Shareholders had only one question for Geneva Steel officials at the company's first stockholder's meeting: What's the company doing to promote its stock?

The answer: continuing to build Geneva's reputation as a modern, low-cost/high quality steel producer that is responsive to customer's needs.Geneva President Joe Cannon and other company officials met with about 60 shareholders recently at Sundance. Two shareholders flew to Utah from New York in order to attend the meeting.

Most shareholders - 80 percent - voted by proxy on business items addressed during the meeting. Geneva has about 8,000 shareholders; about 65 percent of the company's public stock is held by institutions: insurance companies, banks, etc.

Geneva's mission is to remain a long-term competitor in the global steel industry by producing quality steel at competitive prices, Cannon told shareholders. The company is striving to maximize returns for shareholders and provide a satisfying work environment for employees.

In addition to providing jobs in the community, Geneva is working to protect the environment and enhance the overall quality of life here, Cannon said.

An integral part of the company's competitive strategy is modernizing its facilities to cut pollution and make steel more efficiently. Geneva spent about $32 million on modernization projects during fiscal 1990; projects underway are on time and under budget, Cannon said. By 1992, the company plans to spend a total of $239 million on modernization.

As far as the company's bottom line, net sales were down about $4.8 million in fiscal 1990 as a result of a softening steel market. In 1989, Geneva had sales of $521.8 million. In fiscal 1990, sales were $516.9 million.

"We had a pretty good year given that there was a lot of pressure in the market place," Cannon told the Deseret News. "A large part of that is because we are flexible in our operations. We are able to make more plate and less hot rolled coils, and just that change in our product mix . . . helped offset the general lowering of (steel) prices."

In fiscal year 1989, 58 percent of the company's sales were for sheet steel. In fiscal year 1990 sheet products made up 42 percent of its sales base while plate steel represented 46 percent of its sales. Geneva shipped 1,390 tons of steel products during the year.

Geneva's stock, which first entered the market in March 1990 at $10 per share, has fluctuated from a low of $81/4 to a high of $143/4; as of Wednesday, the stock was selling for $103/8 on the New York and Pacific stock exchanges. Net income per common share of stock was $3.18 in 1990.

During the annual meeting, shareholders voted to retain Geneva's board of directors for the coming year. Board members are: Robert A. Johnson, general counsel for Geneva; A. Thurl Jacobson, a former vice president of Amerada Hess Corporation; R.J. Shopf, president of Southwest Business Associates; A. Blaine Huntsman, chief executive officer of Olympus Capital Corp.; Joseph A. Cannon, president of Geneva; Arch L. Madsen, president emeritus of Bonneville International Corp.; and Robert J. Grow, Geneva's executive vice president.

They also reappointed the accounting firm of Arthur Andersen and Company as Geneva's auditor, and approved an incentive program through which key employees will be given shares of the company's class A common stock.