Description of TransUnions securities
EX-4.2 2 exhibit4212-31x2019.htm EXHIBIT 4.2 Exhibit
DESCRIPTION OF THE REGISTRANT’S SECURITIES REGISTERED PURSUANT TO SECTION 12 OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
TransUnion (the “Company,” “we,” “us,” or “our”) has one class of securities registered pursuant to Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), our common stock, par value $0.01 per share. The following is a description of the material terms of, and is qualified in its entirety by, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws, each of which are filed as exhibits to our Annual Report on Form 10-K of which this Exhibit is a part. We encourage you to read our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, amended and restated bylaws, and the applicable provisions of the General Corporation Law of the State of Delaware (the “DGCL”) for more information.
DESCRIPTION OF CAPITAL STOCK
Our authorized capital stock consists of 1,000,000,000 shares of common stock, par value $0.01 per share and 100,000,000 shares of preferred stock, par value $0.01 per share.
Holders of our common stock are entitled to one vote for each share held of record on all matters to which stockholders are entitled to vote generally, including the election or removal of directors. The holders of our common stock do not have cumulative voting rights in the election of directors.
Upon our liquidation, dissolution or winding up and after payment in full of all amounts required to be paid to creditors and to the holders of preferred stock having liquidation preferences, if any, the holders of our common stock will be entitled to receive pro rata our remaining assets available for distribution. Holders of our common stock do not have preemptive, subscription, redemption or conversion rights. Our common stock is not subject to calls or assessment by us. There are no redemption or sinking fund provisions applicable to the common stock. All outstanding shares of our common stock are fully paid and non-assessable. The rights, powers, preferences and privileges of holders of our common stock will be subject to those of the holders of any shares of our preferred stock we may authorize and issue in the future.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation authorizes our Board of Directors to establish one or more series of preferred stock (including convertible preferred stock). Unless required by law or by the NYSE, the authorized shares of preferred stock will be available for issuance without further action by our stockholders. Our Board of Directors is able to determine, with respect to any series of preferred stock, the powers (including voting powers), preferences and relative participations, optional or other special rights, and the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof, of that series, including, without limitation:
the designation of the series;
the number of shares of the series, which our Board of Directors may, except where otherwise provided in the preferred stock designation, increase (but not above the total number of authorized shares of the class) or decrease (but not below the number of shares then outstanding);
whether dividends, if any, will be cumulative or non-cumulative and the dividend rate of the series;
the dates at which dividends, if any, will be payable;
the redemption rights and price or prices, if any, for shares of the series;
the terms and amounts of any sinking fund provided for the purchase or redemption of shares of the series;
the amounts payable on shares of the series in the event of any voluntary or involuntary liquidation, dissolution or winding-up of the affairs of our Company;
whether the shares of the series will be convertible into shares of any other class or series, or any other security, of our Company or any other corporation, and, if so, the specification of the other class or series or other security, the conversion price or prices or rate or rates, any rate adjustments, the date or dates as of which the shares will be convertible and all other terms and conditions upon which the conversion may be made;
restrictions on the issuance of shares of the same series or of any other class or series; and
the voting rights, if any, of the holders of the series.
We could issue a series of preferred stock that could, depending on the terms of the series, impede or discourage an acquisition attempt or other transaction that some, or a majority, of our stockholders might believe to be in their best interests or in which they might receive a premium for their common stock over the market price of the common stock. Additionally, the issuance of preferred stock may adversely affect the holders of our common stock by restricting dividends on the common stock, diluting the voting power of the common stock or subordinating the liquidation rights of the common stock. As a result of these or other factors, the issuance of preferred stock could have an adverse impact on the market price of our common stock.
