DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES
REGISTERED PURSUANT TO SECTION 12 OF
THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
The following summary describes the common stock of Vertex Energy, Inc., a Nevada corporation (“Vertex” or the “Company”), which common stock is registered pursuant to Section 12 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”). Only the Company’s common stock is registered under Section 12 of the Exchange Act.
DESCRIPTION OF COMMON STOCK
The following description of our common stock is a summary and is qualified in its entirety by reference to our Articles of Incorporation, as amended and our Bylaws, as amended, which are incorporated by reference as exhibits to this Annual Report on Form 10-K, and by applicable law. For purposes of this description, references to “Vertex,” “we,” “our” and “us” refer only to Vertex and not to its subsidiaries.
The total number of authorized shares of our common stock is 750,000,000 shares, $0.001 par value per share. The total number of “blank check” authorized shares of our preferred stock is 50,000,000 shares, $0.001 par value per share. The total number of authorized shares of our Series A Convertible Preferred Stock (“Series A Preferred”) is 5,000,000; the total number of authorized shares of Vertex’s Series B Preferred Stock is 10,000,000 (“Series B Preferred Stock”); the total number of authorized shares of Vertex's Series B1 Preferred Stock is 17,000,000 (“Series B1 Preferred Stock”) and the total number of authorized shares of Vertex’s Series C Convertible Preferred Stock is 44,000 (“Series C Preferred Stock”).
The terms of our preferred stock are not included herein as such preferred stock is not registered under Section 12 of the Exchange Act.
Voting Rights. Each share of our common stock is entitled to one vote on all stockholder matters. Shares of our common stock do not possess any cumulative voting rights.
Except for the election of directors, if a quorum is present, an action on a matter is approved if it receives the affirmative vote of the holders of a majority of the voting power of the shares of capital stock present in person or represented by proxy at the meeting and entitled to vote on the matter, unless otherwise required by applicable law, Nevada law, our Articles of Incorporation, as amended or Bylaws, as amended. The election of directors will be determined by a plurality of the votes cast in respect of the shares present in person or represented by proxy at the meeting and entitled to vote, meaning that the nominees with the greatest number of votes cast, even if less than a majority, will be elected. The rights, preferences and privileges of holders of common stock are subject to, and may be impacted by, the rights of the holders of shares of any series of preferred stock that we have designated, or may designate and issue in the future.
Dividend Rights. Each share of our common stock is entitled to equal dividends and distributions per share with respect to the common stock when, as and if declared by our Board of Directors, subject to any preferential or other rights of any outstanding preferred stock.
Liquidation and Dissolution Rights. Upon liquidation, dissolution or winding up, our common stock will be entitled to receive pro rata on a share-for-share basis, the assets available for distribution to the stockholders after payment of liabilities and payment of preferential and other amounts, if any, payable on any outstanding preferred stock.
Fully Paid Status. All outstanding shares of the Company’s common stock are validly issued, fully paid and non-assessable.
Listing. Our common stock is listed and traded on the Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol “VTNR”.
Other Matters. No holder of any shares of our common stock has a preemptive right to subscribe for any of our securities, nor are any shares of our common stock subject to redemption or convertible into other securities.
Anti-Takeover Provisions Under The Nevada Revised Statutes
Sections 78.411 to 78.444 of the Nevada revised statues (the “NRS”) prohibit a Nevada corporation from engaging in a “combination” with an “interested stockholder” for three years following the date that such person becomes an interested stockholder and place certain restrictions on such combinations even after the expiration of the three-year period. With certain exceptions, an interested stockholder is a person or group that owns 10% or more of the corporation’s outstanding voting power (including stock with respect to which the person has voting rights and any rights to acquire stock pursuant to an option, warrant, agreement, arrangement, or understanding or upon the exercise of conversion or exchange rights) or is an affiliate or associate of the corporation and was the owner of 10% or more of such voting stock at any time within the previous three years.
A Nevada corporation may elect not to be governed by Sections 78.411 to 78.444 by a provision in its articles of incorporation. We have such a provision in our Articles of Incorporation, as amended, pursuant to which we have elected to opt out of Sections 78.411 to 78.444; therefore, these sections do not apply to us.
Nevada law also seeks to impede “unfriendly” corporate takeovers by providing in Sections 78.378 to 78.3793 of the NRS that an “acquiring person” shall only obtain voting rights in the “control shares” purchased by such person to the extent approved by the other stockholders at a meeting. With certain exceptions, an acquiring person is one who acquires or offers to acquire a “controlling interest” in the corporation, defined as one-fifth or more of the voting power. Control shares include not only shares acquired or offered to be acquired in connection with the acquisition of a controlling interest, but also all shares acquired by the acquiring person within the preceding 90 days. The statute covers not only the acquiring person but also any persons acting in association with the acquiring person.
A Nevada corporation may elect to opt out of the provisions of Sections 78.378 to 78.3793 of the NRS. We have no provision in our Articles of Incorporation pursuant to which we have elected to opt out of Sections 78.378 to 78.3793; therefore, these sections do apply to us.
Removal of Directors
Section 78.335 of the NRS provides that 2/3rds of the voting power of the issued and outstanding shares of the Company are required to remove a Director from office. As such, it may be more difficult for stockholders to remove Directors due to the fact the NRS requires greater than majority approval of the stockholders for such removal.