> So, in a way, American companies really ARE answerable to their shareholders - if only in a "bring the company down if things go bad" way?
Yes--both because of shareholder rights actions, but also because of rules requiring independent directors (that is, not company employees or retirees), and requiring that independent directors exercise supervision of things like executive compensation.
This is not perfect, by any means--the role of "independent director" is now sometimes used as a means of de facto bribery of public officials (notably Sen. Christopher Dodd, co-author of the Dodd-Frank financial regulation bill, whose wife was an unbelievably-compensated independent director of several major banking firms, despite having no experience in management or banking whatsoever).
The most important aspect of the American financial system is transparency. Not so much the details you can see--but which companies scrupulously provide the bare minimum required, and which companies describe who they are, what their strategies are, how they view the future, and so forth. Avid is a good example of the former--Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett's annual letter to shareholders is a legendary example of the latter.
When a famously transparent company like Berkshire Hathaway has a problem, they'll likely announce it before the day of the investors conference call; but even if they didn't, they'd be cut slack by the investor community because they have a solid reputation for credibility. When a much more reserved company, like Avid, whiffs on reporting, it looks far worse.
Much as I like throwing rocks at Avid as the next person, I hope they don't fold. Sibelius is too valuable--and if Sibelius folds, so does this forum. Regardless of when Steinberg's solution appears, there will be a need for a stable, mature, ribbon-equipped (forgive me, I just had to say that) music notation application; at least until Steinberg has a couple of revisions to fill out their features list.
Sibelius 2 - 7.1.3 | Hauptwerk 4
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