Reuters correspondent Claire Jim recently reported that Taiwanese smartphone maker HTC was scaling back production lines as cash flow worsened. Following the story, the stock rose as analysts credited the scoop as a key factor as investors predicted the cuts would lift cash flow.
Jim spoke about how the story was reported:
Q. How did you get this exclusive?
A. I was chatting with a source in the company about different matters when the source happened to mention HTC had shut some production sites to conserve cash and was thinking of selling them off. I then took those comments to other sources with good knowledge of the company as well as industry insiders to build up a fuller picture of what was going on. And to make sure I had the right details, I visited the plant to verify that some of the production lines had indeed been shut down.
Q. What types of reporting/sourcing were involved?
A. A lot of the story was the result of what some call “old-fashioned” journalism: getting out and going to places and meeting people. It’s still valuable even in the days of instant information on the net.
Q. What was the hardest part about reporting this story?
A. The hardest part was dealing with the company’s straight denial of what I had reported. Getting around that required ingenuity and a bit of creative thinking.
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