Description of Securities
EX-4.2 2 newt-123119xexh42descripti.htm EXHIBIT 4.2 Exhibit
DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES
As of December 31, 2019, Newtek Business Services Corp. (the “Company,” “we,” “our,” or “us”) had two classes of securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended: (1) our common stock and (2) our debt securities.
Capitalized terms used but not defined herein shall have the meaning ascribed to them in the Annual Report on Form 10-K to which this Description of Securities is attached as an exhibit.
Common Stock, $0.02 par value per share
As of December 31, 2019, the authorized capital stock of Newtek Business Services Corp. consisted of 200,000,000 shares of stock, par value $0.02 per share, all of which are initially designated as common stock. Our common stock is traded on the Nasdaq Global Market under the ticker symbol “NEWT.”
All shares of our common stock have equal rights as to earnings, assets, voting, and distributions and, when they are issued, will be duly authorized, validly issued, fully paid and non-assessable. Distributions may be paid to the holders of our common stock if, as and when authorized by our Board and declared by us out of assets legally available therefor. Shares of our common stock have no preemptive, conversion or redemption rights and are freely transferable, except where their transfer is restricted by 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 our preferred stock, if any preferred stock is outstanding at such time. 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. Except as provided with respect to any other class or series of stock, the holders of our common stock will possess exclusive voting power. There is no cumulative voting in the election of directors, which means that holders of a majority of the outstanding shares of common stock can elect all of our directors, and holders of less than a majority of such shares will be unable to elect any director.
Under our charter, our Board is authorized to classify and reclassify any unissued shares of stock into other classes or series of stock without obtaining stockholder approval. Our charter also provides that the Board, without any action by our stockholders, may amend the charter from time to time to increase or decrease the aggregate number of shares of stock or the number of shares of stock of any class or series that we have authority to issue.
Options and Restricted Stock
From time to time, at the discretion of the Compensation, Corporate Governance and Nominating Committee, the Company intends to grant stock options to the named executive officers and other employees to create a clear and strong alignment between compensation and stockholder return and to enable the named executive officers and other employees to develop and maintain a stock ownership position in the company that will vest over time and act as an incentive for the employee to remain with the Company. Stock options may be granted pursuant to the Newtek Business Services Corp. 2014 Plan.
On May 10, 2016, the SEC issued order for exemptive relief that, with the stockholders’ approval we received on July 27, 2016, allows us to take certain actions that would otherwise be prohibited by the 1940 Act, as
applicable to business development companies. Specifically, the SEC order permits us to (i) issue restricted stock awards to our officers, employees and directors and (ii) issue stock options to our non-employee directors.
We also may in the future request exemptive relief to permit us to grant dividend equivalent right to our option holders. However, there is no assurance that we will receive any such exemptive relief.
Maryland law permits a Maryland corporation to include in its charter a provision limiting the liability of its directors and officers to the corporation and its stockholders for money damages except for liability resulting from (a) actual receipt of an improper benefit or profit in money, property or services or (b) active and deliberate dishonesty established by a final judgment as being material to the cause of action. Our charter contains such a provision which eliminates directors’ and officers’ liability to the maximum extent permitted by Maryland law, subject to the requirements of the 1940 Act.
Limitation on Liability of Directors and Officers; Indemnification and Advance of Expenses
Our charter authorizes us, to the maximum extent permitted by Maryland law and subject to the requirements of the 1940 Act, to indemnify any present or former director or officer or any individual who, while serving as our director or officer and at our request, serves or has served another corporation, real estate investment trust, partnership, joint venture, trust, employee benefit plan or other enterprise as a director, officer, partner or trustee, from and against any claim or liability to which that person may become subject or which that person may incur by reason of his or her service in such capacity and to pay or reimburse their reasonable expenses in advance of final disposition of a proceeding. Our bylaws obligate us, to the maximum extent permitted by Maryland law and subject to the requirements of the 1940 Act, to indemnify any present or former director or officer or any individual who, while serving as our director or officer and at our request, serves or has served another corporation, real estate investment trust, partnership, joint venture, trust, employee benefit plan or other enterprise as a director, officer, partner or trustee and who is made, or threatened to be made, a party to the proceeding by reason of his or her service in that capacity from and against any claim or liability to which that person may become subject or which that person may incur by reason of his or her service in any such capacity and to pay or reimburse his or her reasonable expenses in advance of final disposition of a proceeding. The charter and bylaws also permit us to indemnify and advance expenses to any person who served a predecessor of us in any of the capacities described above and any of our employees or agents or any employees or agents of our predecessor. In accordance with the 1940 Act, we will not indemnify any person for any liability to which such person would be subject by reason of such person’s willful misfeasance, bad faith, gross negligence or reckless disregard of the duties involved in the conduct of his or her office.
Maryland law requires a corporation (unless its charter provides otherwise, which our charter does not) to indemnify a director or officer who has been successful in the defense of any proceeding to which he or she is made, or threatened to be made, a party by reason of his or her service in that capacity. Maryland law permits a corporation to indemnify its present and former directors and officers, among others, against judgments, penalties, fines, settlements and reasonable expenses actually incurred by them in connection with any proceeding to which they may be made a party by reason of their service in those or other capacities unless it is established that (a) the act or omission of the director or officer was material to the matter giving rise to the proceeding and (1) was committed in bad faith or (2) was the result of active and deliberate dishonesty, (b) the director or officer actually received an improper personal benefit in money, property or services or (c) in the case of any criminal proceeding, the director or officer had reasonable cause to believe that the act or omission was unlawful. However, under Maryland law, a
Maryland corporation may not indemnify for an adverse judgment in a suit by or in the right of the corporation or for a judgment of liability on the basis that a personal benefit was improperly received unless, in either case, a court orders indemnification, and then only for expenses. In addition, Maryland law permits a corporation to advance reasonable expenses to a director or officer upon the corporation’s receipt of (a) a written affirmation by the director or officer of his or her good faith belief that he or she has met the standard of conduct necessary for indemnification by the corporation and (b) a written undertaking by him or her or on his or her behalf to repay the amount paid or reimbursed by the corporation if it is ultimately determined that the standard of conduct was not met.
