Water Tower Research LLC was formally launched on Thursday by Wall Street veterans and former colleagues Tim Gerdeman and Shawn Severson to provide issuer-sponsored equity research and investor intelligence.
The newly minted research firm will help companies tap into smart, well-thought-out market research. But more significantly, Water Tower said it is writing “research for the other 99%” as the equity research is digitally distributed and free-to-access for institutional and retail investors, unlike traditional commission-and subscription-based equity research “intentionally limited to a narrow paying audience.”
Water Tower is initially showing its research skills in covering the Bioeconomy, Biotechnology, Chemical Materials and Technology, ClimateTech and Sustainable Investing, Emerging Growth & Special Situations, Industrial Technology, and Oil & Gas/Energy verticals. The company said “rapid sector coverage expansion” is planned for the second half of the year.
In a statement, Water Tower Research co-founder and CEO Gerdeman said: “Having personally witnessed the decline of the sell-side commission-based equity research business model due to MiFID II and shrinking global commissions, it became obvious that a new approach was necessary to address hundreds of unsponsored companies struggling to connect with investors around the globe.”
Gerdeman added: “Water Tower Research is rapidly expanding with veteran Wall Street equity research analysts, all of whom are required to adhere to research rigor and fierce independence with their respective company and industry investor intelligence reports.”
The company’s board composition reinforces “a top-down commitment” to producing “unbiased and reliable” issuer-sponsored equity research and investor intelligence.
Water Tower Research is not a startup, but rather, a recapitalized scale-up of alphaDIRECT Advisors, initially founded in 2016 as an early pioneer of issuer-sponsored, digitally distributed equity research, with a particular expertise in the climate tech and sustainable investing sector.
“For too long, the traditional sell-side equity research model focused on the one-percent of large commission-paying investors, whereas our research and investor intelligence reports reach the other 99% of institutional investors, hedge funds, family offices, RIAs and retail investors overlooked by the sell-side,” said Water Tower Research co-founder and president Shawn Severson.
“Even large-cap management teams enjoying broad sell-side coverage increasingly voice frustration over continually meeting with the same handful of institutional investors on broker-sponsored non-deal roadshows and at brokerage conferences. Our free-to-access equity research addresses these unnecessary and intentional barriers to reaching the broader investment community.”
Water Tower Research is a wholly-owned subsidiary of alphaDIRECT Group LLC.
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