The issue backgrounders selected and published on this page were developed in the second-year financial public relations course (currently PUBR 2845) as part of Mount Royal University’s public relations program. Students select an organization to analyze in terms of issues of importance to investors and connected stakeholders.
Nestlé Creating Shared Value by Lily Harris (FIRST PLACE)
Nestlé is one of the world’s largest food and beverage companies, with a longstanding history since its inception in 1866 (Nestlé, n.d., para. 1). Over the years, the company has been involved with scandals of child labour, unethical promotion, pollution and mislabeling (Andrei, 2015, p. 1). Despite this reputation, the corporation asserts a strong commitment to creating shared value for all of the communities with which it is involved. Water security, plastics use, and environmental sustainability are high on the organization’s list of business principles (Nestlé Canada, n.d., para. 5). Corporate social responsibility (CSR), a company’s commitment to managing the social, environmental and economic effects of its operations responsibly, aligns closely with environmental sustainability activities (BDC, n.d., para. 1). Corporate social responsibility and environmental sustainability make up Nestlé’s dedication to creating shared value, which is aimed at achieving the “triple bottom line”: people, planet and profit (Singh, 2013, para. 4).
Shareholder Activism & Encana’s Head Office Change by Mikenna Ritchie (SECOND PLACE)
In a news release dated October 31, 2019 (Encana Corporation, 2019a), Encana announced their intention to relocate their headquarters to the United States. It was later announced this location would be in Colorado. Encana’s decision to relocate its corporate head office to the United States in 2020 has not been taken lightly by Calgarians and most specifically, their shareholders. A long-standing, Calgary-based company, Encana employs more than 2,500 people with over 40 per cent of staff based in Canada (Stephenson, 2019). However, due to the ongoing energy exodus and tumultuous market in Alberta, more companies are finding themselves in dire need to relocate to more reliable markets, like Colorado and Texas (Flexhaug, 2019). While this is a recent and on-going change to the organization, notable effects have already been seen. The announcement of relocation has caused a continuous downward fluctuation in their share price. According to BNN Bloomberg (Orland, 2019) and per Letko, Brosseau & Associates Inc. (2019), “Encana shares have declined by approximately 70% since September 2018”, when Encana began making organizational changes that signified their intentions to relocate to the United States.
Air Passenger Protection Regulations – Air Canada by Kennedy Bailey (THIRD PLACE)
Recently the Canadian Transportation Agency of Canada has announced new regulations for delayed or cancelled flights, denied boarding, tarmac delays, the seating of children under the age of 14, lost or damaged baggage and the transportation of musical instruments. These regulations were released in two parts and as of Dec. 15, 2019 both parts will be in effect. This report will focus on Air Canada and how the organization is communicating these new regulations with stakeholders. This report will include a SWOT analysis, recommendation and a communications plan for Air Canada.