Certain Provisions of the Maryland General Corporation Law and Our Charter and Bylaws
The Maryland General Corporation Law and our charter and bylaws contain provisions that could make it more difficult for a potential acquirer to acquire us by means of a tender offer, proxy contest or otherwise. These provisions are expected to discourage certain coercive takeover practices and inadequate takeover bids and to encourage persons seeking to acquire control of us to negotiate first with our Board. We believe that the benefits of these provisions outweigh the potential disadvantages of discouraging any such acquisition proposals because, among other things, the negotiation of such proposals may improve their terms.
Classified Board of Directors
Our Board is divided into three classes of directors serving staggered three-year terms. The first expires in 2018, the second class expires in 2019, and the third class expires in 2020. Upon expiration of their current terms, directors of each class will be elected to serve for three-year terms and until their successors are duly elected and qualify and each year one class of directors will be elected by the stockholders. A classified board may render a change in control of us or removal of our incumbent management more difficult. We believe, however, that the longer time required to elect a majority of a classified board of directors will help to ensure the continuity and stability of our management and policies.
Election of Directors
Our charter and bylaws provide that the affirmative vote of the holders of a plurality of the outstanding shares of stock entitled to vote in the election of directors cast at a meeting of stockholders duly called and at which a quorum is present will be required to elect a director. Pursuant to our charter our Board may amend the bylaws to alter the vote required to elect directors.
Number of Directors; Vacancies; Removal
Our charter provides that the number of directors will be set only by the Board in accordance with our bylaws. Our bylaws provide that a majority of our entire Board may at any time increase or decrease the number of directors. However, unless our bylaws are amended, the number of directors may never be less than one nor more than twelve. Our charter provides that, at such time as we have at least three independent directors and our common stock is registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, we elect to be subject to the provision of Subtitle 8 of Title 3 of the Maryland General Corporation Law regarding the filling of vacancies on the board of directors. Accordingly, at such time, except as may be provided by the Board in setting the terms of any class or series of preferred stock, any and all vacancies on the Board may be filled only by the affirmative vote of a majority of the remaining directors in office, even if the remaining directors do not constitute a quorum, and any director elected to fill a vacancy will serve for the remainder of the full term of the directorship in which the vacancy occurred and until a successor is elected and qualifies, subject to any applicable requirements of the 1940 Act.
Our charter provides that a director may be removed only for cause, as defined in our charter, and then only by the affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the votes entitled to be cast in the election of directors.
Action by Stockholders
Under the Maryland General Corporation Law, stockholder action can be taken only at an annual or special meeting of stockholders or (unless the charter provides for stockholder action by less than unanimous written consent, which our charter does not) by unanimous written consent in lieu of a meeting. These provisions, combined with the requirements of our bylaws regarding the calling of a stockholder-requested special meeting of stockholders discussed below, may have the effect of delaying consideration of a stockholder proposal until the next annual meeting.
Advance Notice Provisions for Stockholder Nominations and Stockholder Proposals
Our bylaws provide that with respect to an annual meeting of stockholders, nominations of persons for election to the Board and the proposal of business to be considered by stockholders may be made only (a) pursuant to our notice of the meeting, (b) by the Board or (c) by a stockholder who is entitled to vote at the meeting and who has complied with the advance notice procedures of our bylaws. With respect to special meetings of stockholders, only the business specified in our notice of the meeting may be brought before the meeting. Nominations of persons for election to the Board at a special meeting may be made only (1) pursuant to our notice of the meeting, (2) by the Board or (3) provided that the Board has determined that directors will be elected at the meeting, by a stockholder who is entitled to vote at the meeting and who has complied with the advance notice provisions of the bylaws.
The purpose of requiring stockholders to give us advance notice of nominations and other business is to afford our Board a meaningful opportunity to consider the qualifications of the proposed nominees and the advisability of any other proposed business and, to the extent deemed necessary or desirable by our Board, to inform stockholders and make recommendations about such qualifications or business, as well as to provide a more orderly procedure for conducting meetings of stockholders. Although our bylaws do not give our Board any power to disapprove stockholder nominations for the election of directors or proposals recommending certain action, they may have the effect of precluding a contest for the election of directors or the consideration of stockholder proposals if proper procedures are not followed and of discouraging or deterring a third party from conducting a solicitation of proxies to elect its own slate of directors or to approve its own proposal without regard to whether consideration of such nominees or proposals might be harmful or beneficial to us and our stockholders.
Calling of Special Meetings of Stockholders
Our bylaws provide that special meetings of stockholders may be called by our Board and certain of our officers. Additionally, our bylaws provide that, subject to the satisfaction of certain procedural and informational requirements by the stockholders requesting the meeting, a special meeting of stockholders will be called by the secretary of the corporation upon the written request of stockholders entitled to cast not less than a majority of all the votes entitled to be cast at such meeting.
