Description of Securities
Description of Capital Stock
The following summary describes the capital stock of Aligos Therapeutics, Inc. (the “Company,” “we,” “us” and “our”) and the material provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, the amended and restated investors’ rights agreement to which we and certain of our stockholders are parties and of the Delaware General Corporation Law. Because the following is only a summary, it does not contain all of the information that may be important to you. For a complete description, you should refer to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, amended and restated bylaws and amended and restated investors’ rights agreement, copies of which are incorporated by reference as Exhibits 3.1, 3.2 and 10.4, respectively, to our Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Our authorized capital stock consists of 300,000,000 shares of common stock, $0.0001 par value per share, 20,000,000 shares of non-voting common stock, $0.0001 par value per share, and 10,000,000 shares of preferred stock, $0.0001 par value per share.
Common Stock and Non-Voting Common Stock
The holders of our common stock and non-voting common stock have identical rights, provided that, (i) except as otherwise expressly provided in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or as required by applicable law, on any matter that is submitted to a vote by our stockholders, holders of our common stock are entitled to one vote per share of common stock, and holders of our non-voting common stock are not entitled to any votes per share of non-voting common stock, including for the election of directors, and (ii) holders of our common stock have no conversion rights, while holders of our non-voting common stock have the right to convert each share of non-voting common stock into one share of common stock at such holder’s election, provided that as a result of such conversion, such holder, together with its affiliates and any members of a Schedule 13(d) group with such holder, would not beneficially own in excess of 4.99% of our common stock immediately prior to and following such conversion, unless otherwise expressly provided for in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. However, this ownership limitation may be increased to any other percentage designated by such holder of non-voting common stock upon 61 days’ notice to us or decreased at any time upon notice to us.
Each holder of our common stock is entitled to one vote for each share on all matters submitted to a vote of the stockholders, including the election of directors. Our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights in the election of directors. Accordingly, holders of a majority of the voting shares are able to elect all of the directors. In addition, the affirmative vote of holders of 66-2/3% of the voting power of all of the then outstanding voting stock will be required to take certain actions, including amending certain provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, such as the provisions relating to amending our amended and restated bylaws, our classified board and director liability.
Subject to preferences that may be applicable to any then outstanding preferred stock, holders of our common stock and non-voting common stock are entitled to receive dividends, if any, as may be declared from time to time by our board of directors out of legally available funds.
Rights Upon Liquidation
In the event of our liquidation, dissolution or winding up, holders of our common stock and non-voting common stock will be entitled to share ratably in the net assets legally available for distribution to stockholders after the payment of all of our debts and other liabilities and the satisfaction of any liquidation preference granted to the holders of any then outstanding shares of preferred stock.
Holders of our common stock and non-voting common stock have no preemptive, conversion, subscription or other rights, and there are no redemption or sinking fund provisions applicable to our common stock or non-voting common stock. The rights, preferences and privileges of the holders of our common stock and non-voting common stock are subject to and may be adversely affected by the rights of the holders of shares of any series of our preferred stock that we may designate in the future.
Fully Paid and Nonassessable
All of our outstanding shares of common stock and non-voting common stock are fully paid and nonassessable.
Our board of directors has the authority, without further action by our stockholders, to issue up to 10,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series and to fix the rights, preferences, privileges and restrictions thereof. These rights, preferences and privileges could include dividend rights, conversion rights, voting rights, terms of redemption, liquidation preferences, sinking fund terms and the number of shares constituting, or the designation of, such series, any or all of which may be greater than the rights of common stock. The issuance of our preferred stock could adversely affect the voting power of holders of common stock and the likelihood that such holders will receive dividend payments and payments upon our liquidation. In addition, the issuance of preferred stock could have the effect of delaying, deferring or preventing a change in control of our company or other corporate action.
Under our amended and restated investors’ rights agreement, certain holders of shares of common stock and non-voting common stock, or their transferees, have the right to require us to register their shares under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, so that those shares may be publicly resold, and certain holders of shares of common stock and non-voting common stock, or their transferees, have the right to include their shares in any registration statement we file, in each case as described below.
