Description of Common Stock
EX-4.4 2 ntct-ex442020331.htm EX-4.4 Document
DESCRIPTION OF COMMON STOCK
The following description summarizes the most important terms of our capital stock. Because it is only a summary, it does not contain all the information that may be important to you. For a complete description of the matters set forth in this “Description of Capital Stock,” you should refer to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws, which are included as exhibits to our Annual Report on Form 10-K, and to the applicable provisions of Delaware law. Our authorized capital stock consists of 300,000,000 shares of common stock, $0.001 par value per share, and 5,000,000 shares of undesignated preferred stock, $0.001 par value per share. Our board of directors is authorized, without stockholder approval except as required by the listing standards of The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC to issue additional shares of our capital stock.
Each holder of our common stock is entitled to one vote for each share of common stock held on all matters submitted to a vote of stockholders, except as otherwise expressly provided in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or required by applicable law. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation does not provide for cumulative voting for the election of directors.
Dividends and Distributions. Subject to the prior rights of holders of all classes and series of stock at the time outstanding having prior rights as to dividends, the holders of common stock are entitled to receive, when, as and if declared by the board of directors, out of any assets legally available therefor, such dividends as may be declared from time to time by the board of directors.
Liquidation Rights. In the event of our liquidation, dissolution, or winding-up of our company, upon the completion of the distributions required with respect to any series of preferred stock that may then be outstanding, the remaining assets legally available for distribution to stockholders shall be distributed ratably among the holders of common stock.
Our board of directors may, without further action by our stockholders, fix the rights, preferences, privileges, and restrictions of up to an aggregate of 5,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series and authorize their issuance. 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 any series or the designation of such series, any or all of which may be greater than the rights of our common stock. The issuance of our preferred stock could adversely affect the voting power of holders of our common stock and the likelihood that such holders will receive dividend payments and payments upon liquidation. In addition, the issuance of preferred stock could have the effect of delaying, deferring, or preventing a change of control or other corporate action. No shares of preferred stock are currently outstanding, and we have no present plan to issue any shares of preferred stock.
We are subject to Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law, which prohibits a Delaware corporation from engaging in any business combination with any interested stockholder for a period of three years after the date that such stockholder became an interested stockholder, with the following exceptions:
|•||before such date, the board of directors of the corporation approved either the business combination or the transaction that resulted in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder;|
|•||upon closing of the transaction that resulted in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder, the interested stockholder owned at least 85% of the voting stock of the corporation outstanding at the time the transaction began, excluding for purposes of determining the voting stock outstanding (but not the outstanding voting stock owned by the interested stockholder) those shares owned by (i) persons who are directors and also officers and (ii) employee stock plans in which employee participants do not have the right to determine confidentially whether shares held subject to the plan will be tendered in a tender or exchange offer; or|
|•||on or after such date, the business combination is approved by the board of directors and authorized at an annual or special meeting of the stockholders, and not by written consent, by the affirmative vote of at least 66 2/3% of the outstanding voting stock that is not owned by the interested stockholder.|
In general, Section 203 defines business combination to include the following:
|•||any merger or consolidation involving the corporation and the interested stockholder;|
|•||any sale, transfer, pledge, or other disposition of 10% or more of the assets of the corporation involving the interested stockholder;|
|•||subject to certain exceptions, any transaction that results in the issuance or transfer by the corporation of any stock of the corporation to the interested stockholder;|
|•||any transaction involving the corporation that has the effect of increasing the proportionate share of the stock or any class or series of the corporation beneficially owned by the interested stockholder; or|
|•||the receipt by the interested stockholder of the benefit of any loss, advances, guarantees, pledges, or other financial benefits by or through the corporation.|
In general, Section 203 defines an “interested stockholder” as an entity or person who, together with the person’s affiliates and associates, beneficially owns, or within three years prior to the time of determination of interested stockholder status did own, 15% or more of the outstanding voting stock of the corporation.
Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation and Amended and Restated By-law Provisions
Because our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights, our stockholders holding a majority of the voting power of our shares of common stock outstanding are able to elect all of our directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws provide that all stockholder actions must be effected at a duly called meeting of stockholders and not by written consent. A special meeting of stockholders may be called by the majority of our whole board of directors, chair of the board of directors, or our president.
In accordance with our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our board of directors is divided into three classes with staggered three-year terms.
In addition, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws provide that the number of directors constituting our board of directors may be set only by a resolution adopted by a majority vote of our entire board of directors and that directors may be removed without cause only by the holders of at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the shares then entitled to vote at an election of directors or with cause only by the holders of at a majority of the shares then entitled to vote at an election of directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws also provide that vacancies occurring on our board of directors and newly created directorships resulting from an increase in the authorized number of directors, unless
and until filled by our stockholders, may be filled only by vote of a majority of the remaining members of our board of directors, or by a sole remaining director, even though less than a quorum. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws provide that our board of directors is expressly authorized to adopt, amend, or repeal our by-laws, and require a vote of the holders of at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the shares then entitled to vote at an election of directors to amend our by-laws and certain provisions of our certificate of incorporation.
