March 19, 2009
I have been a Venture Capitalist for more than 25 years, and was an early investor in the Santa Monica Fund.
As a Venture Capitalist, I bemoan the fact that it is increasingly hard to bring small companies public, but it is even harder track these companies once they are public, as few financial firms follow small and micro cap companies.
Therefore, it is essential that small companies continue to send information to their investors. But, nearly all stock brokerage firms now require their customers to hold stock “in street name.” Many will not accept a sell order, unless they hold the stock in street name.
Thus, by the SEC’s accounting, very small companies end up with very few shareholders of record, which in turn leads to delisting. This has happened to several of my holdings during the last ten years.
At a time when everyone is calling for more “transparency” for investments, we should not restrict the ability of investors in small companies to remain informed.