EX-4.11 2 ptmn-ex4_11.htm EX-4.11 EX-4.11
Description of Portman Ridge Finance Corporation’s Registered Securities
References herein to “we,” “us,” “our” and “Company” refer to Portman Ridge Finance Corporation and not to any of its subsidiaries.
The following description of our common stock is a summary and does not purport to be complete. It is subject to and qualified in its entirety by reference to our Certificate of Incorporation, as amended (the “certificate of incorporation”), and our Third Amended and Restated Bylaws, as amended (the “Bylaws”), each of which is incorporated by reference as an exhibit to the Annual Report on Form 10-K of which this Exhibit is a part. We encourage you to read the Certificate of Incorporation, Bylaws and the applicable provisions of the Delaware General Corporation Law (the “DGCL”) for additional information.
Authorized Capital Stock
Our authorized capital stock consists of 20,000,000 shares of common stock, par value $0.01 per share, and 5,000,000 shares of preferred stock, par value $0.01 per share.
Each share of our common stock is entitled to one vote on all matters submitted to a vote of stockholders, including the election of directors. The holders of common stock possess exclusive voting power except (i) as provided with respect to any other class or series of capital stock or (ii) as may be required by the Investment Company Act of 1940 (the “1940 Act”) if we fail to meet certain asset coverage requirements. There is no cumulative voting in the election of directors, or any other matter, which means that holders of a majority of the outstanding shares of common stock are able elect all of our directors, and holders of less than a majority of such shares are unable to elect any director.
Under the terms of our certificate of incorporation, all shares of our common stock have equal rights as to earnings, assets and dividends. The DGCL permits a corporation to declare and pay dividends out of “surplus” or, if there is no “surplus,” out of its net profits for the fiscal year in which the dividend is declared and/or the preceding fiscal year. “Surplus” is defined as the excess of the net assets of the corporation over the amount determined to be the capital of the corporation by its board of directors. The capital of the corporation is typically calculated to be (and cannot be less than) the aggregate par value of all issued shares of capital stock. Net assets equals the fair value of the total assets minus total liabilities. The DGCL also provides that dividends may not be paid out of net profits if, after the payment of the dividend, remaining capital would be less than the capital represented by the outstanding stock of all classes having a preference upon the distribution of assets. Declaration and payment of any dividend is subject to the discretion of our board of directors (“Board of Directors”).
Shares of our common stock have no preemptive, exchange, conversion or redemption rights and are freely transferable, except where their transfer is restricted by U.S. federal and state securities laws or by contract.
In the event of our liquidation, dissolution or winding up, each share of our common stock would be entitled to share ratably in all of our assets that are legally available for distribution after we pay all debts and other liabilities and subject to any preferential rights of holders of any series preferred stock that might be outstanding at that time.
Dissenters’ Rights of Appraisal and Payment
Under the DGCL, with certain exceptions, our stockholders will have appraisal rights in connection with a merger or consolidation of our Company. Pursuant to the DGCL, stockholders who properly request and perfect appraisal rights in connection with such merger or consolidation will have the right to receive payment of the fair value of their shares as determined by the Delaware Court of Chancery.
Stockholders’ Derivative Actions
Under the DGCL, any of our stockholders may bring an action in our name to procure a judgment in our favor, also known as a derivative action, provided that the stockholder bringing the action is a holder of our shares at the time of the transaction to which the action relates or such stockholder’s stock thereafter devolved by operation of law.
Limitation on Liability of Directors and Officers; Indemnification
Under our certificate of incorporation, we will fully indemnify any person who was or is involved in any actual or threatened action, suit or proceeding (whether civil, criminal, administrative or investigative) by reason of the fact that such person is or was one of our directors or officers or is or was serving at our request as a director or officer of another corporation, partnership, limited liability company, joint venture, trust or other enterprise, including service with respect to an employee benefit plan, against all expense, liability and loss (including attorneys’ fees and related disbursements), judgments, fines, excise taxes or penalties under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, as amended, penalties and amounts paid or to be paid in settlement, actually and reasonably incurred by such person in connection with such action, suit or proceeding, except with respect to any matter as to which such person shall have been finally adjudicated in a decision on the merits in any such action, suit or other proceeding not to have acted in good faith in the reasonable belief that such person’s action was in our best interests or to be liable to us or our stockholders by reason of willful misfeasance, bad faith, gross negligence or reckless disregard of the duties involved in the conduct of such
person’s office. Our certificate of incorporation also provides that our directors will not be personally liable for monetary damages to us for breaches of their fiduciary duty as directors, except for a breach of their duty of loyalty to us or our stockholders, for acts or omissions not in good faith in the reasonable belief that the action was in the best interests of the Company or which involve intentional misconduct or a knowing violation of law, for authorization of illegal dividends or redemptions or for any transaction from which the director derived an improper personal benefit. So long as we are regulated under the 1940 Act, the above indemnification and limitation of liability will be limited by the 1940 Act or by any valid rule, regulation or order of the SEC thereunder. The 1940 Act provides, among other things, that a company may not indemnify any director or officer against liability to it or its stockholders to which he or she might otherwise be subject by reason of his or her willful misfeasance, bad faith, gross negligence or reckless disregard of the duties involved in the conduct of his or her office.
