Kellogg : Complementing transparency

Simple techniques support a commitment to disclose.

click to view

The Site

Kellogg, US-based cereal and convenience food producer, enhances access to information about individual director’s dealings in the company’s shares. Kellogg provides substantial profiles of its 12 directors within two sub-sections of Investor Relations: Business Information and Corporate Governance. In each location an in-page index is provided, within which entries can be expanded, by clicking on a ‘+’ button, to show individual profiles. Each profile has a footnote stating the number of company shares held by the director and a highlighted expandable link to ‘view Transactions’. Transactions are listed in reverse chronological order (most recent first) for the past 10 years in a simple table showing Date, Type [of transaction], Shares Traded [quantity] and Price Range. The information is credited to a third-party provider (EDGAR Online) and its limitations (non-monetary transactions are excluded) noted and a link provided to Kellogg’s official SEC filings, where all transactions are included. Corporate Governance also has tables of Director & Officer Stock Transactions and Ownership, while the separate Leadership Profiles in Business Information have details of share ownership if held.

The Takeaway

The mere act of making information about directors’ shareholdings in the company available online already represents a rare degree of disclosure. But Kellogg then heightens the sense of transparency by the ease of access it provides to the information. Partly this is achieved by giving the information a relatively high profile in the navigation, but the way it is presented is also critical. That the chief mechanism chosen for this – expand/contract controls – is a well-tried and familiar one reinforces the sense that openness comes naturally and leads to an intuitive information service in which content is brought to the user. This is enhanced the ‘slicing and dicing’ of the main transactions archive and by the inclusion of the directors’ page separately within relevant sections, so that it can still be viewed in context.
First published 10 January, 2012
< Back to Tips