Approval of Extraordinary Corporate Action; Amendment of Charter and Bylaws
Under Maryland law, a Maryland corporation generally cannot dissolve, amend its charter, merge, sell all or substantially all of its assets, engage in a share exchange or engage in similar transactions outside the ordinary course of business, unless approved by the affirmative vote of stockholders entitled to cast at least two-thirds of the votes entitled to be cast on the matter. However, a Maryland corporation may provide in its charter for approval of
these matters by a lesser percentage, but not less than a majority of all of the votes entitled to be cast on the matter. Our charter generally provides for approval of charter amendments and extraordinary transactions by the stockholders entitled to cast at least a majority of the votes entitled to be cast on the matter. Our charter also provides that certain charter amendments, any proposal for our conversion, whether by charter amendment, merger or otherwise, from a closed-end company to an open-end company and any proposal for our liquidation or dissolution requires the approval of the stockholders entitled to cast at least a majority of the votes entitled to be cast on such matter. However, if such amendment or proposal is approved by a majority of our continuing directors (in addition to approval by our Board), such amendment or proposal may be approved by a majority of the votes entitled to be cast on such a matter. The “continuing directors” are defined in our charter as (1) our current directors, (2) those directors whose nomination for election by the stockholders or whose election by the directors to fill vacancies is approved by a majority of our current directors then on the Board or (3) any successor directors whose nomination for election by the stockholders or whose election by the directors to fill vacancies is approved by a majority of continuing directors or the successor continuing directors then in office. In any event, in accordance with the requirements of the 1940 Act, any amendment or proposal that would have the effect of changing the nature of our business so as to cause us to cease to be, or to withdraw our election as, a BDC would be required to be approved by a majority of our outstanding voting securities, as defined under the 1940 Act.
Our charter and bylaws provide that the Board will have the exclusive power to make, alter, amend or repeal any provision of our bylaws. In a Special Meeting of Stockholders held on July 26, 2018, our stockholders rejected a proposal that would have allowed our stockholders to amend our bylaws.
No Appraisal Rights
Except with respect to appraisal rights arising in connection with the Control Share Act discussed below, as permitted by the Maryland General Corporation Law, our charter provides that stockholders will not be entitled to exercise appraisal rights unless a majority of the Board shall determine such rights apply.
Control Share Acquisitions
The Maryland General Corporation Law provides that control shares of a Maryland corporation acquired in a control share acquisition have no voting rights except to the extent approved by a vote of two-thirds of the votes entitled to be cast on the matter (the “Control Share Act”). Shares owned by the acquirer, by officers or by directors who are employees of the corporation are excluded from shares entitled to vote on the matter. Control shares are voting shares of stock which, if aggregated with all other shares of stock owned by the acquirer or in respect of which the acquirer is able to exercise or direct the exercise of voting power (except solely by virtue of a revocable proxy), would entitle the acquirer to exercise voting power in electing directors within one of the following ranges of voting power:
one-tenth or more but less than one-third;
one-third or more but less than a majority; or
a majority or more of all voting power.
The requisite stockholder approval must be obtained each time an acquirer crosses one of the thresholds of voting power set forth above. Control shares do not include shares the acquiring person is then entitled to vote as a result of having previously obtained stockholder approval. A control share acquisition means the acquisition of control shares, subject to certain exceptions.
A person who has made or proposes to make a control share acquisition may compel the Board of the corporation to call a special meeting of stockholders to be held within 50 days of demand to consider the voting rights of the shares. The right to compel the calling of a special meeting is subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, including an undertaking to pay the expenses of the meeting. If no request for a meeting is made, the corporation may itself present the question at any stockholders meeting.
If voting rights are not approved at the meeting or if the acquiring person does not deliver an acquiring person statement as required by the statute, then the corporation may redeem for fair value any or all of the control shares, except those for which voting rights have previously been approved. The right of the corporation to redeem control shares is subject to certain conditions and limitations, including compliance with the 1940 Act. Fair value is determined, without regard to the absence of voting rights for the control shares, as of the date of the last control share acquisition by the acquirer or of any meeting of stockholders at which the voting rights of the shares are considered and not approved. If voting rights for control shares are approved at a stockholders meeting and the acquirer becomes entitled to vote a majority of the shares entitled to vote, all other stockholders may exercise appraisal rights. The fair value of the shares as determined for purposes of appraisal rights may not be less than the highest price per share paid by the acquirer in the control share acquisition.
The Control Share Act does not apply (a) to shares acquired in a merger, consolidation or share exchange if the corporation is a party to the transaction or (b) to acquisitions approved or exempted by the charter or bylaws of the corporation. Our bylaws contain a provision exempting from the Control Share Act any and all acquisitions by any person of our shares of stock. There can be no assurance that such provision will not be amended or eliminated at any time in the future. However, the SEC staff has taken the position that, under the 1940 Act, an investment company may not avail itself of the Control Share Act. As a result, we will amend our bylaws to be subject to the Control Share Act only if the Board determines that it would be in our best interests and, after notification, the SEC staff does not object to our determination that our being subject to the Control Share Act does not conflict with the 1940 Act.
Under Maryland law, “business combinations” between a Maryland corporation and an interested stockholder or an affiliate of an interested stockholder are prohibited for five years after the most recent date on which the interested stockholder becomes an interested stockholder (the “Business Combination Act”). These business combinations include a merger, consolidation, share exchange or, in circumstances specified in the statute, an asset transfer or issuance or reclassification of equity securities. An interested stockholder is defined as:
any person who beneficially owns 10% or more of the voting power of the corporation’s outstanding voting stock; or
an affiliate or associate of the corporation who, at any time within the two-year period prior to the date in question, was the beneficial owner of 10% or more of the voting power of the then outstanding voting stock of the corporation.
