At Openspace, we like to shine a spotlight on various members of our team to highlight their strengths, as well as showcase various aspects of what we do on a day-to-day basis. This week, we ask Nicole, who handles investor relations, for several pieces of advice when it comes to the subject.
1. What is your approach to building and maintaining relationships with investors?
On a fund level, I aim to be accurate and efficient in providing them the information they require on Openspace or their investment in our funds. Knowing their investment preferences or focus areas help when updating them on new investments we have made or coinvestment opportunities that we offer. Aside from that, I try to get to know them on a personal level and be sincere about it - remembering the little things they mentioned previously!
2. How do you ensure that the company's messaging is consistent and accurate when communicating with investors?
Having sat in with the Partners on countless investor introductions and other interactions, I piece together my own way of pitching Openspace, the firm, strategy and team. When each new team member joins, they are also introduced to the founding story of Openspace and our key differentiating factors. The firm also has weekly get-togethers (both physical and virtual) to ensure that all team members interact regardless of your role or seniority, which helps ensure that the team is well updated on various aspects of the firm and allows consistent communications.
3. How do you balance the needs and expectations of different types of investors?
Openspace as a platform has a lot of strengths and a lot to offer. The key is to figure out which investor has what specific needs and expectations and to focus communications around that. Typically, each type of investor (eg. SWF, Pension, Endowment, Corporate, FO) focuses more on a certain set of metrics and demands different levels of engagement. I make sure that they are connected with the right people within the Investments or Portfolio Success teams to address their needs.
4. How do you handle difficult or challenging investor interactions?
Stay calm and explain rationally. There could be a misunderstanding or miscommunication somewhere which just requires patience to resolve.
5. How do you measure the success of your efforts?
Given that we are currently fundraising for OSV IV and OSV+ II, I feel a great sense of accomplishment when we get commitments for the funds. Every meeting/call that goes smoothly with high level of engagement from the investor also counts as a small win. Outside of the fundraise, investors appreciate thoughtful and timely communication and give positive feedback when we deliver on their requests.
6. How do you collaborate with other departments (e.g., finance, legal) to ensure effective communication with investors?
I work very closely with our Finance team to prepare our quarterly reports for investors. Depending on investors’ specific requests/queries, I also collaborate with Legal, Investments and Portfolio Success to deliver the appropriate response. IR has to stay up to date on all key developments within the firm to be able to communicate effectively with investors. If there are more granular discussions required, I link the investors up with the relevant team members.