The DGCL permits a corporation to declare and pay dividends out of “surplus” or, if there is no “surplus,” out of its net profits for the fiscal year in which the dividend is declared and/or the preceding fiscal year. “Surplus” is defined as the excess of the net assets of the corporation over the amount determined to be the capital of the corporation by the Board of Directors. The capital of the corporation is typically calculated to be (and cannot be less than) the aggregate par value of all issued shares of capital stock. Net assets equals the fair value of the total assets minus total liabilities. The DGCL also provides that dividends may not be paid out of net profits if, after the payment of the dividend, capital is less than the capital represented by the outstanding stock of all classes having a preference upon the distribution of assets.
Declaration and payment of any dividend is subject to the discretion of our Board of Directors. The time and amount of dividends are dependent upon our financial condition, operations, cash requirements and availability, debt repayment obligations, capital expenditure needs and restrictions in our debt instruments, industry trends, the provisions of Delaware law affecting the payment of distributions to stockholders and any other factors our Board of Directors may consider relevant.
Anti-Takeover Effects of Our Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation and Amended and Restated Bylaws and Certain Provisions of Delaware Law
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, amended and restated bylaws and the DGCL, which are summarized in the following paragraphs, contain provisions that are intended to enhance the likelihood of continuity and stability in the composition of our Board of Directors. These provisions are intended to avoid costly takeover battles, reduce our vulnerability to a hostile change of control and enhance the ability of our Board of Directors to maximize stockholder value in connection with any unsolicited offer to acquire us. However, these provisions may have an anti-takeover effect and may delay, deter or prevent a merger or acquisition of our Company by means of a tender offer, a proxy contest or other takeover attempt that a stockholder might consider in its best interest, including those attempts that might result in a premium over the prevailing market price for the shares of common stock held by stockholders.
Authorized but Unissued Capital Stock
Delaware law does not require stockholder approval for any issuance of authorized shares. However, the listing requirements of the NYSE, which apply so long as our common stock remains listed on the NYSE, require stockholder approval of certain issuances equal to or exceeding 20% of the then outstanding voting power or then outstanding number of shares of common stock. These additional shares may be used for a variety of corporate purposes, including future public offerings, to raise additional capital or to facilitate acquisitions.
Our Board of Directors may generally issue preferred shares on terms calculated to discourage, delay or prevent a change of control of our Company or the removal of our management. Moreover, our authorized but unissued shares of preferred stock will be available for future issuances without stockholder approval and could be utilized for a variety of corporate purposes, including future offerings to raise additional capital, acquisitions and employee benefit plans.
One of the effects of the existence of unissued and unreserved common stock or preferred stock may be to enable our Board of Directors to issue shares to persons friendly to current management, which issuance could render more difficult or discourage an attempt to obtain control of our Company by means of a merger, tender offer, proxy contest or otherwise, and thereby protect the continuity of our management and possibly deprive our stockholders of opportunities to sell their shares of common stock at prices higher than prevailing market prices.
Classified Board of Directors
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that our Board of Directors will be divided into three classes of directors, with the classes to be as nearly equal in number as possible, and with the directors serving three-year terms. As a result, approximately one-third of our Board of Directors will be elected each year. The classification of directors has the effect of making it more difficult for stockholders to change the composition of our Board of Directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide that, subject to any rights of holders of preferred stock to elect additional directors under specified circumstances, the number of directors will be fixed from time to time exclusively pursuant to a resolution adopted by the Board of Directors.
We have opted out of Section 203 of the DGCL; however, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation contains similar provisions providing that we may not engage in certain “business combinations” with any “interested stockholder” for a three-year period following the time that the stockholder became an interested stockholder, unless:
prior to such time, our Board of Directors approved either the business combination or the transaction which resulted in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder;
at or subsequent to that time, the business combination is approved by our Board of Directors and by the affirmative vote of holders of at least 662/3% of the outstanding voting stock that is not owned by the interested stockholder.
Generally, a “business combination” includes a merger, asset or stock sale or other transaction resulting in a financial benefit to the interested stockholder. Subject to certain exceptions, an “interested stockholder” is a person who, together with that person’s affiliates and associates, owns, or within the previous three years owned, 15% or more of our voting stock. For purposes of this section only, “voting stock” has the meaning given to it in Section 203 of the DGCL.