A person is not an interested stockholder under this statute if the board of directors approved in advance the transaction by which the stockholder otherwise would have become an interested stockholder. However, in approving a transaction, the board of directors may provide that its approval is subject to compliance, at or after the time of approval, with any terms and conditions determined by the board.
After the five-year prohibition, any business combination between the Maryland corporation and an interested stockholder generally must be recommended by the board of directors of the corporation and approved by the affirmative vote of at least:
80% of the votes entitled to be cast by holders of outstanding shares of voting stock of the corporation; and
two-thirds of the votes entitled to be cast by holders of voting stock of the corporation other than shares held by the interested stockholder with whom or with whose affiliate the business combination is to be effected or held by an affiliate or associate of the interested stockholder.
These super-majority vote requirements do not apply if the corporation’s common stockholders receive a minimum price, as defined under Maryland law, for their shares in the form of cash or other consideration in the same form as previously paid by the interested stockholder for its shares.
The statute permits various exemptions from its provisions, including business combinations that are exempted by the board of directors before the time that the interested stockholder becomes an interested stockholder. Our Board has adopted a resolution that any business combination between us and any other person is exempted from the provisions of the Business Combination Act, provided that the business combination is first approved by Board, including a majority of the directors who are not interested persons as defined in the 1940 Act. This resolution may be altered or repealed in whole or in part at any time; however, our Board will adopt resolutions so as to make us subject to the provisions of the Business Combination Act only if the Board determines that it would be in our best interests and if the SEC staff does not object to our determination that our being subject to the Business Combination Act does not conflict with the 1940 Act. If this resolution is repealed, or the Board does not otherwise approve a business combination, the statute may discourage others from trying to acquire control of us and increase the difficulty of consummating any offer.
Conflict with 1940 Act
Our bylaws provide that, if and to the extent that any provision of the Maryland General Corporation Law, including the Control Share Act (if we amend our bylaws to be subject to such Act) and the Business Combination Act, or any provision of our charter or bylaws conflicts with any provision of the 1940 Act, the applicable provision of the 1940 Act will control.
6.25% Notes due 2023 (the “2023 Notes”); and
5.75% Notes due 2024 (the “2024 Notes,” and together with the 2023 Notes, the “Notes”).
The 2023 Notes
In February 2018, we issued $50,000,000 in aggregate principal amount of 6.25% Notes due 2023 (the “2023 Notes”). In February 2018, we closed on an additional $7.5 million in aggregate principal amount of the 2023 Notes pursuant to a fully-exercised overallotment option granted to the underwriters. The total net proceeds to us, after deducting underwriting discounts and offering expenses, were approximately $55.17 million. As of December 31, 2019, the outstanding principal balance of the 2023 Notes was $57.5 million
The 2023 Notes were issued under a base indenture (the “Base Indenture”), dated September 23, 2015, by and between the Company and U.S. Bank National Association (the “Trustee”), as supplemented by the third supplemental indenture, dated as of February 21, 2018 (the “Third Supplemental Indenture”). The 2023 Notes bear interest at a rate of 6.25% per year payable quarterly on March 1, June 1, September 1, and December 1 of each year, commencing on June 1, 2018. The 2023 Notes will mature on March 1, 2023. The 2023 Notes may be redeemed in whole or in part at any time or from time to time at our option on or after March 1, 2020. We have listed the 2023 Notes on The Nasdaq Global Select Market under the trading symbol “NEWTI.”
The 2024 Notes
In July 2019, we issued $55,000,000 in aggregate principal amount of 5.75% notes due 2024 (the “2024 Notes,” and together with the 2023 Notes, the “Notes”). In August 2019, we closed on an additional $8.25 million in aggregate principal amount of the 2024 Notes pursuant to a fully-exercised overallotment option granted to the underwriters. The total net proceeds to us, after deducting underwriting discounts and offering expenses, were approximately $61.3 million. As of December 31, 2019, the outstanding principal balance of the 2024 Notes was $63.25 million.
The 2024 Notes were issued under a base indenture (the “Base Indenture”), dated September 23, 2015, by and between the Company and U.S. Bank National Association (the “Trustee”), as supplemented by the fourth supplemental indenture, dated as of July 29, 2019 (the “Fourth Supplemental Indenture”, and together with the Base Indenture and the Third Supplemental Indenture, the “Indenture”). The 2024 Notes bear interest at a rate of 6.25% per year payable quarterly on February 1, May 1, August 1, and November 1 of each year, beginning on November 1, 2019. The 2024 Notes will mature on August 1, 2024. The 2024 Notes may be redeemed in whole or in part at any time or from time to time at our option on or after August 1, 2021. We have listed the 2024 Notes on The Nasdaq Global Select Market under the trading symbol “NEWTL.”
The Indenture provides that any debt securities proposed to be sold may be issued under the Indenture in one or more series.
The Indenture does not limit the amount of debt securities that may be issued thereunder from time to time. Debt securities issued under the Indenture, when a single trustee is acting for all debt securities issued under the Indenture, are called the “indenture securities.” The Indenture also provides that there may be more than one trustee thereunder, each with respect to one or more different series of indenture securities. See “— Resignation of Trustee” below. At a time when two or more trustees are acting under the Indenture, each with respect to only certain series, the term “indenture securities” means the one or more series of debt securities with respect to which each respective trustee is acting. In the event that there is more than one trustee under the Indenture, the powers and trust obligations of each trustee will extend only to the one or more series of indenture securities for which it is trustee. If two or more trustees are acting under the Indenture, then the indenture securities for which each trustee is acting would be treated as if issued under separate indentures.