Our amended and restated by-laws provide advance notice procedures for stockholders seeking to bring business before our annual meeting of stockholders or to nominate candidates for election as directors at our annual meeting of stockholders. Our amended and restated by-laws also specify certain requirements regarding the form and content of a stockholder’s notice. These provisions might preclude our stockholders from bringing matters before our annual meeting of stockholders or from making nominations for directors at our annual meeting of stockholders if the proper procedures are not followed. We expect that these provisions may also discourage or deter a potential acquirer from conducting a solicitation of proxies to elect the acquirer’s own slate of directors or otherwise attempting to obtain control of our company.
The foregoing provisions will make it more difficult for our existing stockholders to replace our board of directors as well as for another party to obtain control of us by replacing our board of directors. Since our board of directors has the power to retain and discharge our officers, these provisions could also make it more difficult for existing stockholders or another party to effect a change in management. In addition, the authorization of 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 change our control.
These provisions are intended to enhance the likelihood of continued stability in the composition of our board of directors and its policies and to discourage certain types of transactions that may involve an actual or threatened acquisition of us. These provisions are also designed to reduce our vulnerability to an unsolicited acquisition proposal and to discourage certain tactics that may be used in proxy fights. However, such provisions could have the effect of discouraging others from making tender offers for our shares and may have the effect of deterring hostile takeovers or delaying changes in our control or management. As a consequence, these provisions also may inhibit fluctuations in the market price of our stock that could result from actual or rumored takeover attempts.
Choice of Forum
Our amended and restated by-laws provide that the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware is the exclusive forum for (i) any derivative action or proceeding brought on our behalf; (ii) any action or proceeding asserting a claim of breach of a fiduciary duty owed by any current or former director, officer or other employee of, to us and our stockholders; (iii) any action or proceeding asserting a claim against us or any current or former director or officer or other employee arising pursuant to any provision of the Delaware General Corporation Law, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or our amended and restated by-laws (as either may be amended from time to time); (iv) any action or proceeding to interpret, apply, enforce or determine the validity of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or our amended and restated by-laws (including any right, obligation, or remedy thereunder); (v) or any action or proceeding as to which the Delaware General Corporation Law confers jurisdiction to the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware; or (vi) any action and proceeding asserting a claim against us or any director or officer or other employee governed by the internal affairs doctrine, in all cases to the fullest extent permitted by law and subject to the court’s having personal jurisdiction over the indispensable parties named as defendants. This forum provision does not apply to suits brought to enforce a duty or liability created by the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or any other claim for which the federal courts have exclusive jurisdiction.
Our amended and restated by-laws further provide that unless the we consent in writing to the selection of an alternative forum, to the fullest extent permitted by law, the federal district courts of the United States of America shall be the exclusive forum for the resolution of any complaint asserting a cause of action arising under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
Our amended and restated by-laws further provide that any person or entity holding, owning or otherwise acquiring any interest in any of our securities shall be deemed to have notice of and consented to these forum provisions.
Limitations of Liability and Indemnification
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that we will indemnify our directors and officers, and may indemnify our employees and other agents, to the fullest extent permitted by the Delaware General Corporation Law. However, Delaware law prohibits our amended and restated certificate of incorporation from limiting the liability of our directors for the following:
|•||any breach of the director’s duty of loyalty to us or to our stockholders;|
|•||acts or omissions not in good faith or that involve intentional misconduct or a knowing violation of law;|
|•||unlawful payment of dividends or unlawful stock repurchases or redemptions; and|
|•||any transaction from which the director derived an improper personal benefit.|
If Delaware law is amended to authorize corporate action further eliminating or limiting the personal liability of a director, then the liability of our directors will be eliminated or limited to the fullest extent permitted by Delaware law, as so amended. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation does not eliminate a director’s duty of care and, in appropriate circumstances, equitable remedies, such as injunctive or other forms of nonmonetary relief, remain available under Delaware law. This provision also does not affect a director’s responsibilities under any other laws, such as the federal securities laws or other state or federal laws. Under our amended and restated by-laws, we will also be empowered to enter into indemnification agreements with our directors, officers, employees, and other agents and to purchase insurance on behalf of any person whom we are required or permitted to indemnify.
In addition to the indemnification required by our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, we have entered into indemnification agreements with each of our current directors and officers. These agreements provide for the indemnification of such persons for all reasonable expenses and liabilities incurred in connection with any action or proceeding brought against them by reason of the fact that they are or were serving in such capacity. We believe that these by-law provisions and indemnification agreements are necessary to attract and retain qualified persons as directors, officers, and employees. Furthermore, we have obtained director and officer liability insurance to cover liabilities our directors and officers may incur in connection with their services to us.
The limitation of liability and indemnification provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation may discourage stockholders from bringing a lawsuit against directors for breach of their fiduciary duties. They may also reduce the likelihood of derivative litigation against directors and officers, even though an action, if successful, might benefit us and our stockholders. A stockholder’s investment may be harmed to the extent we pay the costs of settlement and damage awards against directors and officers pursuant to these indemnification provisions. Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, or the Securities Act, may be permitted to our directors, officers, and controlling persons pursuant to the foregoing provisions, or otherwise, we have been advised that, in the opinion of the Securities and Exchange Commission, such indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act, and is, therefore, unenforceable. There is no pending litigation or proceeding naming any of our directors or officers as to which indemnification is being sought, nor are we aware of any pending or threatened litigation that may result in claims for indemnification by any director or officer.