9 Times Public Filing Search Saved the Day

Companies new to disclosure research – also known as public filing search – often ask us: “How will it help me?”

Over the years we’ve learned that regardless of industry, having access to a robust and reliable database of publicly filed documents is a game-changer for companies.  It places directly in your hands the most relevant information in the least amount of time, making you look like a superstar in front of your bosses and colleagues.

The list of ways in which a solid disclosure research practice helps companies is a lengthy one, so sometimes the value is better understood by looking at real-world examples of how disclosure research saves the day. We’ve compiled some of our favorites from our clients below:

  1. When new accounting rules are tough to follow:

“I was [recently] tasked with obtaining copies of audit and other reports issued by other firms since the [all the designations in Canada merged into CPA], so that our firm could review and determine if the sign-off on our reports was appropriate. Given the slight differences in the requirements dictated by the provincial accounting bodies the sign-off was not the same across all provinces and as such we required reports for each province from several different firms.

The DisclosureNet filters and full text searching saved me mass amounts of time as I was able to filter by firm, type of report and province. A task that may have taken days to perform otherwise was completed in a matter of hours. Thank you DisclosureNet!” – Senior Accountant, MNP LLP

  1. When you need quick access to restatements for a group of companies:

“[A few months ago], DisclosureNet helped me find examples quickly and efficiently of restatements of previously issued financial statements and of companies using the Monte Carlo simulations for option pricing. This avoided me having to search companies individually on EDGAR and use a common search term across a plethora of financials.” – Senior Auditor, Big Four Accounting Firm

  1. When you work for a $2 billion company and are responsible for ensuring high-quality SEC filings that are in line with peers:

“EnerSys is a public company with $2 Billion in revenue and over 10,000 employees. I am responsible for all SEC filings, accounting topic research and any other internal analysis that comes up. The time I have at my disposal to ensure a quality filing is very limited. I count on DisclosureNet as one of my primary resources.

“The tool helps me to research company filings in an efficient manner, share my research with my colleagues, receive alerts when peer companies file, etc. I consider DisclosureNet to be a key component to improving my knowledge and the quality of my SEC filings.” –Director of External Reporting, EnerSys

  1. When your client needs a bulk of insider trading info for a large group of companies, STAT:

“Client needed to receive insider trading information for all 32 companies in our coverage universe in short order. Going through company filing or SEDI would have taken hours. But managed to get the data in minutes using DisclosureNet. Literally could not have been done otherwise” – Associate, Equity Research, Real Estate and REITs, Top 5 Bank

  1. When you need to prove a point in a critical phone call during a major legal transaction:

“It was getting close to midnight. Our underwriting agreement was still not finalized, despite hours of emails, calls, and markups flying back and forth. The other side’s counsel were litigators by trade and they had refused to accept almost every single update we had added to the agreement, despite the fact that the language came straight from the bought deal letter their client had executed.

I could hear the exhaustion in the partner’s voice on the phone. If we didn’t nail this agreement down now, this deal could fall apart.

A key point of contention was whether a particular term relating to a president’s list was “market”. Having never worked with a president’s list before, and this being only my second bought deal in my life, I had no idea. But the partner did. “Get on DisclosureNet and get me any instances of this wording being used in the past little while,” he said. We had only a few minutes before the other counsel was to join us on the call.

I jumped on DisclosureNet and did better than that. I [found] copies of [several relevant precedents in] DisclosureNet just as the other side’s counsel joined the call. They quickly got to the point and announced that our proposed wording was not market and not going to be acceptable to [their] client.

As a second-year associate, I don’t do much talking when there’s a partner on the line. But I had the whole power of DisclosureNet behind me. “Actually,” I said calmly, “this language appears in [several precedent examples]. In addition, this language is drawn directly from the bought deal letter your client signed, in the third paragraph down on the first page.”

I cannot describe to you how it felt to hear this renowned litigator go silent, shuffle some papers, and say “….oh.” The language stayed in, the deal closed, and the partner commented on how impressive that was. That’s the power of DisclosureNet.” – Associate, Corporate Law Firm

  1. When you need to always be on the lookout for the latest SEDAR & EDGAR filings:

“I’m often asked to look out for particular things, essentially just waiting for them to appear on SEDAR or EDGAR. Before I began using DisclosureNet, this entailed diarizing several reminders throughout the weeks and months, and manually checking company profiles to see if the relevant documents were indeed submitted.

This was all streamlined once I began using DisclosureNet and discovered the email alert. All of that planning and checking time has now been reclaimed to more productive activities! Very grateful to have this invaluable tool in my arsenal.” – Associate, Top 5 Law Firm

  1. When a client requests an historical precedent filing and you don’t know where to start:

“DisclosureNet has an amazing system. I was able to locate a public document for a client that had been originally filed on SEDAR in 2004, while he was on a call with a potential business partner, in under five minutes. DisclosureNet made me look like gold, and sealed the deal for the transaction!”-Senior Associate, Top 5 Law Firm

“I was asked to urgently locate old by-laws for a particular Canadian bank. The lawyer hadn’t been able to find them anywhere online. A DisclosureNet rep assisted me in creating a search string and I was able to locate the by-laws quickly. The lawyer and client were very pleased at the efficiency of my research.” – Research Assistant, Top 5 Law Firm

  1. When you want and need to get the latest information on any topic to your client quickly:

“When trying to determine market practice for transaction terms or disclosure matters, DisclosureNet is our first stop. DisclosureNet not only allows our firm to provide our clients with answers to questions they ask of us, it also allows us to add value in other ways. In a recent transaction, our firm was assisting a client with a transaction for which it was important to know the identity of the client’s significant shareholders.

Shortly before the relevant documents were being finalized, we received [an alert] informing us of filings by a new significant shareholder. We were able to take the appropriate steps and modify the documents accordingly, in order to ensure our client stayed in step with securities laws.” – Partner, Top 15 Law Firm

  1. When your job depends on finding exactly the right words…

“I discovered DisclosureNet only 1 year ago, and it has completely changed the way I work. As a translator, I have to search content in two languages, and DisclosureNet is the only tool that allow for a multiple language search… without having to open two windows or to switch the page from one language to another. It’s an essential and time-saving tool.” – Senior Translator, Big Four Audit Firm

Wondering how Certent DisclosureNet can help you do better, more efficient work? Sign up for our 30-day free trial to find out!