Except as described under “— Events of Default” and “— Merger or Consolidation” below, the Indenture does not contain any provisions that give you protection in the event we issue a large amount of debt or we are acquired by another entity.
We refer you to the applicable prospectus supplement for information with respect to any deletions from, modifications of or additions to the Events of Default or our covenants, as applicable, that are described below, including any addition of a covenant or other provision providing event risk protection or similar protection.
We have the ability to issue indenture securities with terms different from those of indenture securities previously issued and, without the consent of the holders thereof, to reopen a previous issue of a series of indenture securities and issue additional indenture securities of that series unless the reopening was restricted when that series was created.
The 2023 Notes and the 2024 may be redeemed in whole or in part at any time or from time to time at our option on or after March 1, 2020 and August 1, 2021, respectively, upon not less than 30 days nor more than 60 days written notice by mail prior to the date fixed for redemption thereof, at a redemption price of 100% of the outstanding principal amount of the Notes to be redeemed plus accrued and unpaid interest payments otherwise payable thereon for the then-current quarterly interest period accrued to the date fixed for redemption.
You may be prevented from exchanging or transferring the Notes when they are subject to redemption. In case any Notes are to be redeemed in part only, the redemption notice will provide that, upon surrender of such Note, you will receive, without a charge, a new Note or Notes of authorized denominations representing the principal amount of your remaining unredeemed Notes. Any exercise of our option to redeem the Notes will be done in compliance with the 1940 Act.
If we redeem only some of the Notes, the trustee or, with respect to global securities, DTC will determine the method for selection of the particular Notes to be redeemed, in accordance with the Indenture and in accordance with the rules of any national securities exchange or quotation system on which the Notes are listed. Unless we default in payment of the redemption price, on and after the date of redemption, interest will cease to accrue on the Notes called for redemption.
Each Note will be issued in book-entry form and represented by a global security that we deposit with and register in the name of The Depository Trust Company, New York, New York, known as DTC, or its nominee. A global security may not be transferred to or registered in the name of anyone other than the depositary or its nominee, unless special termination situations arise. As a result of these arrangements, the depositary, or its nominee, will be the sole registered owner and holder of all the Notes represented by a global security, and investors will be permitted to own only beneficial interests in a global security. For more information about these arrangements, see “Description of Notes — Book-Entry Procedures” below.
Termination of a Global Security
If a global security is terminated for any reason, interests in it will be exchanged for certificates in non-book-entry form (certificated securities). After that exchange, the choice of whether to hold the certificated Notes directly or in street name will be up to the investor. Investors must consult their own banks or brokers to find out how to have their interests in a global security transferred on termination to their own names, so that they will be holders.
We will pay interest to the person listed in the trustee’s records as the owner of the Notes at the close of business on a particular day in advance of each due date for interest, even if that person no longer owns the Note on the
interest due date. That day, usually about two weeks in advance of the interest due date, is called the “record date.” Because we will pay all the interest for an interest period to the holders on the record date, holders buying and selling the Notes must work out between themselves the appropriate purchase price. The most common manner is to adjust the sales price of the Notes to prorate interest fairly between buyer and seller based on their respective ownership periods within the particular interest period. This prorated interest amount is called “accrued interest.”
Payments on Global Securities
We will make payments on the Notes so long as they are represented by a global security in accordance with the applicable policies of the depositary as in effect from time to time. Under those policies, we will make payments directly to the depositary, or its nominee, and not to any indirect holders who own beneficial interests in the global security. An indirect holder’s right to those payments will be governed by the rules and practices of the depositary and its participants, as described under “Description of Notes — Book-Entry Procedures.”
Payments on Certificated Securities
In the event the Notes become represented by certificated securities, we will make payments on the Notes as follows. We will pay interest that is due on an interest payment date to the holder of the Notes as shown on the trustee’s records as of the close of business on the regular record date. We will make all payments of principal and premium, if any, by check at the office of the applicable trustee in New York, New York and/or at other offices that may be specified in the Indenture or a notice to holders against surrender of the Note.
Alternatively, at our option, we may pay any cash interest that becomes due on the Notes by mailing a check to the holder at his, her or its address shown on the trustee’s records as of the close of business on the regular record date or by transfer to an account at a bank in the United States, in either case, on the due date.
Payment When Offices Are Closed
If any payment is due on the Notes on a day that is not a business day, we will make the payment on the next day that is a business day. Payments made on the next business day in this situation will be treated under the Indenture as if they were made on the original due date. Such payment will not result in a default under the Notes or the Indenture, and no interest will accrue on the payment amount from the original due date to the next day that is a business day.
Book-entry and other indirect holders should consult their banks or brokers for information on how they will receive payments on the Notes.
Events of Default
You will have rights if an Event of Default occurs in respect of the Notes, as described later in this subsection. The term “Event of Default” in respect of the Notes means any of the following:
We do not pay the principal of (or premium, if any, on) any Note on its due date and such default is not cured within 5 days of its due date.
An Event of Default for the Notes does not necessarily constitute an Event of Default for any other series of debt securities issued under the same or any other Indenture. The trustee may withhold notice to the holders of the Notes of any default, except in the payment of principal or interest, if it in good faith considers the withholding of notice to be in the best interests of the holders.
We do not pay interest on any Note when due, and such default is not cured within 30 days of its due date.
We remain in breach of any other covenant with respect to the Notes for 60 days after we receive a written notice of default stating we are in breach. The notice must be sent by either the trustee or holders of at least 25.0% of the principal amount of the Notes.
