Saratoga Investment Corp. to Report Fiscal First Quarter 2017 Financial Results and Hold Conference Call
NEW YORK, June 14, 2016 /PRNewswire/ — Saratoga Investment Corp. (NYSE: SAR), a business development company, will report its financial results for the quarter ended May 31, 2016 on July 13, 2016, after market close. A conference call to discuss the financial results will be held on July 14, 2016. Details for the conference call are provided below.
Christian L. Oberbeck, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
Michael J. Grisius, President and Chief Investment Officer
Henri J. Steenkamp, Chief Financial Officer
Thursday, July 14, 2016
10:00 a.m. Eastern Time (ET)
Call: Interested parties may participate by dialing (877) 312-9208 (U.S. and Canada) or (678) 224-7872 (outside U.S. and Canada).
A replay of the call will be available from 1:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, July 14, 2016 through 1:00 p.m. ET on Thursday, July 21, 2016 by dialing (855) 859-2056 (U.S. and Canada) or (404) 537-3406 (outside U.S. and Canada), passcode for both replay numbers: 32861778.
Webcast: Interested parties may access a simultaneous webcast of the call and find the Q1 2017 presentation by going to the “Events & Presentations” section of Saratoga Investment Corp.’s investor relations website:
Saratoga Investment Corp.’s Form 10-Q for the fiscal year ended May 31, 2016 will be filed on July 13, 2016 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Source: Saratoga Investment Corp.
As many companies transition to cloud-based computing to handle both business operations and internal communication activities, CFOs are learning that they have to adapt to these changes and, in some cases, adopt new roles. Cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) suites are especially useful for today’s CFO since they allow for fast data consolidation and reporting. Since SaaS simplifies many activities and provides real-time data, CFOs can make important revenue-generating business decisions and complete financial forecasts with a high degree of accuracy. Here’s a closer look at the rise of SaaS and how this is changing the roles of CFOs:
Streamlining Data Reporting Processes
CFOs now have more easy access to data and business information than ever before. Instead of requesting reports and data from different departments, the CFO can log in to a dashboard and view information in real-time through SaaS services. This can reduce the need for crashing through thousands of pages, or having to send continuous email communications between departments. It also helps the CFO stay up-to-date on both internal and external activities. Having easy access to a dashboard of activities and being able to generate all types of financial reports in a few clicks can make it easier for a CFO to review operations, sales, and other departmental reports and information at their leisure.
Efficient Cost Management Review
CFOs are often tasked with analyzing and managing costs. This may entail coordinating meetings with multiple departments to review budgets and expense reports regularly. Using cloud-based platforms can help the CFO review financial activities across all departments in real-time and make key decisions when they are needed. Departments can simply upload reports, such as expense reports, monthly budget analyses, performance reports, and other key documents to a main hub that is accessible by all executives.
Streamlining Portfolio Management Analysis
Many CFOs are responsible for monitoring the financial firm’s portfolio companies. Having access to performance metrics and other key data in a centric dashboard can make it easier to review company performance of individual companies or clients, retrieve contact information, and identify any strengths and weaknesses that may need to be addressed. Using a cloud-based program means the CFO will be able to review monthly reports and cross-reference other departmental reports, such as top performers and details about potential clients, in order to make important decisions.
Optimizing Accounting and Tax Reporting Processes
The CFO must make sure all financial activities comply with accounting rules and may also be involved with auditing various internal processes. Using a cloud-based software program can help with these tasks and optimize all accounting-related and tax reporting processes. This can improve productivity so the CFO has more time to dedicate to other activities.
Faster Decision Making
When it’s time to make pivotal decisions for the company, from managing capital costs to executing a financial strategy, the CFO needs to use current and accurate data. They may need certain types of information at the last minute which can be impossible to locate in a company’s intranet or from the mass of e-mail distributions, or when certain documents are housed in a department’s folders and are password-protected. Using an ERP suite eliminates a lot of the searching and retrieval activities of reports, spreadsheets, and other company data, which means the CFO can gather information he or she needs quickly to thereby make timely decisions.
