Description of the Registrants Securities Registered Pursuant to Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
DESCRIPTION OF THE REGISTRANT’S SECURITIES
REGISTERED PURSUANT TO SECTION 12 OF THE SECURITIES
EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
Theravance Biopharma, Inc. (“we,” “our,” “us,” or the “Company”) has one class of securities registered under Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended: our ordinary shares. The following description summarizes the most important terms of our share capital. Because it is only a summary, it does not contain all the information that may be important to you. For a complete description, you should refer to our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association and form of rights agreement, each previously filed with the SEC and incorporated by reference as an exhibit to the Annual Report on Form 10-K of which this Exhibit 4.10 is a part, and the applicable provisions of the Companies Law, 2016 Revision, as amended (the “Companies Law”).
DESCRIPTION OF SHARE CAPITAL
We are authorized to issue 200,000,000 ordinary shares, par value $0.00001 per share, and 230,000 preferred shares, par value $0.00001 per share.
Our ordinary shares are listed on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol “TBPH.” The transfer agent and registrar for our ordinary shares is Computershare, Stock Transfer Administration, 2335 Alaska Avenue, El Segundo CA 90245.
Meetings of Shareholders
Subject to our regulatory requirements, an annual general meeting and any extraordinary general meeting shall be called by not less than ten days’ nor more than 60 days’ notice. Notice of every general meeting will be given to all of our shareholders, our directors and our principal external auditors. Extraordinary general meetings may be called only by the chairman of our board of directors, the chief executive officer or a majority of our board of directors, and may not be called by any other person.
Alternatively, subject to applicable regulatory requirements, a meeting will be deemed to have been duly called if it is so agreed (i) in the case of a meeting called as an annual general meeting, by all of our shareholders (or their proxies) entitled to attend and vote at the meeting, or (ii) in the case of an extraordinary meeting, by a majority in number of our shareholders (or their proxies) having a right to attend and vote at the meeting, being a majority together holding not less than 95% of the voting shares.
At any general meeting, shareholders entitled to vote and present in person or by proxy that represent not less than a majority of our issued and outstanding voting shares will constitute a quorum. No business may be transacted at any general meeting unless a quorum is present at the commencement of business.
A corporation being a shareholder shall be deemed for the purpose of our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association to be present in person if represented by its duly authorized representative being the person appointed by resolution of the directors or other governing body of such corporation to act as its representative at the relevant general meeting or at any relevant general meeting of any class of our shareholders. Such duly authorized representative shall be entitled to exercise the same powers on behalf of the corporation which he represents as that corporation could exercise if it were an individual shareholder.
The quorum for a separate general meeting of the holders of a separate class of shares is described in “Modification of Rights” below.
Voting Rights Attaching to the Shares
Subject to any special rights or restrictions as to voting then attached to any shares, at any general meeting every shareholder who is present in person or by proxy (or, in the case of a shareholder being a corporation, by its duly authorized representative) shall have one vote per ordinary share. The holders of preferred shares shall have limited voting rights as set out in our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association.
No shareholder shall be entitled to vote or be deemed to be part of a quorum, in respect of any share, unless such shareholder is registered as our shareholder at the applicable record date for that meeting and all calls or installments due by such shareholder to us, if any, have been paid. If a clearing house or depository (or its nominee(s)) is our shareholder, it may authorize such person or persons as it thinks fit to act as its representative(s) at any meeting or at any meeting of any class of shareholders, provided that, if more than one person is so authorized, the authorization shall specify the number and class of shares in respect of which each such person is so authorized. A person authorized pursuant to this provision is entitled to exercise the same powers on behalf of the recognized clearing house or depositary (or its nominee(s)) as if such person was the registered holder of our shares held by that clearing house or depositary (or its nominee(s)), including the right to vote individually on a show of hands.
While there is nothing under the laws of the Cayman Islands that specifically prohibits or restricts the creation of cumulative voting rights for the election of our directors, unlike the requirement under Delaware law that cumulative voting for the election of directors is permitted only if expressly authorized in the certificate of incorporation, it is not a concept that is accepted as a common practice in the Cayman Islands, and we have made no provisions in our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association to allow cumulative voting for such elections.
