Description of the Registrant
EX-4.3 2 ex43descriptionofregistran.htm EX-4.3 Document
DESCRIPTION OF THE REGISTRANT’S SECURITIES
REGISTERED PURSUANT TO SECTION 12 OF THE SECURITIES
EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
Seer, Inc. (the “Company”) has one class of securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended: our Class A common stock, par value $0.00001 per share.
As used in this summary, the terms “Seer,” “the Company,” “we,” “our” and “us” refer to Seer, Inc.
The following is a description of the material terms and provisions relating to our capital stock. The following description is a summary that is not complete and is subject to and qualified in its entirety by reference to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, and to provisions of the Delaware General Corporation Law. Copies of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, each of which may be amended from time to time, are included as exhibits to the Annual Report on Form 10-K to which this description is an Exhibit.
The following description summarizes certain 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 herein, you should refer to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, amended and restated bylaws and amended and restated investors’ rights agreement, which are included as exhibits to the Annual Report on Form 10-K to which this description is an Exhibit, and to the applicable provisions of Delaware law. Our authorized capital stock consists of 105,000,000 shares of capital stock, $0.00001 par value per share, of which:
a.94,000,000 shares are designated as Class A common stock;
b.6,000,000 shares are designated as Class B common stock; and
c.5,000,000 shares are designated as preferred stock.
Pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our board of directors has the authority, without stockholder approval except as required by the listing standards of Nasdaq, to issue additional shares of our Class A common stock.
We have two classes of authorized common stock, Class A common stock and Class B common stock. The rights of the holders of Class A common stock and Class B common stock are identical, except with respect to voting and conversion.
Subject to preferences that may apply to any shares of preferred stock outstanding at the time, the holders of our common stock are entitled to receive dividends out of funds legally available if our board of directors, in its discretion, determines to issue dividends and then only at the times and in the amounts that our board of directors may determine.
Holders of Class A common stock are entitled to one vote for each share held on all matters submitted to a vote of stockholders and holders of our Class B common stock are entitled to ten votes for each share held, except as otherwise required by law. The holders of our Class A common stock and Class B common stock vote together as a single class, unless otherwise required by law.
Delaware law could require either holders of our Class A common stock and our Class B common stock to vote separately as a single class in the following circumstances:
a.if we were to seek to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation to increase or decrease the par value of a class of stock, then that class would be required to vote separately to approve the proposed amendment; and
b.if we were to seek to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation in a manner that alters or changes the powers, preferences, or special rights of a class of stock in a manner that affected its holders adversely, then that class would be required to vote separately to approve the proposed amendment.
Stockholders do not have the ability to cumulate votes for the election of directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide for a classified board of directors consisting of three classes of approximately equal size, each serving staggered three-year terms. Only the directors in one class will be subject to election by a plurality of the votes cast at each annual meeting of stockholders, with the directors in the other classes continuing for the remainder of their respective three-year terms.
No Preemptive or Similar Rights
Our common stock is not entitled to preemptive rights, and is not subject to conversion, redemption or sinking fund provisions.
Right to Receive Liquidation Distributions
If we become subject to a liquidation, dissolution or winding-up, the assets legally available for distribution to our stockholders would be distributable ratably among the holders of our common stock and any participating preferred stock outstanding at that time, subject to prior satisfaction of all outstanding debt and liabilities and the preferential rights of and the payment of liquidation preferences, if any, on any outstanding shares of preferred stock.
Conversion of Class B Common Stock
Each share of Class B common stock is convertible at any time at the option of the holder into one share of Class A common stock. Shares of Class B common stock will automatically convert into shares of Class A common stock upon sale or transfer of such shares, excluding certain transfers permitted by our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. The Class B common stock will also automatically convert into shares of Class A common stock on December 8, 2025.
Fully Paid and Non-Assessable
In connection with this offering, our legal counsel will opine that the shares of our Class A common stock to be issued in this offering will be fully paid and non-assessable.
No shares of our preferred stock are outstanding. Pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our board of directors has the authority, subject to limitations prescribed by Delaware law, to issue preferred stock in one or more series, to establish from time to time the number of shares to be included in each series and to fix the designation, powers, preferences and rights of the shares of each series and any of its qualifications, limitations or restrictions, in each case without further vote or action by our stockholders. Our board of directors can also increase or decrease the number of shares of any series of preferred stock, but not below the number of shares of that series then outstanding, without any further vote or action by our stockholders. Our board of directors may authorize the issuance of preferred stock with voting or conversion rights that could adversely affect the voting power or other rights of the holders of our common stock. The issuance of preferred stock, while providing flexibility in connection with possible acquisitions and other corporate purposes, could, among other things, have the effect of delaying, deferring or preventing a change in control of our company and might adversely
affect the market price of our common stock and the voting and other rights of the holders of our common stock. We have no current plan to issue any shares of preferred stock.