Form S-1 Demand Registration Rights
Certain holders of shares of our common stock and non-voting common stock, or their transferees, are entitled to certain Form S-1 demand registration rights. Beginning April 14, 2021, the holders of at least 30% of these shares can request that we register all or a portion of their shares (including the shares of common stock into which any shares of non-voting common stock held by such investors may be converted), so long as such holders request that we register at least 20% of the shares entitled to these demand registration rights and the aggregate proceeds, net of underwriting discounts and commissions, would exceed $20 million if the first offering or $5 million after the first offering. These stockholders may make up to two requests for registration on Form S-1.
Form S-3 Demand Registration Rights
Certain holders of shares of our common stock and non-voting stock, or their transferees, are entitled to certain Form S-3 demand registration rights. If we are eligible to use a Form S-3 registration statement, the holders of these shares can request that we register all or a portion of their shares on a Form S-3 registration statement if the anticipated aggregate offering price is at least $2 million, net of underwriting discounts and commissions and certain other expenses related to the sale of the shares. These stockholders may make unlimited requests for registration on Form S-3, provided that we are not obligated to effect, or take any action to effect, a registration on Form S-3 if we have effected two registrations on Form S-3 pursuant to requests by these stockholders within the twelve month period immediately preceding such request.
Piggyback Registration Rights
In the event that we determine to register any of our common stock under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, (subject to certain exceptions), either for our own account or for the account of other security holders, certain holders of shares of our common stock and non-voting common stock or their transferees will be entitled to certain “piggyback” registration rights allowing the holders to include their shares in such registration, subject to certain marketing and other limitations and the conversion of non-voting common stock into shares of common stock prior to registration thereof. As a result, whenever we propose to file a registration statement under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, other than with respect to certain registrations, including related to the sale of securities to employees pursuant to employee benefit plans, the offer and sale of convertible debt securities, an SEC Rule 145 transaction, or a registration on any form that does not include substantially the same information as would be required to be included in a registration statement covering the sale of the registerable shares, the holders of these shares are entitled to notice of the registration and have the right to include their shares of common stock in the registration. In an underwritten offering, the underwriters have the right, subject to specified conditions, to limit the number of shares such holders may include.
Expenses of Registration
We will pay the registration expenses, excluding underwriting discounts and commissions and certain other expenses, of the holders of the shares registered pursuant to the Form S-1 demand, Form S-3 demand and piggyback registration rights described above, including the reasonable expenses of one counsel for the selling holders not to exceed $50,000.
Expiration of Registration Rights
The Form S-1 demand, Form S-3 demand and piggyback registration rights described above will terminate, with respect to any particular stockholder, upon the earlier of (i) three years after the consummation of our initial public offering, (ii) the date that Rule 144 or another similar exemption under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, is available to such stockholder for the sale of all of such stockholder’s shares without limitation during a three-month period, or (iii) upon the consummation of a merger or consolidation.
Anti-takeover Effects of Provisions of our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation, our Amended and Restated Bylaws and Delaware Law
Some provisions of Delaware law and our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws contain provisions that could make the following transactions more difficult: acquisition of us by means of a tender offer; acquisition of us by means of a proxy contest or otherwise; or removal of our incumbent officers and directors. It is possible that these provisions could make it more difficult to accomplish or could deter transactions that stockholders may otherwise consider to be in their best interest or in our best interests, including transactions that might result in a premium over the market price for our shares.
These provisions, summarized below, are expected to discourage coercive takeover practices and inadequate takeover bids. These provisions are also designed to encourage persons seeking to acquire control of us to first negotiate with our board of directors. We believe that the benefits of increased protection of our potential ability to negotiate with the proponent of an unfriendly or unsolicited proposal to acquire or restructure us outweigh the disadvantages of discouraging these proposals because negotiation of these proposals could result in an improvement of their terms.
Delaware Anti-takeover Statute
We are subject to Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law, which prohibits persons deemed “interested stockholders” from engaging in a “business combination” with a publicly-held Delaware corporation for three years following the date these persons become interested stockholders unless the business combination is, or the transaction in which the person became an interested stockholder was, approved in a prescribed manner or another prescribed exception applies. Generally, an
“interested stockholder” is a person who, together with affiliates and associates, beneficially owns, or within three years prior to the determination of interested stockholder status did own, 15% or more of a corporation’s voting stock. Generally, a “business combination” includes a merger, asset or stock sale, or other transaction resulting in a financial benefit to the interested stockholder. The existence of this provision may have an anti-takeover effect with respect to transactions not approved in advance by the board of directors, such as discouraging takeover attempts that might result in a premium over the market price of our common stock.