Under certain circumstances, this provision will make it more difficult for a person who would be an “interested stockholder” to effect various business combinations with a corporation for a three-year period. This provision may encourage companies interested in acquiring our Company to negotiate in advance with our Board of Directors because the stockholder approval requirement would be avoided if our Board of Directors approves either the business combination or the transaction which results in the stockholder becoming an interested stockholder. These provisions also may have the effect of preventing changes in our Board of Directors and may make it more difficult to accomplish transactions which stockholders may otherwise deem to be in their best interests.
Removal of Directors; Vacancies
Under the DGCL, unless otherwise provided in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, directors serving on a classified board may be removed by the stockholders only for cause. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that directors may only be removed for cause, and only by the affirmative vote of holders of at least 662/3% in voting power of all the then-outstanding shares of stock of the Company entitled to vote thereon, voting together as a single class. In addition, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation also provides that, subject to the rights granted to one or more series of preferred stock then outstanding, any newly created directorship on the Board of Directors that results from an increase in the number of directors and any vacancy occurring in the Board of Directors may only be filled by a majority of the directors then in office, although less than a quorum, or by a sole remaining director (and not by the stockholders).
No Cumulative Voting
Under Delaware law, the right to vote cumulatively does not exist unless the certificate of incorporation specifically authorizes cumulative voting. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation does not authorize cumulative voting. Therefore, stockholders holding a majority in voting power of the shares of our stock entitled to vote generally in the election of directors will be able to elect all our directors.
Special Stockholder Meetings
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that special meetings of our stockholders may be called at any time only by or at the direction of the Board of Directors or the chairperson of the Board of Directors. Our amended and restated bylaws prohibit the conduct of any business at a special meeting other than as specified in the notice for such meeting. These provisions may have the effect of deferring, delaying or discouraging hostile takeovers, or changes in control or management of our Company.
Requirements for Advance Notification of Director Nominations and Stockholder Proposals
Our amended and restated bylaws establish advance notice procedures with respect to stockholder proposals and the nomination of candidates for election as directors, other than nominations made by or at the direction of the Board of Directors or a committee of the Board of Directors. In order for any matter to be “properly brought” before a meeting, a stockholder will have to comply with advance notice requirements and provide us with certain information. Generally, to be timely, a stockholder’s notice must be received at our principal executive offices not less than 90 days nor more than 120 days prior to the first anniversary date of the immediately preceding annual meeting of stockholders. Our amended and restated bylaws also specify requirements as to the form and content of a stockholder’s notice. Our amended and restated bylaws allow the chairperson of the meeting at a meeting of the stockholders to adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of meetings that may have the effect of precluding the conduct of certain business at a meeting if the rules and regulations are not followed. These provisions may defer, delay or discourage a potential acquirer from conducting a solicitation of proxies to elect the acquirer’s own slate of directors or otherwise attempting to influence or obtain control of our Company.
Stockholder Action by Written Consent
Pursuant to Section 228 of the DGCL, any action required to be taken at any annual or special meeting of the stockholders may be taken without a meeting, without prior notice and without a vote if a consent or consents in writing, setting forth the action so taken, is signed by the holders of outstanding stock having not less than the minimum number of votes that would be necessary to authorize or take such action at a meeting at which all shares of our stock entitled to vote thereon were present and voted, unless our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides otherwise. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation precludes stockholder action by written consent.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide that the Board of Directors is expressly authorized to make, alter, amend, change, add to, rescind or repeal, in whole or in part, our bylaws without a stockholder vote in any matter not inconsistent with the laws of the State of Delaware or our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. Any amendment, alteration, rescission or repeal of our bylaws by our stockholders requires the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 662/3% in voting power of all the then-outstanding shares of stock of the Company entitled to vote thereon, voting together as a single class.
