity of the registration. (I’ve included a sample for you below.) These results include a time stamp for the registration.
I am very happy to report that the voting at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) ran smoothly and saved loads of time!
The largest Lumi AGM in numbers:
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