The rise of SaaS in the business world and the rapid adaptation of cloud-based ERP suites are changing the roles of today’s CFO. From streamlining data reporting to optimizing accounting processes, CFOs can enjoy numerous benefits from working with a cloud-based system. Security of these systems are obviously of critical importance, but those who acquire the skills and knowledge to navigate a SaaS dashboard and learn how to use all the tools available within an ERP suite can simplify many daily and monthly activities that help them make more informed decisions.
Photo Credit: Flickr/Perspecsys Photo
For any CFO, the first earnings calls have the potential to be a daunting undertaking. It requires a distinct focus on every aspect. From facts and figures to word choice and pacing, the more attention and preparation you put in, the more likely it is to be a success.
But how do you make it a success? With so many components to factor into your call, it’s best to make this a team effort. That includes going beyond the scope of your fellow executives. I remember my first call, and here is how my team and I made it a success.
Prepare, Prepare, Prepare
Let’s skip the first fact: the details. If you don’t have the correct figures in place, step back from the drawing board immediately and make sure the right numbers are on hand and to know them well.
Good. Now we can focus on the intangibles that might not come as naturally to CFOs.
My company brought in a scriptwriter to help craft our words so that they not only conveyed our message but did it in a way that would keep our audience’s attention. Some people don’t realize that the flow is just as important as the numbers and message. Numbers may not always excite everyone. Do what you can to make your presentation interesting and easy to follow. It should help create a better Q&A, or at the very least, an optimally informed group.
The scriptwriter also helped structure our wording from a visual setting. If your slides don’t state key messages, it’s time to revise. If you want a slide to explain how your company’s assets continue to grow, don’t title it “Total Assets.” It should be “Assets Continue to Grow.”
Once we had the right words where they needed to be, we prepped by reading the script over and over. I can’t stress how important it is to read the script to yourself and others out loud, and get as much feedback as you can. You don’t want a bored audience, but even more important, you don’t want a confused one. If you don’t test out the dialogue beforehand, you risking a tricky word choice that could veer your message off course.
Another good way to prepare is to sit in on some other calls. If you’ve risen through the ranks at your company, hopefully you’ve been able to hear how it’s been done in the past. If you don’t have that advantage or are new to the company, review transcripts from past presentations and get feedback from colleagues who were there.
Nuts and Bolts
With the proper flow and word choice, it’s time to prepare for what might happen. With other executives, analysts, investors, and the media all potentially on the call, it’s best to be as prepared for their questions as you are for the rest of your presentation.
The first step is to plan your agenda. How will everything run? Is it going to end with a Q&A portion? Will media be present? Knowing exactly who and what will be on your call is a can’t-miss part of your preparation.
With your message and key details cemented, you can anticipate most of the questions you will be asked. Take proactive steps to rehearse your answers. When asked a question, remember to pause and think, even if you know the answer right away. Going unprepared into a response can result in misspeaking or omitting a key point. Always pause, think, and then speak. Some questions may be tough to answer. Have your colleagues grill you on them.
Expect the Unexpected
Calls, as structured as they may be, don’t have set rules. Anything can happen. Technical glitches (even after checking your systems’ performance) and other slip-ups can happen.
Be sure to find a quiet area to make your call. You don’t want outside noise to become a distracting factor. Inside the room, remind yourself and everyone else to stay on script, because what you say is public record. What might be off the cuff and casual to one person might be a complete lack of decorum to another. Best to play it safe.
In the end, every call will boil down to your preparation. Know the facts. Know what you’ll be saying. And know that while the unexpected can happen, you can control only what’s within your bandwidth.
Best of luck.
This post was originally published on CFO.com
NEW YORK, May 2, 2016 – Saratoga Investment Corp. (NYSE:SAR) (“Saratoga Investment” or “the Company”), a business development company, today announced it will host an Investor Day in New York City on Wednesday, June 1, 2016 at 10:00 ET. Management will discuss a range of topics on all aspects of the Company’s financials, operations and investment strategy.
Led by senior management of Saratoga Investment, including Christian L. Oberbeck, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Michael J. Grisius, President and Chief Investment Officer, and Henri J. Steenkamp, Chief Financial Officer and Chief Compliance Officer, this forum will provide attendees with a strategic overview and review of the Company. There will also be CEOs of the Company’s portfolio companies in attendance and presenting.
