I tuned in for the Virgin Money Holdings (UK) (LON:VM.) interim results podcast at 9.30 this morning. I've listened to one or two from other companies in the last year and what a treat they are. It's such a great benefit to be in on these presentations, to hear every word and in real-time. Long ago private investors would get at best a summation in a line or two in a newspaper, or the IC, a day or a week later, if at all, and long after the price had moved as a result of it, one way or the other.


The Virgin Money one didn't work properly in my Firefox browser, I could see the slides but had no sound, so I missed the start faffing switching to Chrome - but my own tech issues were nothing compared to Virgin's poor performance. Was anyone else listening, was it just me?  The sound quality was terrible, with the levels constantly varying from faint to loud. It was as if the microphone was suspended on the end of a long piece of string that was arcing back and forth across the room as the CEO and then the CFO were speaking. I guess they were turning one way and then the other to address the audience in the room and there was just one central, fixed mic. The levels were up, down, up down. It was horrible. And seeing as how Virgin Money present as being the cutting edge tech-savvy bank it was not good enough. Was no-one monitoring the levels and/or unable to do anything about it? Maybe it had all seemed OK when setting up - when no-one was moving their head from side to side as they spoke. When the analysts got to pose questions at the end their sound level was fine, no problem with the volume going up and down. Bah.

I've checked the archived podcast, on the link above, and it sounds fine, I'm not sure why it didn't at the time...

Something interesting that happens during real-time audiocasts is that PI's have the edge over the analysts in the room - as in we are buying or selling, reacting immediately. Not so easy if you are a highly-paid expert sat in the room forming a brainy question.


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