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Researching a company's strategy - 5 hacks

Decoding a company's strategy can be a daunting task, here are 5 hacks that will make your life easy

1) Press Releases: Scan through the press releases/news section of the company website along with a web search. Ideally reading through the news dating back around 1 to 2 years will give you a good perspective of the strategic actions taken by the company.

2) Investor Presentations: Listed companies tend to publish investor presentations after filings their annual, quarterly results. This document covers some very vital clues on the strategic decisions, actions and the potential impact on company's performance in the near term future.

3) Call Transcripts: These are the transcripts of the conference calls of the company's management with the analyst community which tracks the company and write research reports on the company on regular basis. Many questions and the answers get exchanged on such calls uncovering some vital nuances of the strategic actions.

Because these answers come directly from the horse's mouth (management) the information will be credible.

4) Filings: The annual/quarterly filings of the company often carries a section where the views, outlook of the management gets published. For US based companies it is titled "Management, Discussions & Analysis" section. Reading this helps a lot in getting a better grip on the strategy.

5) Research Reports: The above research can be cross checked by scanning through the broker notes written on the company. Needless to say, do not get carried away by the analyst views but treat it as one of the perspectives of looking at the company while maintaining your independent observation (if any) derived from your own research.

Penning down key findings from all these sources and then joining dots will give you a comprehensive understanding of the current and future strategy of the company


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