Delaware law also provides that indemnification permitted under the law shall not be deemed exclusive of any other rights to which the directors and officers may be entitled under the corporation’s bylaws, any agreement, a vote of stockholders or otherwise.
Our certificate of incorporation permits us to secure insurance on behalf of any person who is or was or has agreed to become a director or officer of our Company or is or was serving at our request as a director or officer of another enterprise for any liability arising out of his or her actions, regardless of whether the DGCL would permit indemnification. We have obtained liability insurance for our officers and directors.
Delaware Law and Certain Certificate of Incorporation and Bylaw Provisions; Anti-Takeover Measures
We are subject to the provisions of Section 203 of the DGCL. In general, the statute prohibits a publicly held Delaware corporation from engaging in a “business combination” with “interested stockholders” for a period of three years after the date of the transaction in which the person became an interested stockholder, unless the business combination is approved in a prescribed manner. A “business combination” includes certain mergers, asset sales and other transactions resulting in a financial benefit to the interested stockholder. Subject to exceptions, an “interested stockholder” is a person who, together with his, her or its affiliates and associates, owns, or within three years did own, 15% or more of the corporation’s voting stock. Our certificate of incorporation and bylaws provide that:
the Board of Directors is divided into three classes, as nearly equal in size as possible, with staggered three-year terms;
directors may be removed only for cause, at a meeting called for that purpose, by the affirmative vote of the holders of 75% of the shares of our capital stock entitled to vote; and
subject to the requirements of the 1940 Act, any vacancy on the Board of Directors, however the vacancy occurs, including a vacancy due to an enlargement of the Board of Directors, may only be filled by vote of the directors then in office.
The classification of our Board of Directors and the limitations on removal of directors and filling of vacancies could have the effect of making it more difficult for a third party to acquire us, or of discouraging a third party from acquiring us.
Our certificate of incorporation and bylaws also provide that:
any action required or permitted to be taken by the stockholders at an annual meeting or special meeting of stockholders may only be taken if it is properly brought before such meeting and may not be taken by written action in lieu of a meeting; and
special meetings of the stockholders may only be called by our Board of Directors, chairman or CEO.
Our bylaws provide that, in order for any matter to be considered “properly brought” before a meeting, a stockholder must comply with requirements regarding advance notice to us. These provisions could delay, until the next stockholders’ meeting, stockholder actions which are favored by the holders of a majority of our outstanding voting securities. These provisions may also discourage another person or entity from making a tender offer for our common stock, because such person or entity, even if it acquired a majority of our outstanding voting securities, would be able to take action as a stockholder (such as electing new directors or approving a merger) only at a duly called stockholders meeting, and not by written consent.
Delaware’s law generally provides that the affirmative vote of a majority of the shares entitled to vote on any matter is required to amend a corporation’s certificate of incorporation or bylaws, unless a corporation’s certificate of incorporation or bylaws requires a greater percentage. Under our certificate of incorporation and bylaws, the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 75% of the shares of our capital stock entitled to vote is required to amend or repeal any of the provisions of our bylaws. Moreover, our bylaws provide that generally, a majority of the shares of our capital stock issued and outstanding and entitled to vote may amend our certificate of incorporation. However, the vote of at least 75% of the shares of our capital stock then outstanding and entitled to vote in the election of directors, voting together as a single class, is required to amend or repeal any provision of the certificate of incorporation pertaining to the Board of Directors, limitation of liability, indemnification, stockholder action or amendments to the certificate of incorporation, to approve a proposal to convert, whether by merger or otherwise, from a closed-end company to an open-end company or to approve a proposal to effect our liquidation or dissolution. However, if such amendment or proposal is approved by at least 75% of our continuing directors (in addition to approval by our Board of Directors), such amendment or proposal may be approved by the stockholders entitled to cast a majority of the votes entitled to be cast on such matter. The “continuing directors” is defined in our certificate of incorporation as our directors at the time of the completion of our initial public offering as well as those directors whose nomination for election by the stockholders or whose election by the directors to fill vacancies is approved by a majority of the continuing directors then on our Board of Directors. The stockholder vote with respect to our certificate of incorporation or bylaws would be in addition to any separate class vote that might in the future be required under the terms of any series preferred stock that might be outstanding at the time any such changes are submitted to stockholders. In addition, our certificate of incorporation permits our Board of Directors to amend or repeal our bylaws by a majority vote.
Transfer Agent and Registrar
The transfer agent and registrar for common stock is American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, LLC. The transfer agent and registrar’s address is 59 Maiden Lane, New York, New York 10038, and its telephone number is ###-###-#### or ###-###-####.
Our common stock is traded on The NASDAQ Global Select Market under the symbol “PTMN.”