Protection of Minority Shareholders
The Grand Court of the Cayman Islands may, on the application of shareholders holding not less than one fifth of our shares in issue, appoint an inspector to examine our affairs and report thereon in a manner as the Grand Court shall direct.
Any shareholder may petition the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands which may make a winding up order, if the court is of the opinion that it is just and equitable that we should be wound up.
Claims against us by our shareholders must, as a general rule, be based on the general laws of contract or tort applicable in the Cayman Islands or their individual rights as shareholders as established by our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association.
Our Cayman Islands counsel, Maples and Calder, is not aware of any reported class action having been brought in a Cayman Islands court. Derivative actions have been brought in the Cayman Islands courts, and the Cayman Islands courts have confirmed the availability for such actions. In most cases, the company will be the proper plaintiff in any claim based on a breach of duty owed to it, and a claim against (for example) the company’s officers or directors usually may not be brought by a shareholder. However, based on English authorities, which would in all likelihood be of persuasive authority and be applied by a court in the Cayman Islands, exceptions to the foregoing principle apply in circumstances in which:
A shareholder may have a direct right of action against the company where the individual rights of that shareholder have been infringed or are about to be infringed.
There are no pre-emption rights applicable to the issue of new shares under either Cayman Islands law or our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association.
Subject to any special rights, privileges or restrictions as to the distribution of available surplus assets on liquidation applicable to any class or classes of shares (i) if we are wound up and the assets available for distribution among our shareholders are more than sufficient to repay the whole of the capital paid up at the commencement of the winding up, the excess shall be distributed pari passu among our shareholders in proportion to the amount paid up at the commencement of the winding up on the shares held by them, respectively, and (ii) if we are wound up and the assets available for distribution among our shareholders as such are insufficient to repay the whole of the paid-up capital, those assets shall be distributed so that, as nearly as may be, the losses shall be borne by our shareholders in proportion to the capital paid up at the commencement of the winding up on the shares held by them, respectively.
If we are wound up, the liquidator may with the sanction of an ordinary resolution and any other sanction required by the Companies Law, divide among our shareholders in specie or kind the whole or any part of our assets (whether they shall consist of assets of the same kind or not) and may, for such purpose, set such value as the liquidator deems fair upon any assets to be divided and may determine how such division shall be carried out as between the shareholders or different classes of shareholders. The liquidator may also, with the sanction of an ordinary resolution, vest any part of these assets in trustees upon such trusts for the benefit of our shareholders as the liquidator shall think fit, but so that no shareholder will be compelled to accept any assets, shares or other securities upon which there is a liability.
Modification of Rights
Except with respect to share capital (as described below), alterations to our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association may only be made by special resolution of no less than two-thirds of votes cast at a meeting of our shareholders at which a quorum is present.
Subject to the Companies Law and our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association, all or any of the special rights attached to shares of any class (unless otherwise provided for by the terms of issue of the shares of that class) may be varied, modified or abrogated with the sanction of a resolution passed by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the votes cast passed at a separate meeting of the holders of the shares of that class at which a quorum is present. The provisions of our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association relating to general meetings shall apply similarly to every such separate general meeting, but so that the quorum for the purposes of any such separate general meeting or at its adjourned meeting shall be a person or persons together holding (or represented by proxy) not less than a majority in par value of the issued shares of that class, every holder of shares of the class shall be entitled on a poll to one vote for every such share held by such holder and that any holder of shares of that class present in person or by proxy may demand a poll.
The special rights conferred upon the holders of any class of shares shall not, unless otherwise expressly provided in the rights attaching to or the terms of issue of such shares, be deemed to be varied by the creation or issue of further shares that rank higher in priority or with the same rights and privileges.
Alteration of Capital
We may from time to time by ordinary resolution:
We may, by special resolution, subject to any confirmation or consent required by the Companies Law, reduce our share capital or any capital redemption reserve in any manner authorized by law.