Certain provisions of Delaware law, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, which are summarized below, may have the effect of delaying, deferring or discouraging another person from acquiring control of us. They are also designed, in part, to encourage persons seeking to acquire control of us to negotiate first with our board of directors. We believe that the benefits of increased protection of our potential ability to negotiate with an unfriendly or unsolicited acquirer outweigh the disadvantages of discouraging a proposal to acquire us because negotiation of these proposals could result in an improvement of their terms.
We are governed by the provisions of Section 203 of the Delaware General Corporation Law. In general, Section 203 prohibits a public Delaware corporation from engaging in a “business combination” with an “interested stockholder” for a period of three years after the date of the transaction in which the person became an interested stockholder, unless:
a.the transaction was approved by the board of directors prior to the time that the stockholder became an interested stockholder;
b.upon consummation of the transaction which 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 commenced, excluding shares owned by directors who are also officers of the corporation and shares owned by 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
c.at or subsequent to the time the stockholder became an interested stockholder, the business combination was 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 two-thirds of the outstanding voting stock which is not owned by the interested stockholder.
In general, Section 203 defines a “business combination” to include mergers, asset sales and other transactions resulting in financial benefit to a stockholder and an “interested stockholder” as a person who, together with affiliates and associates, owns, or within three years did own, 15% or more of the corporation’s outstanding voting stock. These provisions may have the effect of delaying, deferring or preventing changes in control of our company.
Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation and Amended and Restated Bylaw Provisions
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws include a number of provisions that could deter hostile takeovers or delay or prevent changes in control of our board of directors or management team, including the following:
Board of Directors Vacancies. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws authorize only our board of directors to fill vacant directorships, including newly created seats. In addition, the number of directors constituting our board of directors are permitted to be set only by a resolution adopted by a majority vote of our entire board of directors. These provisions would prevent a stockholder from increasing the size of our board of directors and then gaining control of our board of directors by filling the resulting vacancies with its own nominees. This will make it more difficult to change the composition of our board of directors and will promote continuity of management.
Classified Board. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide that our board of directors is classified into three classes of directors. A third party may be discouraged from making a tender offer or otherwise attempting to obtain control of us as it is more difficult and time consuming for stockholders to replace a majority of the directors on a classified board of directors.
Stockholder Action; Special Meeting of Stockholders. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that our stockholders may not take action by written consent, but may only take action at annual or special meetings of our stockholders. As a result, a holder controlling a majority of our capital stock would not be able to amend our amended and restated bylaws or remove directors without holding a meeting of our stockholders called in accordance with our amended and restated bylaws. Our amended and restated bylaws further provide that special meetings of our stockholders may be called only by a majority of our board of directors, the chairperson of our board of directors, our Chief Executive Officer or our President, thus prohibiting a stockholder from calling a special meeting. These provisions might delay the ability of our stockholders to force consideration of a proposal or for stockholders controlling a majority of our capital stock to take any action, including the removal of directors.
Advance Notice Requirements for Stockholder Proposals and Director Nominations. Our amended and restated bylaws 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 bylaws 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.
No Cumulative Voting. The Delaware General Corporation Law provides that stockholders are not entitled to cumulate votes in the election of directors unless a corporation’s certificate of incorporation provides otherwise. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation does not provide for cumulative voting.
Directors Removed Only for Cause. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that stockholders may remove directors only for cause.
Amendment of Charter Provisions. Any amendment of the above provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation would require approval by holders of at least a two thirds majority of our then outstanding capital stock.
Issuance of Undesignated Preferred Stock. Our board of directors has the authority, without further action by our stockholders, to issue up to 5,000,000 shares of undesignated preferred stock with rights and preferences, including voting rights, designated from time to time by our board of directors. The existence of authorized but unissued shares of preferred stock would enable our board of directors to render more difficult or to discourage an attempt to obtain control of us by means of a merger, tender offer, proxy contest or other means.
Exclusive Forum. Our amended and restated bylaws provide that, unless we consent to the selection of an alternative forum, the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware shall be the sole and exclusive forum for (i) any derivative action or proceeding under Delaware statutory or common law brought on our behalf, (ii) any action asserting a claim of breach of fiduciary duty, (iii) any action asserting a claim arising pursuant to the Delaware General Corporation Law, (iv) any action regarding our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or amended and restated bylaws, or (v) any action asserting a claim against us that is governed by the internal affairs doctrine, except, in each case, any claim (A) as to which such court determines that there is an indispensable party not subject to the jurisdiction of such court (and the indispensable party does not consent to the personal jurisdiction of such court within 10 days following such determination), (B) which is vested in the exclusive jurisdiction of a court or forum other than such court, or (C) for which such court does not have subject matter jurisdiction. Section 22 of the Securities Act creates concurrent jurisdiction for federal and state courts over all Securities Act actions. Accordingly, both state and federal courts have jurisdiction to entertain such claims. To prevent having to litigate claims in multiple jurisdictions and the threat of inconsistent or contrary rulings by different courts, among other
considerations, our amended and restated bylaws also provide that the federal district courts of the United States will be the exclusive forum for resolving any complaint asserting a cause of action arising under the Securities Act. Section 27 of the Exchange Act creates exclusive federal jurisdiction over all suits brought to enforce any duty or liability created by the Exchange Act or the rules and regulations thereunder. As a result, the exclusive forum provision will not apply to actions arising under the Exchange Act or the rules and regulations thereunder. Although our amended and restated bylaws contain the exclusive forum provision described above, to the extent the exclusive forum provision restricts the courts in which claims arising under the Securities Act may be brought, there is uncertainty as to whether a court would enforce such a provision, and the enforceability of similar choice of forum provisions in other companies’ charter documents has been challenged in legal proceedings. We note that investors cannot waive compliance with the federal securities laws and the rules and regulations thereunder.
