Governance research firm Glass Lewis is to cease operating its engagement platform Meetyl as a standalone product.
Meetyl, which Glass Lewis acquired in 2014, offered investors a range of tools, though, most importantly, it provided a platform for investors to schedule face-to-face meetings with corporate management.
At the time of the acquisition, companies that had used Meetyl included Intel, Legg Mason Global Asset Management and Marsh & McLennan, owner of consultants Mercer.
Meetyl was co-founded in 2012 by former Wall Street investor Jeffrey Tha and software developer Robert Ho, who created one of the first online dating websites, Reciprodate.
At the time of the deal, Katherine Rabin, GL’s CEO, said: “Investment professionals prefer to communicate with companies directly and privately, and the Meetyl platform allows them to do so efficiently. The power of the service is that it facilitates engagement in a way that is disruptive to the status quo and beneficial to the entire investment chain.”
The acquisition has allowed Glass Lewis to significantly expand its engagement activity over the last four years, quadrupling activity to more than 4,000 engagements with companies in 2018.
But supporting this two-sided conversation via a separate platform has also been time consuming.In addition, many of the sell-side functions have been replaced by buy-side functions and other external service providers, as opposed to technology-based solutions.
These developments have persuaded GL that it did not make the best sense to continue to offer Meetyl as a standalone product, but instead to incorporate many of Meetyl’s offerings into its own technology so it can focus on the engagement needs of its own analysts.
“We decided the best use of our energy was to internalize the Meetyl application” — KT Rabin
In an email to RI, Rabin said: “Given the continued reliance on service-based solutions in the corporate access market, and the myriad opportunities within our core business, we decided the best use of our energy was to internalize the Meetyl application and stop promoting it to external users.”
GL also noted that many of its clients are building engagement capacities internally, and relying less on external management of these relationships.
Meanwhile, Glass Lewis has expanded its strategic partnership with CGLytics, which will serve as the global provider of compensation datasets and analytics to Glass Lewis, with an initial focus on North American, Australian and European markets.