Transfer of Shares
Subject to any applicable restrictions set forth in our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association, any of our shareholders may transfer all or a portion of their shares by an instrument of transfer in the usual or common form or in a form prescribed by the Nasdaq Global Market or in any other form which our directors may approve. Our directors may, in their absolute discretion, decline to register any transfer of shares, subject to any applicable requirements imposed from time to time by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Nasdaq Global Market or any recognized stock exchange on which our securities are listed. If our directors refuse to register a transfer, they shall, within two months after the date on which the instrument of transfer was lodged, send to each of the transferor and the transferee notice of such refusal.
The registration of transfers may be suspended and the register closed at such times and for such periods as our directors may from time to time determine; provided, however, that registration shall not be suspended for more than forty-five days in any year.
We are empowered by the Companies Law and our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association to purchase our own shares, subject to certain restrictions. Our directors may only exercise this power on our behalf, subject to the Companies Law, our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association and to any applicable requirements imposed from time to time by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Nasdaq Global Market or any recognized stock exchange on which our securities are listed.
Subject to the Companies Law, we may declare dividends in any currency to be paid to our shareholders but no dividend shall be declared in excess of the amount recommended by our directors. Dividends may be declared and paid out of our profits, realized or unrealized, or from any reserve set aside from profits that our directors determine is no longer needed. Our board of directors may also declare and pay dividends out of the share premium account or any other fund or account which can be authorized for this purpose in accordance with the Companies Law.
Our shareholders approved a shareholder rights plan (the “Rights Plan”) and authorized our board of directors to adopt and put into effect (“implement”) the Rights Plan in the future if and when our board of directors deems appropriate and in the best interests of the Company. Our shareholders have also authorized our board of directors to determine the purchase price of the rights under the Rights Plan, select the rights agent under the Rights Plan, and make such changes to the terms of the Rights Plan as the board of directors deems appropriate and in the best interests of the Company.
If the Rights Plan is implemented, we will issue one purchase right in respect of each ordinary share issued and outstanding as of a record date determined by our board of directors. We will also issue a purchase right to each ordinary share issued after the record date, but before the distribution date of the rights or the termination of the Rights Plan, whichever is first. Each purchase right would entitle its holder, under certain circumstances, to purchase from us one one-thousandth of a share of Series A junior participating preferred at a price to be determined by our board of directors at the time of implementing the Rights Plan, subject to adjustment. The purpose of our Rights Plan is to:
The exercise of the rights that may be issued under our Rights Plan would cause substantial dilution to a person attempting to acquire us on terms not approved by our board of directors, and therefore would significantly increase the price that such person would have to pay to complete the acquisition. Our
Rights Plan may deter a potential acquisition or tender offer. Until a “distribution date” occurs, the rights will:
The rights will expire on a date designated by our board of directors at the time the Rights Plan is implemented, unless such date is advanced or extended or unless earlier redeemed or exchanged by us. Following a “distribution date,” the rights would become exercisable and we would issue separate certificates representing the rights, which would trade separately from our ordinary shares. A “distribution date” would occur upon the earlier of:
A holder of rights will not, as such, have any rights as a shareholder, including the right to vote or receive dividends.
Under our form of rights agreement (as amended from time to time, the “Rights Agreement”), a person becomes an “acquiring person” if the person, alone or together with a group, acquires beneficial ownership of 19.9% or more of our outstanding ordinary shares. In addition, an “acquiring person” shall not include us, any of our subsidiaries, or any of our employee benefit plans or any person or entity acting pursuant to such employee benefit plans. Our Rights Agreement also contains provisions designed to prevent the inadvertent triggering of the rights by institutional or certain other shareholders.
If any person becomes an acquiring person, each holder of a right, other than the acquiring person, will be entitled to purchase, at the purchase price determined by our board of directors, a number of our ordinary shares having a market value of two times the purchase price. If, following a public announcement that a person has become an acquiring person:
each holder of a right, other than the acquiring person, will be entitled to purchase a number of ordinary shares of the surviving entity having a market value of two times the purchase price.