Individuals interested in attending can contact Adam Prior of The Equity Group Inc. at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (212) 836-9606.
The presentation portion of the day will be archived on the Company’s website and available via the “Investor Relations” section of Saratoga’s website at http://saratogainvestmentcorp.com/.
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties and other factors enumerated in this press release and the filings Saratoga Investment Corp. makes with the SEC. Saratoga Investment Corp. undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
The rise of investor activism is certainly a controversial topic within many circles and industries. It’s even caused some companies to reshape their CFO searches. The business-development company sector is seeing a rise in activism as stocks fall across many institutions in the market. While boards will almost always agree that they are capable of guiding the company to success, some relationships between shareholders and the company indicate a disconnect between the two.
Shareholder activism tends to reveal this underlying miscommunication between a company and its shareholders. Many of these scenarios can be avoided with a proactive mindset and approach. At my business-development company, Saratoga Investment, we haven’t encountered any issues with shareholder activism to date.
We credit this to maintaining a healthy relationship with our investors that centers on proactive communication and mutual respect — ideally negating the need for escalation on the shareholders’ part, which can often feel hostile to a board and its management. When partnering in this type of communication with positive results and actions supporting various parties different interests, all parties can likely avoid escalating issues to a point of contentiousness. Instead, we can come together and discuss the best course possible for everyone.
A continued dialogue is essential to the success of a business-development company and the relationship with its investors. Our primary goals are maintaining quality through disciplined underwriting, keeping liquidity strong, and generating meaningful returns for our shareholders.
In doing so, our shareholders are more likely to see the short- and long-term benefit of investing with Saratoga and understand our direction. While short-term results have produced solid earnings, we discuss and remain focused on long-term returns. That’s why we suggest holding regular meetings to update investors of any pressing news or developments in the company and/or sector as disclosed in our public releases and earnings calls.
By laying out these goals and agendas during these releases, Saratoga maintains transparency with our investors. Having follow-up calls with us as requested allows them to voice ideas, questions, and concerns that may arise so that we may address them in a timely fashion. Certainly listening is key, but considering their insights is just as vital. You must listen and consider investor input whenever possible. These people are investing in your company. They deserve to be heard. You never know when some excellent ideas will come forth.
Even if the company opts to go in a different direction, the shareholders and the board can look back to see the healthy dialogue that led to this point. Sometimes more rounds of conversation will arise, but if the reasons and objectives are clearly laid out by the board, general understanding and respect is more likely to be reached.
We try to keep our fingers on the pulse of our environment, market, and the views of our various constituents, and take a proactive approach to communicating our successes. Thankfully, we’ve been able to avoid any significant setbacks in recent quarters, but negatives need to be communicated when they occur.
Even when negative news arises, there is an opportunity for proactive communication that leads to an expression of solutions and strategies. In some cases, this isn’t possible and the news must simply be delivered. But regardless of the scenario, healthy talks with investors are almost assuredly going to lessen tensions that could otherwise escalate and lead to hostile shareholder activism.
This post was originally published on CFO.com
Does your company’s interaction with shareholders feel more like an obligation than an opportunity? If so, it might be time to consider a different approach.
If you’re curious why this happens, think about the relationship between your business and its investors. Is there a high level of confusion or contention between investors and the board? Is the business’s approach to communication seen as a formality? Is your engagement usually conducted strictly during times of crises?
In recent years, articles and interviews with executives discussing shareholder engagement appear to be on the rise, indicating an uptick in awareness. Still, as a whole, businesses could stand to improve their outreach.
At Saratoga Investment Corp., we place a high emphasis on shareholder engagement and outreach. The reason is simple: proper investor outreach is mutually beneficial. By keeping your investors further informed on business proceedings, you give them a greater sense of immersion and connection to their investment. When investments continue to perform, investors are less likely to consider pulling their money from the venture. They may even opt to invest further.
In short, if your company isn’t thinking like a shareholder activist, maybe it’s time to consider a paradigm shift when it comes to your outreach. As Vanguard chairman and CEO F. William McNabb III notes, thinking like an activist helps your company in the very best sense. He elaborates, “Healthy and vibrant boards think like an activist in the very best sense. They ask:
- Where should we be pushing harder or taking costs out? What are the management team’s blind spots?
