Description of the Registrant's Securities
DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES REGISTERED UNDER
SECTION 12 OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
The following description of the common stock, $0.0001 par value per share (the “Common Stock”), of Surface Oncology, Inc. (“us,” “our,” “we” or the “Company”), which is the only security of the Company registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), summarizes certain information regarding the Common Stock in our certificate of incorporation, our amended and restated by-laws and applicable provisions of Delaware corporate law, and is qualified by reference to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws, which are incorporated by reference as Exhibit 3.1 and Exhibit 3.2, respectively, to the Annual Report on Form 10-K.
Our authorized capital stock consists of 150,000,000 shares of common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, and 5,000,000 shares of preferred stock, par value $0.0001 per share.
Annual Meeting. Annual meetings of our stockholders are held on the date designated in accordance with our amended and restated by-laws. Written notice must be mailed to each stockholder entitled to vote not less than ten nor more than 60 days before the date of the meeting. The presence in person or by proxy of the holders of record of a majority of our issued and outstanding shares entitled to vote at such meeting constitutes a quorum for the transaction of business at meetings of the stockholders. Special meetings of the stockholders may be called for any purpose only by the board of directors pursuant to a resolution approved by the affirmative vote of a majority of the directors then in office. Except as may be otherwise provided by applicable law, our certificate of incorporation or our amended and restated by-laws, all elections of directors shall be decided by a plurality, and all other questions shall be decided by a majority, of the votes cast by stockholders entitled to vote thereon at a duly held meeting of stockholders at which a quorum is present.
Voting Rights. Holders of common stock are entitled to one vote for each share held of record on all matters to be voted upon by stockholders and do not have cumulative voting rights.
Dividends. Subject to the rights, powers and preferences of any outstanding preferred stock that we may designate and issue in the future, and except as provided by law or in our certificate of incorporation, dividends may be declared and paid or set aside for payment on the Common Stock out of legally available assets or funds when and as declared by our board of directors.
Liquidation, Dissolution and Winding Up. Subject to the rights, powers and preferences of any outstanding preferred stock that we may designate and issue in the future, in the event of our liquidation, dissolution or winding up, our net assets will be distributed pro rata to the holders of Common Stock.
Other Rights. Holders of Common Stock have no preemptive, subscription, redemption or conversion rights. The rights, preferences and privileges of holders of Common Stock are subject to and may be adversely affected by the rights of the holders of shares of any series of preferred stock that we may designate and issue in the future. Holders of Common Stock are not required to make additional capital contributions.
Our board of directors has the authority to designate and issue up to 5,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series. The authorized shares of our preferred stock are available for issuance without further action by our stockholders, unless such action is required by applicable law or the rules of any stock exchange on which our
securities may be listed. Our board of directors may also designate the rights, powers, preferences and the relative, participating, optional or other special rights and any qualifications, limitations and restrictions of the shares of each series of preferred stock.
No shares of preferred stock are outstanding as of the date of our Annual Report on Form 10-K with which this Exhibit 4.3 is filed as an exhibit.
Provisions of Our Certificate of Incorporation and Amended and Restated By-laws and Delaware Law That May Have Anti-Takeover Effects
The provisions of Delaware law and our certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws could discourage or make it more difficult to accomplish a proxy contest or other change in our management or the acquisition of control by a holder of a substantial amount of our voting stock. It is possible that these provisions could make it more difficult to accomplish, or could deter, transactions that stockholders may otherwise consider to be in their best interests or in our best interests. These provisions are intended to enhance the likelihood of continuity and stability in the composition of our board of directors and in the policies formulated by the board of directors and to discourage certain types of transactions that may involve an actual or threatened change of our control. These provisions are designed to reduce our vulnerability to an unsolicited acquisition proposal and to discourage certain tactics that may be used in proxy fights. Such provisions also may have the effect of preventing changes in our management.
Board of Directors. Our certificate of incorporation and amended and restated by-laws provide for a board of directors divided as nearly equally as possible into three classes. Each class is elected to a term expiring at the annual meeting of stockholders held in the third year following the year of such election. The number of directors comprising our board of directors is fixed from time to time by the board of directors.