Any person or entity purchasing or otherwise acquiring any interest in our securities shall be deemed to have notice of and consented to this provision. Although we believe these provisions benefit us by providing increased consistency in the application of Delaware law for the specified types of actions and proceedings, the provisions may have the effect of discouraging lawsuits against us or our directors and officers.
Transfer Agent and Registrar
The transfer agent and registrar for our Class A common stock is Computershare Trust Company, N.A. The transfer agent and registrar’s address is 250 Royal Street, Canton, Massachusetts 02021.
Limitations of Liability and Indemnification
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation contains provisions that limit the liability of our directors for monetary damages to the fullest extent permitted by the Delaware General Corporation Law. Consequently, our directors will not be personally liable to us or our stockholders for monetary damages for any breach of fiduciary duties as directors, except liability for the following:
a.any breach of their duty of loyalty to our company or our stockholders;
b.any act or omission not in good faith or that involves intentional misconduct or a knowing violation of law;
c.unlawful payments of dividends or unlawful stock repurchases or redemptions as provided in Section 174 of the Delaware General Corporation Law; or
d.any transaction from which they derived an improper personal benefit.
Any amendment to, or repeal of, these provisions will not eliminate or reduce the effect of these provisions in respect of any act, omission or claim that occurred or arose prior to that amendment or repeal. If the Delaware General Corporation Law is amended to provide for further limitations on the personal liability of directors of corporations, then the personal liability of our directors will be further limited to the greatest extent permitted by the Delaware General Corporation Law.
In addition, our amended and restated bylaws provide that we will indemnify, to the fullest extent permitted by law, any person who is or was a party or is threatened to be made a party to any action, suit or proceeding by reason of the fact that they are or were one of our directors or officers or is or was serving at our request as a director or officer of another corporation, partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise. Our amended and restated bylaws provide that we may indemnify to the fullest extent permitted by law any person who is or was a party or is threatened to be made a party to any action, suit or proceeding by reason of the fact that they are or were one of our employees or agents or is or was serving at our request as an employee or agent of another corporation, partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise. Our amended and restated bylaws also provide that we must advance expenses incurred by or on behalf of a director or officer in advance of the final disposition of any action or proceeding, subject to limited exceptions.
Further, we have entered into or will enter into indemnification agreements with each of our directors and executive officers that may be broader than the specific indemnification provisions contained in the Delaware General Corporation Law. These indemnification agreements require us, among other things, to indemnify our directors and executive officers against liabilities that may arise by reason of their status or service. These indemnification agreements also require us to advance all expenses incurred by the directors and executive officers in investigating or defending any such action, suit or proceeding. We believe that these agreements are necessary to attract and retain qualified individuals to serve as directors and executive officers.
The limitation of liability and indemnification provisions that are included in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, amended and restated bylaws and in indemnification agreements that we have entered into or will enter into with our directors and executive officers may discourage stockholders from bringing a lawsuit against our directors and executive officers for breach of their fiduciary duties. They may also reduce the likelihood of derivative litigation against our directors and executive officers, even though an action, if successful, might benefit us and other stockholders. Further, a stockholder’s investment may be adversely affected to the extent that we pay the costs of settlement and damage awards against directors and executive officers as required by these indemnification provisions. At present, we are not aware of any pending litigation or proceeding involving any person who is or was one of our directors, officers, employees or other agents or is or was serving at our request as a director, officer, employee or agent of another corporation, partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise, for which indemnification is sought, and we are not aware of any threatened litigation that may result in claims for indemnification.
We have obtained insurance policies under which, subject to the limitations of the policies, coverage is provided to our directors and executive officers against loss arising from claims made by reason of breach of fiduciary duty or other wrongful acts as a director or executive officer, including claims relating to public securities matters, and to us with respect to payments that may be made by us to these directors and executive officers pursuant to our indemnification obligations or otherwise as a matter of law.
Certain of our non-employee directors may, through their relationships with their employers, be insured or indemnified against certain liabilities incurred in their capacity as members of our board of directors.
The underwriting agreement will provide for indemnification by the underwriters of us and our officers and directors for certain liabilities arising under the Securities Act or otherwise.
Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act may be permitted to directors, officers or persons controlling our company pursuant to the foregoing provisions, we have been informed that, in the opinion of the SEC, such indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act and is therefore unenforceable.
Our Class A common stock is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market under the symbol “SEER.”