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New Fairfax Corporate Site!


Parsad
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Boring, unimpressive and a little amateurish. Surely a company like FFH can do better. It always concerns me about a company's marketing compentecy when something like this comes out. Reminds me of FBK who did this but later came out with quite a polished presentation. Perhaps FFH's site is just unfinished - looks like that anyway.

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Boring, unimpressive and a little amateurish. Surely a company like FFH can do better. It always concerns me about a company's marketing compentecy when something like this comes out. Reminds me of FBK who did this but later came out with quite a polished presentation. Perhaps FFH's site is just unfinished - looks like that anyway.

 

What do you need more? All information is easy to find and clear(er) (than before).

 

Do you want management to spend our money on a flashy corporate website? Let them keep the few thousands of dollars and give it to charity...

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It is all perception. They say you can't judge a book by its cover - but many do.

 

Impressions are important. If you are going to invest with someone or meeting with a real estate salesman and when they meet you for the first time you see them driving a beat up old car and are dressed in a sloppy manner, it doesn't make a very good impression. I don't care who you are or what you are selling (insurance or investments) it is always important to put forth a good impression. As someone once said " A shiny red apple will always sell better than a dull green one."

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It is all perception. They say you can't judge a book by its cover - but many do.

 

Impressions are important. If you are going to invest with someone or meeting with a real estate salesman and when they meet you for the first time you see them driving a beat up old car and are dressed in a sloppy manner, it doesn't make a very good impression. I don't care who you are or what you are selling (insurance or investments) it is always important to put forth a good impression. As someone once said " A shiny red apple will always sell better than a dull green one."

 

cwericb,

 

I agree, it is all about perception. The funny thing is how differently people can perceive the same thing. Personally, I often choose the dull apple because it means that it is not commercially waxed, and an unwaxed apple that looks half-decent is usually from the recent/fresh crop (they haven't been sitting in cold storage for months).  Waxed apples often look much better than they taste. I would say that this is the basic idea behind value investing - be willing to buy something for what it is, rather than what it looks like.

 

A salesman I worked with traded in his Porsche for a Volkswagen because he perceived that he was losing business--clients thought he was a bit too successful and that he was making too much money from their deals.

 

I don't agree that Fairfax's current or past website is the equivalent of a salesman arriving in a beat-up car and an ill fitting suit. It's not flashy, but perhaps it appeals to the type of people that they want as business partners and shareholders.

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Impressions are important. If you are going to invest with someone or meeting with a real estate salesman and when they meet you for the first time you see them driving a beat up old car and are dressed in a sloppy manner, it doesn't make a very good impression. I don't care who you are or what you are selling (insurance or investments) it is always important to put forth a good impression. As someone once said " A shiny red apple will always sell better than a dull green one."

 

I think this is the general attitude to these things, but I'm guessing Fairfax, not unlike Berkshire or Leucadia, is trying to attract a certain shareholder.  If investors cannot get over these things, it's their loss.  Cheers!

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I hope for our sake (shareholders) that they aren't forming relationships from visitors on the web. Who cares if the website is boring and simple...if somebody is serious about learning about Fairfax, all the pertinent information is there. How come those that are complaining about it aren't howling about BRK's website, or Leucadia?

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I’m not trying to be argumentative, but I think some may have missed my point.

 

Sure the site is functional, yes it seems informative, and no doubt it provides the information required by investors.  But it definitely lacks on the presentation side. Fairfax is a big, worldwide company and it wouldn't hurt them to present a polished, attractive and interesting  website.

 

It is not just investors who are looking at this site, but it is the impression that it gives to brokers who sell their products and individuals and companies who purchase insurance.

 

Today a corporate website is a major form of advertising. Like it or not, consumers tend to judge a company by the by their presence in the media - be it newspaper ads, radio copy, TV spots or a corporate website.

 

What concerns me about this very lackluster website is that it raises a question about the competency  of their public relations and marketing people. If they don’t realize the importance of the image they present on the web it doesn’t instill much faith in their abilities. 

 

For those of us who have discussed this regarding Fibrek's site, FBK progressed from essentially a non-functional site to the very nice site they have today.

 

There is nothing “wrong” with the site, it is just a lot less than what it could be. Perhaps this is a work in progress and we will see some  improvements in the coming weeks.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

...“How come those that are complaining about it aren't howling about BRK's website, or Leucadia?”...

 

Jeez guys, don't get me started on them too!   

 

Just kidding. I don’t own them so it’s not really my place to comment. But just because there are other unattractive sites out there is not much of an excuse. I suspect all of these companies are attempting to present a formal type of site, but formal doesn't have to be plain and boring.

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tombgrt

You are correct of course. But if a broker wants to see an overview of Fairfax, he would likely go to Fairfax's site.

 

There is nothing 'wrong' with the Fairfax site, it is just not all it could be. The sites you quoted are examples.

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I'll stick up for cwericb.  I don't think a website has to be complicated and expensive to use screen real estate efficiently.  Take a look at the attachment of my browser window viewing the site.  A lot of wasted space.  Why not expand the info to fill the window?  I'd prefer a simple HTML site like berkshirehathaway.com for ease of reading than what they have.

 

I'm not too worried about the web site though.  It serves its purpose. But as cwericb said, It could be better.

 

--Eric

 

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Couldn't care less about the looks (It is a website, not a girl ;)).

As long as the information I need is there, and when I needed some help from the IR of Odyssey, they promptly replied with answers and relevant data. To me, that's more important than a fancy design.

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I would assume that, as an insurance company, they want to project a conservative image. The info is there, but not flashy.

Years ago when I was at another CPA firm their newsletter was made to not look purchased but prepared in-house and purposely had at least one misspelled word.

They obtained many clients from other firms who purchased their canned newsletters.

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The new site has lost some valuable content -- the shareholder meeting presentation slides.  Hopefully when the slides for 2011 are posted, some of the older slides can be reposted.  They're meaningful from year to year since they provide context and information not found in the AR.

 

-O

Looks like Fairfax has refreshed their corporate site.  Scroll down when you get there.  Going global anyone!  Cheers!

 

http://www.fairfax.ca/Corporate/default.aspx

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