The DGCL provides generally that the affirmative vote of a majority of the outstanding shares entitled to vote thereon, voting together as a single class, is required to amend a corporation’s certificate of incorporation, unless the certificate of incorporation requires a greater percentage. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that the provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation regarding stockholder action by written consent may be amended, altered, repealed or rescinded only by the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 662/3% in voting power of all the then-outstanding shares of stock of the Company entitled to vote thereon, voting together as a single class.
The combination of the classification of our Board of Directors, the lack of cumulative voting and the supermajority voting requirements will make it more difficult for our existing stockholders to replace our Board of Directors as well as for another party to obtain control of us by replacing our Board of Directors. Because our Board of Directors has the power to retain and discharge our officers, these provisions could also make it more difficult for existing stockholders or another party to effect a change in management. These provisions may have the effect of deterring hostile takeovers, delaying, or preventing changes in control of our management or our Company, such as a merger, reorganization or tender offer. These provisions are intended to enhance the likelihood of continued stability in the composition of our Board of Directors and its policies and to discourage certain types of transactions that may involve an actual or threatened acquisition of us.
These provisions are designed to reduce our vulnerability to an unsolicited acquisition proposal. The provisions are also intended to discourage certain tactics that may be used in proxy fights. However, such provisions could have the effect of discouraging others from making tender offers for our shares and, as a consequence, they also may inhibit fluctuations in the market price of our shares that could result from actual or rumored takeover attempts. Such provisions may also have the effect of preventing changes in management.
Dissenters’ Rights of Appraisal and Payment
Under the DGCL, with certain exceptions, our stockholders will have appraisal rights in connection with a merger or consolidation of us. Pursuant to the DGCL, stockholders who properly request and perfect appraisal rights in connection with such merger or consolidation will have the right to receive payment of the fair value of their shares as determined by the Delaware Court of Chancery.
Stockholders’ Derivative Actions
Under the DGCL, any of our stockholders may bring an action in our name to procure a judgment in our favor, also known as a derivative action, provided that the stockholder bringing the action is a holder of our shares at the time of the transaction to which the action relates or such stockholder’s stock thereafter devolved by operation of law.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that unless we consent to the selection of an alternative forum, the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware shall, to the fullest extent permitted by law, be the sole and exclusive forum for any (i) derivative action or proceeding brought on behalf of our Company, (ii) action asserting a claim of breach of a fiduciary duty owed by any director or officer of our Company to the Company or the Company’s stockholders, creditors or other constituents, (iii) action asserting a claim against the Company or any director or officer of the Company arising pursuant to any provision of the DGCL or our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or our amended and restated bylaws, or (iv) action asserting a claim against the Company or any director or officer of the Company governed by the internal affairs doctrine, in each such case subject to said Court of Chancery having personal jurisdiction over the indispensable parties named as defendants therein. An action against or on behalf of any person or entity purchasing or otherwise acquiring any interest in shares of capital stock of our company shall be deemed to have notice of and consented to the forum selection provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. However, the enforceability of similar forum selection provisions in other companies’ certificates of incorporation and bylaws, respectively, has been challenged in legal proceedings, and it is possible that a court could find these types of provisions to be unenforceable.
Conflicts of Interest
Delaware law permits corporations to adopt provisions renouncing any interest or expectancy in certain opportunities that are presented to the corporation or its officers, directors or stockholders. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation renounces, to the maximum extent permitted from time to time by Delaware law, any interest or expectancy that we have in, or right to be offered an opportunity to participate in, specified business opportunities that are from time to time presented to our officers, directors or stockholders or their respective affiliates, other than those officers, directors, stockholders or affiliates who are our or our subsidiaries’ employees. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation does not renounce our interest in any business opportunity that is expressly offered to a non-employee director solely in his or her capacity as a director or officer of the Company. To the fullest extent permitted by law, no business opportunity will be deemed to be a potential corporate opportunity for us unless we would be permitted to undertake the opportunity under our amended and restated
certificate of incorporation, we have sufficient financial resources to undertake the opportunity and the opportunity would be in line with our business.