We file for bankruptcy, or certain other events of bankruptcy, insolvency, or reorganization occur and, in the case of certain orders or decrees entered against us under any bankruptcy law, such order or decree remains undischarged or unstayed for a period of 90 days.
On the last business day of each of twenty-four consecutive calendar months, the Notes have an asset coverage, as defined in the 1940 Act, of less than 100% after giving effect to any exemptive relief granted to us by the SEC.
Remedies if an Event of Default Occurs
If an Event of Default has occurred and is continuing, the trustee or the holders of not less than 25% in principal amount of the Notes may declare the entire principal amount of all the Notes to be due and immediately payable. This is called a declaration of acceleration of maturity. In certain circumstances, a declaration of acceleration of maturity may be canceled by the holders of a majority in principal amount of the Notes if (1) we have deposited with the trustee all amounts due and owing with respect to the Notes (other than principal that has become due solely by reason of such acceleration) and certain other amounts, (2) any other Events of Default have been cured or waived, and (3) we have deposited with the trustee a sum sufficient to pay all sums paid or advanced by the trustee and the reasonable compensation, expenses, disbursements, and advances of the trustee, its agents, and counsel as required under the Indenture in connection with the rescinded Event of Default.
The trustee is not required to take any action under the Indenture at the request of any holders unless the holders offer the trustee protection from expenses and liability reasonably satisfactory to it (called an “indemnity”). If indemnity reasonably satisfactory to the trustee is provided, the holders of a majority in principal amount of the Notes may direct the time, method and place of conducting any lawsuit or other formal legal action seeking any remedy available to the trustee. The trustee may refuse to follow those directions in certain circumstances. No delay or omission in exercising any right or remedy will be treated as a waiver of that right, remedy or Event of Default.
Before you are allowed to bypass the trustee and bring your own lawsuit or other formal legal action or take other steps to enforce your rights or protect your interests relating to the Notes, the following must occur:
you must give the trustee written notice that an Event of Default has occurred and remains uncured;
However, you are entitled at any time to bring a lawsuit for the payment of money due on your Notes on or after the due date.
the holders of at least 25% in principal amount of all the Notes must make a written request that the trustee take action because of the default and must offer the trustee indemnity, security or both reasonably satisfactory to it against the cost and other liabilities of taking that action;
the trustee must not have taken action for 60 days after receipt of the above notice and offer of indemnity and/or security; and
the holders of a majority in principal amount of the Notes must not have given the trustee a direction inconsistent with the above notice during that 60-day period.
Book-entry and other indirect holders should consult their banks or brokers for information on how to give notice or direction to or make a request of the trustee and how to declare or cancel an acceleration of maturity.
Each year, we will furnish to the trustee a written statement of certain of our officers certifying that to their knowledge we are in compliance with the Indenture and the Notes, or else specifying any default.
Waiver of Default
The holders of a majority in principal amount of the Notes may waive any past defaults other than a default:
in the payment of principal (or premium, if any) or interest; or
Merger or Consolidation
in respect of a covenant that cannot be modified or amended without the consent of each holder.
Under the terms of the Indenture, we are generally permitted to consolidate or merge with another entity. We are also permitted to sell all or substantially all of our assets to another entity. However, we may not take any of these actions unless all the following conditions are met:
where we merge out of existence or convey or transfer our assets substantially as an entirety, the resulting entity must agree, in a supplemental indenture, to be legally responsible for our obligations under the Notes and the Indenture;
Modification or Waiver
the merger or sale of assets must not cause a default on the Notes and we must not already be in default (unless the merger or sale would cure the default). For purposes of this no-default test, a default would include an Event of Default that has occurred and has not been cured, as described under “Events of Default” above. A default for this purpose would also include any event that would be an Event of Default if the requirements for giving us a notice of default or our default having to exist for a specific period of time were disregarded; and
we must deliver to the trustee certain certificates and documents and an opinion of counsel.
There are three types of changes we can make to the Indenture and the Notes issued thereunder.
Changes Requiring Your Approval
First, there are changes that we cannot make to your Notes without your specific approval. The following is a list of those types of changes:
change the stated maturity of the principal of or interest on the Notes;
Changes Not Requiring Approval
reduce any amounts due on the Notes;
reduce the amount of principal payable upon acceleration of the maturity of a Note following a default;
change the place or currency of payment on a Note;
impair your right to sue for payment;
reduce the percentage of holders of Notes whose consent is needed to modify or amend the Indenture; and
reduce the percentage of holders of Notes whose consent is needed to waive compliance with certain provisions of the Indenture or to waive certain defaults.
The second type of change does not require any vote by the holders of the Notes. This type is limited to clarifications and certain other changes that would not adversely affect holders of the Notes in any material respect.
Changes Requiring Majority Approval
Any other change to the Indenture and the Notes would require the following approval:
if the change affects only the Notes, it must be approved by the holders of a majority in principal amount of the Notes; and
In each case, the required approval must be given by written consent.
if the change affects more than one series of debt securities issued under the same indenture, it must be approved by the holders of a majority in principal amount of all of the series affected by the change, with all affected series voting together as one class for this purpose.
The holders of a majority in principal amount of any series of debt securities issued under an indenture, voting together as one class for this purpose, may waive our compliance with some of our covenants in that indenture.
However, we cannot obtain a waiver of a payment default or of any of the matters covered by the bullet points included above under “Description of Notes — Modification or Waiver — Changes Requiring Your Approval.”