Removal of Directors by Stockholders. Our certificate of incorporation provides that members of our board of directors may only be removed for cause by a vote of the holders of at least seventy-five percent (75%) of the outstanding shares entitled to vote on the election of the directors.
Issuance of Preferred Stock. Our board of directors is authorized, without further action by our stockholders, to issue up to 5,000,000 shares of preferred stock in one or more series, and to fix the designations, powers, preferences and the relative, participating, optional or other special rights, and any qualifications, limitations and restrictions of the shares of each series of preferred stock. The issuance of preferred stock could impede the completion of a merger, tender offer or other takeover attempt.
Stockholder Nomination of Directors. Our amended and restated by-laws provide that a stockholder must notify us in writing of any stockholder nomination of a director not earlier than 5:00 p.m., Eastern Time, on the 120th day and not later than 5:00 p.m., Eastern Time, on the 90th day prior to the first anniversary of the preceding year’s annual meeting; provided, that if the date of the annual meeting is advanced by more than 30 days before such anniversary date, delayed by more than 60 days after such anniversary date or if no annual meeting were held in the prior year, notice by the stockholder to be timely must be so delivered not later than 5:00 p.m., Eastern Time, on the later of (x) the 90th day prior to the date of such meeting and (y) the 10th day following the day on which public announcement of the date of such annual meeting is first made by us.
No Action By Written Consent. Our certificate of incorporation provides that our stockholders may not act by written consent and may only act at duly called meetings of stockholders.
Delaware Business Combination Statute. Section 203 of the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware, which we refer to as the DGCL, is applicable to us. Section 203 of the DGCL restricts some types of transactions and business combinations between a corporation and a 15% stockholder. A 15% stockholder is generally
considered by Section 203 to be a person owning 15% or more of the corporation’s outstanding voting stock. Section 203 refers to a 15% stockholder as an “interested stockholder.” Section 203 restricts these transactions for a period of three years from the date the stockholder acquires 15% or more of our outstanding voting stock. With some exceptions, unless the transaction is approved by the board of directors and the holders of at least two-thirds of the outstanding voting stock of the corporation, Section 203 prohibits significant business transactions such as:
a merger with, disposition of significant assets to or receipt of disproportionate financial benefits by the interested stockholder, and
any other transaction that would increase the interested stockholder’s proportionate ownership of any class or series of our capital stock.
The shares held by the interested stockholder are not counted as outstanding when calculating the two-thirds of the outstanding voting stock needed for approval.
The prohibition against these transactions does not apply if:
prior to the time that any stockholder became an interested stockholder, the board of directors approved either the business combination or the transaction in which such stockholder acquired 15% or more of our outstanding voting stock, or
the interested stockholder owns at least 85% of our outstanding voting stock as a result of a transaction in which such stockholder acquired 15% or more of our outstanding voting stock. Shares held by persons who are both directors and officers or by some types of employee stock plans are not counted as outstanding when making this calculation.
Exclusive Forum Selection. Our restated certificate of incorporation provides that the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware shall be the sole and exclusive forum for (1) any derivative action or proceeding brought on behalf of our company, (2) any action asserting a claim of breach of a fiduciary duty owed by any of our directors, officers, or other employees to our company or our stockholders, (3) any action asserting a claim against our company arising pursuant to any provision of the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware or our certificate of incorporation or amended and restated bylaws, or (4) any action asserting a claim against our company governed by the internal affairs doctrine. Our bylaws further provide that the United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts will be the exclusive forum for resolving any complaint asserting a cause of action arising under the Securities Act. This exclusive forum provision would not apply to suits brought to enforce a duty or liability created by the Exchange Act, which provides for exclusive jurisdiction of the federal courts. It could apply, however, to a suit that falls within one or more of the categories enumerated in the exclusive forum provision and asserts claims under the Securities Act, inasmuch as Section 22 of the Securities Act creates concurrent jurisdiction for federal and state courts over all suits brought to enforce any duty or liability created by the Securities Act or the rules and regulations thereunder. There is uncertainty as to whether a court would enforce such provision with respect to claims under the Securities Act, and our stockholders will not be deemed to have waived our compliance with the federal securities laws and the rules and regulations thereunder.