- What are the board’s blind spots?
- And how do we correct that? Some boards bring in sell-side analysts that have a ‘sell’ on the company to tell them what they’re missing.”
By thinking like an activist, your company can become proactive in ways that a shareholder couldn’t possibly from merely an investment standpoint. Now the business places itself in an advantageous position. Imagine the next time you communicate to your shareholders that you did notice areas of improvement. The issue was resolved and now the business is reporting the positive improvement to its investors.
That sort of engagement is bound to produce positive sentiment, don’t you think?
If your business effectively communicates its financial performance, that’s excellent, but it’s far from all you can do. To expand your outreach efforts, consider expanding the discussion to include strategy, risk assessments, and other topics that are important to investors. By discussing these, you give investors a higher level of transparency, which has a high likelihood of translating into a higher level of confidence and trust for your business.
Even if your business is working on producing the numbers your investors want to see, an in-depth engagement approach provides investors with a deeper level of understanding of your business. By granting access to more pertinent information, the investor is able to understand their investment on a deeper level — a desire you might have heard more about since the financial crisis.
From dedicated teams to a few tweaks, more of today’s businesses are listening to the opportunities and benefits that come with improved shareholder engagement. If your company hasn’t done so, it’s high time to at least consider adapting your current approach. In the end, all parties could reap the benefits.
This post was originally published on CFO.com
Adults under 30 years of age — the millennial generation — are faring well financially and enjoying their earnings, but only 26 percent report that they own any stock, according to a recent Bankrate survey.
The biggest reason for ignoring the stock portfolio is the misconception that millennials do not have enough money to invest. The second reason for neglecting to invest is not knowing anything about stocks.
A lack of trust in the market is also preventing many from believing investing is a viable way to save for the future. According to a Capital One Investing survey released by CNNMoney, 93 percent of millennials reported both a distrust of the market and a lack of investing knowledge.
Bottom line: Millennials are fearful and not knowledgeable enough to invest.
Fortunately, millennials have many resources at their disposal to learn about investing basics and pick out a few high-performing investments. Online wealth management firms and DIY brokerages are some good starting points. These resources and tools can help younger investors learn about investing strategies and create a starter portfolio that carries them through their working years. Learning about business development company (BDC) investments can be extremely valuable for a young investor who wants to build or diversify his or her portfolio.
How Millennials Approach Investing
In its “Millennials and Money” white paper, Merrill Lynch revealed the results of its Young High Net Worth Insights Survey, which shows 65 percent of young investors take the same approach as their parents. These investors are independent and skeptical, which means they may be more inclined to make carefully researched choices and be somewhat conservative in their approach. This generation makes thoughtful spending decisions and may not be so eager to indulge in luxury purchases or seek out high-risk stock trading activities.
BDCs might be the ideal option for millennials who want to diversify with minimal risk and also get the highest returns on their portfolio. Here are some important things millennials should know about BDCs:
Getting Started with BDC Investments
A BDC is a publicly registered company that provides financing to small and mid-sized businesses. BDCs fund other companies and answers to their own board of directors. BDCs were created by Congress in 1980 as an amendment to the Investment Company Act of 1940. These companies represent a very transparent portfolio of lines which are open for public trading without any restrictions.
People who choose to invest in BDCs are, therefore, investing in the performance of an company. BDCS can pay high dividends because they take on risks in the process of buying stock in various companies. Since their own portfolios are so diverse, well managed BDCs can show a steady track record of success, which in turn makes them even more appealing to individuals looking to build a portfolio.
Why BDCs Are So Attractive
One of the biggest reasons BDCs are so attractive to millennials is because they provide for diversification of funds. Instead of investing in a single stock or company, the investment is spread across dozens or hundreds of small businesses, which means the risk level is similar to that of a mutual fund. Young investors seeking out lower-risk opportunities may find BDCs to be among the most attractive options for their portfolio. For an idea of what this diversification looks like, take a look at this graph from my company, Saratoga Investment Corp. This is from our recent Q3 FY Earnings Report:
Another benefit of BDCs is the tax advantage. Like real estate investment trusts (REITs), BDCs are not taxed at the corporate level under certain conditions, which means they provide investors a higher dividend yields than other investments. This is one of the reasons why BDCs work so well in retirement accounts — when a shareholder holds a BDC in an IRA, they enjoy the benefit of tax-exempt gains and cash distributions.