Further Details Concerning Voting
When taking a vote, we will use the following rules to decide how much principal to attribute to the Notes:
The Notes will not be considered outstanding, and therefore not eligible to vote, if we have deposited or set aside in trust money for their payment or redemption. The Notes will also not be eligible to vote if they have been fully defeased as described later under “Description of Notes — Defeasance — Full Defeasance.”
We will generally be entitled to set any day as a record date for the purpose of determining the holders of the Notes that are entitled to vote or take other action under the Indenture. However, the record date may not be more than 30 days before the date of the first solicitation of holders to vote on or take such action. If we set a record date for a vote or other action to be taken by holders of the Notes, that vote or action may be taken only by persons who are holders of the Notes on the record date and must be taken within eleven months following the record date.
The trustee shall not be deemed to have notice of any default or Event of Default unless (i) written notice of any event which is in fact such a default is received by the trustee at the corporate trust office of the trustee and such notice references the Notes and the Indenture or (ii), in the case of a Default or Event of Default in the payment of the principal of (or premium, if any) or interest, if any, on any Notes, a responsible officer of the trustee has actual knowledge thereof.
Book-entry and other indirect holders should consult their banks or brokers for information on how approval may be granted or denied if we seek to change the Indenture or the Notes or request a waiver.
The following defeasance provisions will be applicable to the Notes. “Defeasance” means that, by depositing with a trustee an amount of cash and/or government securities sufficient to pay all principal and interest, if any, on the Notes when due and satisfying any additional conditions noted below, we will be deemed to have been discharged from our obligations under the Notes. In the event of a “covenant defeasance,” upon depositing such funds and satisfying similar conditions discussed below we would be released from certain covenants under the Indenture relating to the Notes. The consequences to the holders of the Notes would be that, while they would no longer benefit from certain covenants under the Indenture, and while the Notes could not be accelerated for any reason, the holders of Notes nonetheless would be guaranteed to receive the principal and interest owed to them.
Under current U.S. federal income tax law and the Indenture, we can make the deposit described below and be released from some of the restrictive covenants in the Indenture under which the Notes were issued. This is called “covenant defeasance.” In that event, you would lose the protection of those restrictive covenants but would gain the protection of having money and government securities set aside in trust to repay your Notes. In order to achieve covenant defeasance, the following must occur:
Since the Notes are denominated in U.S. dollars, we must deposit in trust for the benefit of all holders of the Notes a combination of cash and U.S. government or U.S. government agency notes or bonds that will, in the written opinion of a nationally recognized accounting firm, generate enough cash to make interest, principal and any other payments on the Notes on their various due dates;
If we accomplish covenant defeasance, you can still look to us for repayment of the Notes if there were a shortfall in the trust deposit or the trustee is prevented from making payment. In fact, if one of the remaining Events of Default occurred (such as our bankruptcy) and the Notes became immediately due and payable, there might be a shortfall. Depending on the event causing the default, you may not be able to obtain payment of the shortfall.
we must deliver to the trustee a legal opinion of our counsel confirming that, under current U.S. federal income tax law, we may make the above deposit without causing you to be taxed on the Notes any differently than if we did not make the deposit;
we must deliver to the trustee a legal opinion of our counsel stating that the above deposit does not require registration by us under the 1940 Act, and a legal opinion and officers’ certificate stating that all conditions precedent to covenant defeasance have been complied with;
defeasance must not result in a breach or violation of, or result in a default under, the Indenture or any of our other material agreements or instruments;
no default or event of default with respect to the Notes shall have occurred and be continuing and no defaults or events of default related to bankruptcy, insolvency, or reorganization shall occur during the next 90 days.
If there is a change in U.S. federal income tax law, as described below, we can legally release ourselves from all payment and other obligations on the Notes (called “full defeasance”) if we put in place the following other arrangements for you to be repaid:
Since the Notes are denominated in U.S. dollars, we must deposit in trust for the benefit of all holders of the Notes a combination of money and U.S. government or U.S. government agency notes or bonds that will, in the written opinion of a nationally recognized accounting firm, generate enough cash to make interest, principal and any other payments on the Notes on their various due dates;
If we ever did accomplish full defeasance, as described above, you would have to rely solely on the trust deposit for repayment of the Notes. You could not look to us for repayment in the unlikely event of any shortfall. Conversely, the trust deposit would most likely be protected from claims of our lenders and other creditors if we ever became bankrupt or insolvent. If your Notes were subordinated as described later under “Description of Notes — Indenture Provisions — Ranking,” such subordination would not prevent the trustee under the Indenture from applying the funds available to it from the deposit referred to in the first bullet of the preceding paragraph to the payment of amounts due in respect of such Notes for the benefit of the subordinated debtholders.
we must deliver to the trustee a legal opinion confirming that there has been a change in current U.S. federal income tax law or an IRS ruling that allows us to make the above deposit without causing you to be taxed on the Notes any differently than if we did not make the deposit. Under current U.S. federal income tax law the deposit and our legal release from the Notes would be treated as though we paid you your share of the cash and notes or bonds at the time the cash and notes or bonds were deposited in trust in exchange for your Notes and you would recognize gain or loss on the Notes at the time of the deposit;
we must deliver to the trustee a legal opinion of our counsel stating that the above deposit does not require registration by us under the 1940 Act, and a legal opinion and officers’ certificate stating that all conditions precedent to defeasance have been complied with;
defeasance must not result in a breach or violation of, or constitute a default under, the Indenture or any of our other material agreements or instruments; and
no default or event of default with respect to the Notes shall have occurred and be continuing and no defaults or events of default related to bankruptcy, insolvency, or reorganization shall occur during the next 90 days.