After a person becomes an acquiring person, but prior to such person acquiring 50% of our outstanding ordinary shares, our board of directors may exchange each right, other than rights owned by the acquiring person, for
At any time until a person has become an acquiring person, our board of directors may redeem all of the rights at a redemption price of $0.01 per right or such other price as our board of directors shall determine at the time of implementing the Rights Plan. The redemption price shall be payable, at the option of our board of directors, in cash, ordinary shares or such other form of consideration as our board of directors deems appropriate. On the redemption date, the rights will expire and the only entitlement of the holders of rights will be to receive the redemption price.
For so long as the rights are redeemable, our board of directors may amend any provisions in the Rights Agreement without shareholder consent. After the rights are no longer redeemable, our board of directors may only amend the rights agreement without shareholder consent if such amendment would not adversely affect the interests of the holders of rights. Despite the foregoing, at no time may the redemption price of the rights be amended or changed.
The adoption of the Rights Plan and the distribution of the rights should not be taxable to our shareholders or us. Our shareholders may recognize taxable income when the rights become exercisable in accordance with the Rights agreement.
Differences in Corporate Law
The Companies Law is modeled after similar laws in the United Kingdom but does not follow recent changes in United Kingdom laws. In addition, the Companies Law differs from laws applicable to U.S. corporations and their shareholders. Set forth below is a summary of the significant differences between the provisions of the Companies Law applicable to us and the laws applicable to companies incorporated in the United States and their shareholders.
Mergers and Similar Arrangements
The Companies Law permits mergers and consolidations between Cayman Islands companies and between Cayman Islands companies and non-Cayman Islands companies.
For these purposes, (a) “merger” means the merging of two or more constituent companies and the vesting of their undertaking, property and liabilities in one of such companies as the surviving company and (b) a “consolidation” means the combination of two or more constituent companies into a consolidated company and the vesting of the undertaking, property and liabilities of such companies to the consolidated company. In order to effect such a merger or consolidation, the directors of each constituent company must approve a written plan of merger or consolidation, which must then be authorized by a special resolution of the shareholders of each constituent company and such other authorization, if any, as may be specified in such constituent company’s articles of association. The plan must be filed with the Registrar of Companies together with a declaration as to the solvency of the consolidated or surviving company, a list of the assets and liabilities of each constituent company and an undertaking that a copy of the certificate of merger or consolidation will be given to the members and creditors of each constituent company and published in the Cayman Islands Gazette.
Dissenting shareholders have the right to be paid the fair value of their shares (which, if not agreed between the parties, will be determined by the Cayman Islands court) if they follow the required
procedures, subject to certain exceptions. Court approval is not required for a merger or consolidation which is effected in compliance with these statutory procedures.
In addition, there are statutory provisions that facilitate the reconstruction and amalgamation of companies, provided that the arrangement in question is approved by a majority in number representing 75% in value of each class of shareholders and creditors with whom the arrangement is to be made that are present and voting either in person or by proxy at a meeting, or meetings convened for that purpose. The convening of the meetings and subsequently the arrangement must be sanctioned by the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands. While a dissenting shareholder would have the right to express to the court the view that the transaction should not be approved, the court can be expected to approve the arrangement if it satisfies itself that:
When a takeover offer is made and accepted by holders of at least 90% of the shares within four months, the offeror may, within a two-month period, require the holders of the remaining shares to transfer such shares on the terms of the offer. An objection may be made to the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands but is unlikely to succeed unless there is evidence of fraud, bad faith or collusion.
If the arrangement and reconstruction are thus approved, any dissenting shareholders would have no rights comparable to appraisal rights, which might otherwise ordinarily be available to dissenting shareholders of U.S. corporations and allow such dissenting shareholders to receive payment in cash for the judicially determined value of their shares.
