Mining Conference Zoom Meetings Overwhelming

City Investors Circle – Mining Conference Zoom meeting invites

As a keen investor in the mining sector, for over 20 years, I love attending mining conferences, all over the world, meeting new people, and hearing about potential projects to invest in.

Covid put paid to attending in person, but opened up a new opportunity, attending remotely (virtually) utilising Zoom meetings. This worked well for a while, but recently I have found I have been overwhelmed by meeting requests.



121 Mining Conference, Cape Town

In the good old days of personal meetings – 121 Conference in Cape Town, SA.


Mining Conference Zoom invites are becoming overwhelming

As a keen investor in the mining sector for over 20 years, I love attending mining conferences, all over the world, meeting new people, and hearing about potential projects to invest in.

Covid put paid to attending in person, but opened up a new opportunity, attending remotely (virtually) utilising Zoom meetings. This worked well for a while, but recently I have found I have been overwhelmed by meeting requests.

I have already attended 94 virtual ZOOM meetings with companies this year, attending conferences in three continents, and two more conferences in the next two weeks will knock that up to around the 120 mark.


Mining Conference Zoom Meeting invites are coming overwhelming

What started out as a fantastic idea, a remote meeting over Zoom, allowing investor and company to keep in touch, has morphed into something a lot less attractive, as meeting requests arrive by the bucketful, almost daily, from many different sources.

Companies that you have met at conferences are now subsequently offering direct invitations to investors for “follow up” calls, as investor contact details are given to the corporate sponsors after the event. At the same time, conferences are plentiful, resulting in yet more invitations.

Some IR companies have now joined the party, resulting in yet more unsolicited invitations to meet with their clients, relevant or not.

Quite simply, they have created a monster!


Shocked at how the ‘invitation’ system really works

Some companies seem to have become serial presenters, and participate in virtually every conference, including those that occur within a short space of time of each other. 121 and Mines and Money conferences are often held within a few days of each other, for example.

It has become common, therefore, to receive an invite to meet a company I’m already scheduled to meet the week before!  I did think perhaps it was down to a careless IR guy not checking for duplicate meetings, or recording a list of previous meetings.

But I have now discovered that that assumption was actually wrong. I received a late request to meet a company I had just spoken to a few days before, and as a shareholder, emailed the CEO directly.

I was surprised when he replied that they don’t set the meetings, the conference people are doing that!  What?  So I go to all the trouble to ensure all meetings I accept are relevant for myself, and I assumed the companies looked at my profile to check for relevance before issuing invitations.

Not so!


Persuasion is now being used

I have just received a call from a conference administrator, asking why I had declined a couple of meetings. When I replied it was because my slots were limited due to the time difference, I was offered meetings outside the conference time to accommodate me. I felt painted into a corner, and agreed to take them.

I was then asked if I would meet another couple of companies, and I said I had enough meetings already. The lady then used gentle persuasion to convince me to meet these two companies, with her pointing out that they met my criteria, and me agreeing to see them, as once again I felt it easier to agree.


Why is this an issue?

The point here is of course that if the conference organisers are making the meetings, they may not be as relevant as if investors and corporates are arranging them directly themselves.

I was always under the impression I was receiving an invitation directly from the company, from either the CEO in the case of a small company, or the IR guy if a larger one. Some of my responses were positive because I felt they were inviting me directly, and that will change now.


My method of selecting companies that are relevant to meet

I have been asked before how I select companies to meet when a conference has, say, 100 or more participants, or in the case of PDAC, over 500.

My method requires a bit of work initially, but pays dividends later.

When I am invited to participate in a conference, I download the list of attending companies onto a spreadsheet, and sort by market cap, metal, producing/ developing/  exploring, countries of operation etc.

I end up with a spreadsheet where I colour in positives and negatives using a traffic light colour system, where, for example, Gold is green, development is amber, project located in North Korea would be red.

I focus on market caps (generally) between $20 million and $500 million, anything either side would be an amber, or red, if too large or small.

When I receive an invite I refer to the spreadsheet and my decision is made for me, two reds and it’s a definite no, greens make a yes more likely, and ambers would generally make me have a quick look at the company before replying.

So, a company located in a tier 1 jurisdiction, with a gold project in development or production would be an instant yes, and a company with a greenfield exploration project for tungsten in Venezuela would be a definite no. The colours make the decision in a flash and it takes the emotion out of it.



The knowledge that conference organisers are making meeting invitations rather than the companies themselves has altered my perspective.

I will no longer feel obliged to accept a meeting from a company where I know the CEO because it isn’t him issuing the invitation!




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