In addition to any other covenants described in applicable prospectus supplement or accompanying prospectus, as well as standard covenants relating to payment of principal and interest, maintaining an office where payments may be made or securities can be surrendered for payment, payment of taxes by the Company and related matters, the following covenants will apply to the Notes:
We agree that for the period of time during which the Notes are outstanding, we will not violate Section 18(a)(1)(A) as modified by Section 61(a) of the 1940 Act or any successor provisions, but giving effect to any exemptive relief granted to us by the SEC. Currently, these provisions generally prohibit us from incurring additional borrowings, including through the issuance of additional debt securities, unless our asset coverage, as defined in the 1940 Act, equals at least 150% after such borrowings. See “Risk Factors — Because we have received the approval of our stockholders, we are subject to 150% asset coverage beginning after July 26, 2018” in this Form 10-K.
Form, Exchange and Transfer of Certificated Registered Securities
We agree that for the period of time during which Notes are Outstanding, pursuant to Section 18(a)(1)(B) as modified by Section 61(a) of the Investment Company Act or any successor provisions thereto of the Investment Company Act, the Company will not declare any dividend (except a dividend payable in stock of the issuer), or declare any other distribution, upon a class of the capital stock of the Company, or purchase any such capital stock, unless, in every such case, at the time of the declaration of any such dividend or distribution, or at the time of any such purchase, the Company has an asset coverage (as defined in the Investment Company Act) of at least the threshold specified in Section 18(a)(1)(B) as modified by Section 61(a) of the Investment Company Act or any successor provisions thereto of the Investment Company Act, as such obligation may be amended or superseded, after deducting the amount of such dividend, distribution or purchase price, as the case may be, and in each case giving effect to (i) any exemptive relief granted to the Company by the Commission, and (ii) any SEC no-action relief granted by the Commission to another business development company (or to the Company if it determines to seek such similar no-action or other relief) permitting the business development company to declare any cash dividend or distribution notwithstanding the prohibition contained in Section 18(a)(1)(B) as modified by Section 61(a) of the Investment Company Act, as such obligation may be amended or superseded, in order to maintain such business development company’s status as a regulated investment company under Subchapter M of the Code.
If, at any time, we are not subject to the reporting requirements of Sections 13 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act to file any periodic reports with the SEC, we agree to furnish to holders of the Notes and the trustee, for the period of time during which the Notes are outstanding, our audited annual consolidated financial statements, within 90 days of our fiscal year end, and unaudited interim consolidated financial statements, within 45 days of our fiscal quarter end (other than our fourth fiscal quarter). All such financial statements will be prepared, in all material respects, in accordance with applicable U.S. GAAP.
If registered Notes cease to be issued in book-entry form, they will be issued:
only in fully registered certificated form;
Holders may exchange their certificated securities for Notes of smaller denominations or combined into fewer Notes of larger denominations, as long as the total principal amount is not changed and as long as the denomination is equal to or greater than $25.
without interest coupons; and
unless we indicate otherwise, in denominations of $25 and amounts that are multiples of $25.
Holders may exchange or transfer their certificated securities at the office of the trustee. We have appointed the trustee to act as our agent for registering Notes in the names of holders transferring Notes. We may appoint another entity to perform these functions or perform them ourselves.
Holders will not be required to pay a service charge to transfer or exchange their certificated securities, but they may be required to pay any tax or other governmental charge associated with the transfer or exchange. The transfer or exchange will be made only if our transfer agent is satisfied with the holder’s proof of legal ownership.
We may appoint additional transfer agents or cancel the appointment of any particular transfer agent. We may also approve a change in the office through which any transfer agent acts.
If we redeem any of the Notes, we may block the transfer or exchange of those Notes selected for redemption during the period beginning 15 days before the day we mail the notice of redemption and ending on the day of that mailing, in order to determine and fix the list of holders to prepare the mailing. We may also refuse to register
transfers or exchanges of any certificated Notes selected for redemption, except that we will continue to permit transfers and exchanges of the unredeemed portion of any Note that will be partially redeemed.
If registered Notes are issued in book-entry form, only the depositary will be entitled to transfer and exchange the Notes as described in this subsection, since it will be the sole holder of the Notes.
Resignation of Trustee
The trustee may resign or be removed with respect to the Notes provided that a successor trustee is appointed to act with respect to the Notes. In the event that two or more persons are acting as trustee with respect to different series of Indenture securities under the Indenture, each of the trustees will be a trustee of a trust separate and apart from the trust administered by any other trustee.
Indenture Provisions — Ranking
The Notes will be designated as Senior Securities and, therefore, Senior Indebtedness under the Indenture. Senior Indebtedness is defined in the Indenture as the principal of (and premium, if any) and unpaid interest on:
our indebtedness (including indebtedness of others guaranteed by us), whenever created, incurred, assumed or guaranteed, for money borrowed, that we have designated as “Senior Indebtedness” for purposes of the Indenture and in accordance with the terms of the Indenture (including any Indenture securities designated as Senior Indebtedness), and
As unsecured obligations of the Company designated as Senior Indebtedness under the Indenture, the Notes will rank:
renewals, extensions, modifications and refinancings of any of this indebtedness.
pari passu, or equal, with any of our existing and future unsecured indebtedness;
senior to any of our future indebtedness that expressly provides it is subordinated to the Notes;
effectively subordinated, or junior, to all of our existing and future secured indebtedness (including indebtedness that is initially unsecured to which we subsequently grant security), to the extent of the value of the assets securing such indebtedness; and
structurally subordinated, or junior, to all existing and future indebtedness and other obligations of any of our subsidiaries or financing vehicles, if any.