Identifying the Right BDCs
Millennials exploring the idea of investing in BDCs need to do some due diligence to make informed decisions. Since these companies are transparent about their schedule of investments, it’s a good idea to review this information closely and focus on BDCs that are investing in companies with a positive cash flow. BDCs investing in fast-growing companies and market leaders are more likely to provide investors with high returns.
Young investors do not need to shy away from the prospect of investing when they arm themselves with valuable knowledge about stock trading and learn about attractive investment opportunities such as BDCs. With careful planning and an accurate assessment of risk, many millennials will find BDC investments to be an extremely valuable addition to their portfolio.
This post was originally published on ChrisOberbeck.com
The role of a CFO has evolved in recent years. Previously, CFOs were seen as financial-specific decisions makers, often just numbers people. That, now, is not the case in the large majority of corporations. A 2013 Consero Chief Financial Officer data survey found that 81% of the 1000 CFOs surveyed felt that their company saw them more as a strategic partner that went beyond the financial elements of the business.
The CFO now serves as an influential figure in the company. Whether a junior reports to you or not, it’s the CFO’s job to lead by example and teach when possible. From efficiency to leadership, a good CFO can shape the future of the company and set the team dynamic and culture, just like any other executive.
It’s not just board decisions where a CFO now can influence the organization. Today, a CFO has the opportunity to ensure that the future of the company looks bright by having a hand in the recruiting and training of its youth talent. If you’re not taking this proactive approach, it’s time to consider doing so–especially if you find your company lagging in internal promotion candidates or you’re losing top candidates to competitors.
If you find yourself struggling to establish this relatively new CFO mentality to your workplace, start by considering your communication efforts.
You can talk to your colleagues or you can communicate with them.
Effective communication conveys goals, messages, lessons, etc. to your team members. Be it the newest hire, the board or investors, you must get the right message across. With clear communication, everyone understands what must get done.
When it comes to hiring, if you can identify and communicate ideal traits and skills in a new hire to your Hiring Manager, they are best positioned to recruit the right applicants. Without stepping on the toes of your colleague, you’ve conveyed a need the company wants to fill with its newest addition–thus, displaying your foresight for the company as a whole while remaining a respectful team player.
Once you’ve recruited the right youth additions it’s time to cultivate that talent into the future leaders of the business. The first thing you can do is establish goals for the junior team members. With a direct marching order, they know what is expected of them. In the ideal scenarios, they’ll excel and you’ll just need to occasionally check-in to ensure their development is at optimal levels.
In other situations, your leadership could help steer them back on track.
Righting Their Ship
Sometimes your junior team members won’t reach their goals. When this occurs, you can choose to watch them sink, or try to offer them a hand.
A CFO with effective communication skills can help steer the junior back by reminding them of the goals they need. While re-establishing goals, you can hone in on the struggles of the associate, possibly allowing you an opportunity to impart some sage advice to ease their woes. If you have specific examples of their work, you can serve as a vital leader to them as you pinpoint examples of areas where they can improve. By providing them direct examples, they now have areas to specifically revise and build upon. Now that the employee has direct, concise feedback, they once again know exactly what is expected of them. And they have the opportunity to succeed or fail.
Now comes the fun part: taking notice of emerging talent.
It’s amazing to see people learn, improve and then rise in the company. As CFO, you should be looking at your company’s rising stars. If you pinpoint the potential leaders of tomorrow today, you benefit all parties. You’re showing talented juniors that the company wants them for the long haul and believes in them. They know you are invested in their potential and want to see them flourish with your business.
Conversely, your company now has a new name to consider for future leadership. The fact that you made the call further affirms your acumen as a strategic leader in the business. It was already clear you had the knack to lead, but this helps cement your status as a strategic business partner.
It was already clear to the company that you know the dollars and figures. By taking these steps, they now also understand that you know what is important in growing the business.