Limitations on Liability and Indemnification of Officers and Directors
The DGCL authorizes corporations to limit or eliminate the personal liability of directors to corporations and their stockholders for monetary damages for breaches of directors’ fiduciary duties, subject to certain exceptions. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation includes a provision that eliminates the personal liability of directors for monetary damages for any breach of fiduciary duty as a director, except to the extent such exemption from liability or limitation thereof is not permitted under the DGCL. The effect of these provisions is to eliminate the rights of us and our stockholders, through stockholders’ derivative suits on our behalf, to recover monetary damages from a director for breach of fiduciary duty as a director, including breaches resulting from grossly negligent behavior. However, exculpation does not apply to any director if the director has acted in bad faith, knowingly or intentionally violated the law, authorized illegal dividends or redemptions or derived an improper benefit from his or her actions as a director.
Our amended and restated bylaws provide that we must generally indemnify, and advance expenses to, our directors and officers to the fullest extent authorized by the DGCL. We also are expressly authorized to carry directors’ and officers’ liability insurance providing indemnification for our directors, officers and certain employees for some liabilities. We believe that these indemnification and advancement provisions and insurance are useful to attract and retain qualified directors and executive officers.
The limitation of liability, indemnification and advancement provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws may discourage stockholders from bringing a lawsuit against directors for breach of their fiduciary duty. These provisions also may have the effect of reducing the likelihood of derivative litigation against directors and officers, even though such an action, if successful, might otherwise benefit us and our stockholders.
On August 7, 2019, our Board of Directors approved and adopted an amendment (the “Amendment”) to our amended and restated bylaws to provide for a majority voting standard in uncontested elections of directors. As a result, a director nominee will be elected upon the affirmative vote of a majority of the total votes cast in the election, which means that the number of votes cast “for” a nominee’s election must exceed the number of votes cast “against” that nominee’s election. Prior to the adoption of this amendment, members of our Board of Directors were elected by a plurality vote standard. Our amended and restated bylaws retained a plurality vote standard for contested director elections.
In connection with the approval of this amendment, our Board of Directors also approved changes to the our Corporate Governance Guidelines to require any incumbent director who fails to receive the required number of votes for re-election to promptly tender his or her resignation, and the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee of our Board of Directors will make a recommendation to our Board of Directors whether to accept or reject the resignation, or whether other action should be taken. Taking into account the recommendation of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee, our Board of Directors will determine whether to accept or reject any such resignation, or what other action should be taken, within 90 days from the date of the certification of election results.
On August 7, 2019, our Board of Directors voted unanimously to submit proposals to the our stockholders at our 2020 Annual Meeting of Stockholders seeking approval to amend certain provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation to (i) declassify our Board of Directors such that
directors will stand for election to one-year terms, with all directors standing for election on an annual basis beginning with the 2022 Annual Meeting of Stockholders, (ii) eliminate the supermajority voting requirements that currently exist for removal of directors and certain amendments to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, (iii) remove certain rights, privileges and protections included in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation relating to former significant stockholders of the Company that have expired by their terms, (iv) remove the corporate opportunity waiver provision included in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, and (v) make certain other technical revisions.
The proposed amendments will require the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 66⅔% in voting power of all the then-outstanding shares of stock of the Company entitled to vote thereon and will be set forth in detail in our 2020 proxy statement, which will be filed in advance of our 2020 Annual Meeting of Stockholders. In the event the proposed amendments are approved at the 2020 Annual Meeting of Stockholders and become effective, the Board will approve conforming amendments to our amended and restated bylaws.
Transfer Agent and Registrar
The transfer agent and registrar for our common stock is American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, LLC.
Our common stock is listed on the NYSE under the symbol “TRU.”