We are not aware of any reported class action or derivative action having been brought in a Cayman Islands court. However, a class action suit could nonetheless be brought in a U.S. court pursuant to an alleged violation of U.S. securities laws and regulations. Our Cayman Islands counsel, Maples and Calder, is not aware of any reported class action having been brought in a Cayman Islands court. Derivative actions have been brought in the Cayman Islands courts, and the Cayman Islands courts have confirmed the availability for such actions. In most cases, the company will be the proper plaintiff in any claim based on a breach of duty owed to it, and a claim against (for example) the company’s officers or directors usually may not be brought by a shareholder. However, based on English authorities, which would in all likelihood be of persuasive authority and be applied by a court in the Cayman Islands, exceptions to the foregoing principle apply in circumstances in which:
A shareholder may have a direct right of action against the company where the individual rights of that shareholder have been infringed or are about to be infringed.
Cayman Islands laws do not restrict transactions with directors, requiring only that directors exercise a duty of care and owe fiduciary duties to the companies for which they serve. Under our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association, subject to any separate requirement for audit committee approval under the applicable rules of the Nasdaq Global Market or unless disqualified by the chairman of the relevant board meeting, so long as a director discloses the nature of his interest in any contract or arrangement which he is interested in, such a director may vote in respect of any contract or proposed contract or arrangement in which such director is interested and may be counted in the quorum at such meeting.
Board of Directors
We are managed by our board of directors. Our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association will provide that the number of our directors will be fixed from time to time by our board of directors but may not consist of less than three or more than 15 directors. Our board of directors is currently comprised of eleven members who are divided into three classes with staggered three-year terms. Each director holds office until the expiration of his or her term in accordance with the terms of our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association, until his or her successor has been duly elected and qualified or until his or her death, resignation or removal. The classification of our board of directors may have the effect of delaying or preventing changes in our control or management. Our directors may only be removed for cause by special resolution passed by not less than two-thirds of votes cast by our shareholders. Any vacancies on our board of directors or additions to the existing board of directors can only be filled by the affirmative vote of a simple majority of the remaining directors, although this may be less than a quorum. Any additional directorships resulting from an increase in the authorized number of directors would be distributed among the three classes so that, as nearly as possible, each class would consist of one-third of the authorized number of directors. Any director so appointed by the board of directors shall hold office only for the remaining term of the class of director which he or she replaces and shall then be eligible for re-election. Our directors are not required to hold any of our shares to be qualified to serve on our board of directors.
Meetings of our board of directors may be convened at any time deemed necessary by our secretary on request of the chairman of our board of directors, our chief executive officer, if not the chairman of our board of directors, or a majority of our board of directors. Advance notice of a meeting is not required if each director entitled to attend consents to the holding of such meeting.
Issuance of Additional Ordinary Shares or Preferred Shares
Our amended and restated memorandum and articles of association authorize our board of directors to issue additional ordinary shares from time to time as our board of directors shall determine, to the extent available, authorized but unissued shares. The issuance of additional ordinary shares may, subject to applicable law, be used as an anti-takeover device without further action on the part of our shareholders. Such issuance may dilute the voting power of existing holders of ordinary shares.
Our board of directors may authorize by resolution or resolutions from time to time the issuance of one or more classes or series of preferred shares and to fix the designations, powers, preferences and relative, participating, optional and other rights, if any, and the qualifications, limitations and restrictions thereof, if any, including, without limitation, the number of shares constituting each such class or series, dividend rights, conversion rights, redemption privileges, voting powers, full or limited or no voting powers, and liquidation preferences, and to increase or decrease the size of any such class or series (but not
below the number of shares of any class or series of preferred shares then outstanding) to the extent permitted by applicable law. The resolution or resolutions providing for the establishment of any class or series of preferred shares may, to the extent permitted by applicable law, provide that such class or series shall be superior to, rank equally with or be junior to the preferred shares of any other class or series. Additionally, the issuance of preference shares may have the effect of decreasing the market price of the ordinary shares and may adversely affect the voting and other rights of the holders of ordinary shares.
Our board of directors may issue series of preferred shares without action by our shareholders to the extent authorized but unissued. Accordingly, the issuance of preferred shares may adversely affect the enjoyment of the rights of the holders of our ordinary shares. In addition, the issuance of preferred shares may be used as an anti-takeover device without further action on the part of our shareholders, subject to applicable law. Issuance of preferred shares may dilute the voting power of holders of ordinary shares.