Undesignated Preferred Stock
The ability to authorize undesignated preferred stock makes it possible for our board of directors to issue preferred stock with voting or other rights or preferences that could impede the success of any attempt to institute a change of control of our company. These and other provisions may have the effect of deterring hostile takeovers or delaying changes in control or management of our company.
Special Stockholder Meetings
Our amended and restated bylaws provide that a special meeting of stockholders may only be called by our board of directors, Chief Executive Officer or, in the absence of a chief executive officer, our President.
Requirements for Advance Notification of Stockholder Nominations and Proposals
Our amended and restated bylaws establish advance notice procedures with respect to stockholder proposals and the nomination of candidates for election as directors, other than nominations made by or at the direction of the board of directors or a committee of the board of directors.
Elimination of Stockholder Action by Written Consent
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws eliminate the right of stockholders to act by written consent without a meeting.
Classified Board; Election and Removal of Directors; Filling Vacancies
Our board of directors is divided into three classes. The directors in each class serve for a three-year term, one class being elected each year by our stockholders. Only one class of directors is elected at each annual meeting of our stockholders, with the other classes continuing for the remainder of their respective three-year terms. Because our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights, our stockholders holding a majority of the shares of common stock outstanding will be able to elect all of our directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides for the removal of any of our directors only for cause and requires a stockholder vote by the holders of at least a 66-2/3% of the voting power of the then outstanding voting stock. Furthermore, any vacancy on our board of directors, however occurring, including a vacancy resulting from an increase in the size of the board, may only be filled by a resolution of the board of directors unless the board of directors determines that such vacancies will be filled by the stockholders. This system of electing and removing directors and filling vacancies may tend to discourage a third party from making a tender offer or otherwise attempting to obtain control of us, because it generally makes it more difficult for stockholders to replace a majority of our directors.
Choice of Forum
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that, unless we consent in writing to the selection of an alternative forum, the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware is the sole and exclusive forum for any derivative action or proceeding brought on our behalf; any action asserting a breach of fiduciary duty; any action asserting a claim against us arising pursuant to the Delaware General Corporation Law, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our amended and restated bylaws or as to which the Delaware General Corporation Law confers jurisdiction to the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware; or any action asserting a claim against us that is governed by the internal affairs doctrine. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation also provides that the
federal district courts of the United States of America are the exclusive forum for the resolution of any complaint asserting a cause of action against us or any of our directors, officers, employees or agents and arising under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
We believe these provisions may benefit us by providing increased consistency in the application of Delaware law and federal securities laws by chancellors and judges, as applicable, particularly experienced in resolving corporate disputes, efficient administration of cases on a more expedited schedule relative to other forums and protection against the burdens of multi-forum litigation. However, these provisions may have the effect of discouraging lawsuits against our directors and officers. The choice of forum provision requiring that the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware or the federal district courts of the United States of America be the exclusive forum for certain actions would not apply to suits brought to enforce any liability or duty created by the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.
Our exclusive forum provision does not relieve us of our duties to comply with the federal securities laws and the rules and regulations thereunder, and our stockholders are not deemed to have waived our compliance with these laws, rules and regulations.
Although our amended and restated certificate of incorporation contains the choice of forum provisions described above, it is possible that a court could find that such a provision is inapplicable for a particular claim or action or that such provision is unenforceable.
Amendment of Certificate of Incorporation Provisions
The amendment of any of the above provisions, except for the provision making it possible for our board of directors to issue undesignated preferred stock, would require approval by a stockholder vote by the holders of at least a 66-2/3% of the voting power of the then outstanding voting stock.
The provisions of the Delaware General Corporation Law, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws could have the effect of discouraging others from attempting hostile takeovers and, as a consequence, they may also inhibit temporary fluctuations in the market price of our common stock that often result from actual or rumored hostile takeover attempts. These provisions may also have the effect of preventing changes in our management. It is possible that these provisions could make it more difficult to accomplish transactions that stockholders may otherwise deem to be in their best interests.
Nasdaq Global Select Market Listing
Our common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “ALGS.”
Transfer Agent and Registrar
The transfer agent and registrar for our common stock is Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Co. The transfer agent and registrar’s address is 1 State Street, 30th Floor, New York, NY 10004.