Saratoga Investment Corp. to Report Fiscal Year End and Fourth Quarter 2016 Financial Results and Hold Conference Call
NEW YORK, April 19, 2016 – Saratoga Investment Corp. (NYSE:SAR), a business development company, will report its financial results for the fiscal year and quarter ended February 29, 2016 on May 17, 2016, after market close. A conference call to discuss the financial results will be held on May 18, 2016. Details for the conference call are provided below.
Christian L. Oberbeck, Chief Executive Officer
Michael J. Grisius, President and Chief Investment Officer
Henri J. Steenkamp, Chief Financial Officer
Wednesday, May 18, 2016
10:00 a.m. Eastern Time (ET)
Call: Interested parties may participate by dialing
(877) 312-9208 (U.S. and Canada) or (678) 224-7872 (outside U.S. and Canada).
A replay of the call will be available from 1:00 p.m. ET on
Wednesday, May 18, 2016 through 1:00 p.m. ET on Wednesday,
May 25, 2016 by dialing (855) 859 -2056 (U.S. and Canada) or
(404) 537-3406 (outside U.S. and Canada), passcode for both replay numbers: 94018191.
Interested parties may access a simultaneous webcast of the call and find the FY 2016 presentation by going to the “Events & Presentations” section of Saratoga Investment Corp.’s investor relations website, http://www.saratogainvestmentcorp.com/investor.html
Saratoga Investment Corp.’s Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended February 29, 2016 will be filed on May 17, 2016 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Your Board of Directors are a group of expert insiders offering a unique set of talents, expertise, and insights. Maintaining healthy relationships among team members is critical to the success of your company. There are several things you can do to ensure all parties stay on good terms with each other and are eager to contribute. Setting healthy boundaries, maximizing each member’s strengths and coordinating productive meetings is part of the process.
Here are some of the most effective ways to maintain healthy board relationships:
Maximize Available Time
Whether you’re scheduling a one-hour meeting to introduce a new idea or a longer meeting during a product launch, encourage attendees to show up on time and confirm their attendance at least a week in advance. This will help board members plan their schedules around the meeting and reduce the risk of delays on meeting day. If you are preparing a slideshow or a formal speech, make sure all materials are ready in advance, and preferably provided to them so that they can prepare.
Inform Your Board Members
As the head of your company, you know your company better than anyone. Your job is to inform board members of the risks, challenges, threats, and opportunities as they relate to your company and the market as a whole. Ensuring that board members know these factors will help them to do their job more effectively.
Slides can be powerful visual tools that can illustrate these points during a board meeting. Consider creating slideshows to present materials, charts and graphs, and then provide a copy of the presentation for attendees to review later. Graphical presentations are always more powerful than lots of words.
Set Management Boundaries
Board members provide valuable insights and make recommendations on various company activities. Their primary objectives should be to solve major problems and find solutions—not to take on management roles. Encourage them to share their resources and participate in meetings. Make these tasks a priority during and after meetings, providing opportunities for board members to communicate their ideas and insights at every opportunity. This way, they will feel less obligated to take on management tasks and can provide more value to the company as a whole.
Handle Disagreements Effectively
Disagreements will arise but the board must focus on resolving the issue together. Encourage board members to state the issue clearly during a meeting and maintain respectful relations with other members as they work on solving a problem. Consider bringing in a third-party mediator to resolve conflicts or provide independent perspectives, but only if necessary.
Adhere to a Reporting Schedule
Make sure everyone is aware of what is going on and what key decisions are being made during all meetings by summarizing conversations in a meeting and creating reports on any actions taken, or to be taken. Make sure all board members receive this report shortly after a meeting so everyone stays up to date. This could take the form of a comprehensive summary of 10 to 20 pages, or a simple one-page outline of discussions and action steps agreed upon. This report should be distributed to attendees within a week of the meeting.
At the end of the day, it’s all about results. You need to be proactive in order to maintain healthy board relationships and coordinate productive board meetings through business challenges, growth phases, and when making key business decisions. Use these tips to maximize meeting times and make full use of your board member’s expertise to help move your business forward.
Henri Steenkamp is a finance executive with over 15 years of experience in his field. Steenkamp serves as chief financial officer, treasurer and chief compliance officer of New York City based Saratoga Investment Corp. (NYSE: SAR) and Saratoga Investment Advisors, LLC.