New C&DI’s on Fee Calculations and Form S-8
The SEC issued three new C&DIs on fee calculations:
Question: An issuer has a Form S-8 on file that registers shares of common stock to be issued upon the exercise of outstanding options. The issuer has decided to stop granting stock options and believes that it has more shares registered on the Form S-8 than it will need to cover the exercise of the outstanding options. May the issuer transfer to a new registration statement the filing fees associated with the securities that the issuer believes it will not need to issue, and continue to use the Form S-8 to cover the exercise of the outstanding options?
Answer: No. Rule 457(p) permits filing fees to be transferred only after the registered offering has been completed or terminated or the registration statement has been withdrawn. As a result, the issuer may not transfer the fees associated with the excess securities until it completes or terminates the offering registered on Form S-8. However, as provided in Securities Act Forms CDI 126.43, if the excess securities are or may become authorized for issuance under another issuer plan, the issuer may file a post-effective amendment to the Form S-8 to disclose that these securities will be sold under the other plan. The Part I information delivered pursuant to Rule 428 with respect to each plan should be specific to that plan. [Nov. 9, 2016]
Question: An issuer has an effective Form S-8 that registers shares of common stock to be issued under the issuer’s 2006 equity compensation plan, and has recently adopted a new 2016 equity compensation plan. The 2006 plan authorized the issuer to grant awards for up to 20 million shares, and to date the issuer has granted options (all of which remain outstanding) exercisable for 15 million shares. Upon effectiveness of the 2016 plan, no further awards may be granted pursuant to the 2006 plan and the 5 million shares not covered by any award under the 2006 plan become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan. The terms of the 2016 plan provide that the 15 million shares underlying outstanding options granted pursuant to the 2006 plan will also become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan when the outstanding options under the 2006 plan expire or are terminated or canceled. The issuer plans to file a new Form S-8 to register 10 million shares that are newly authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan. May it also include on that registration statement the 5 million shares and an estimated number of shares that will become available upon the cancellation or termination of awards, all of which were previously authorized for issuance pursuant to the 2006 plan and that will roll over to the 2016 plan? Alternatively, is there another way the issuer can offer and sell under the 2016 plan the 5 million shares that are not subject to outstanding options under the 2006 plan and any shares that become authorized under the 2016 plan upon the cancellation or termination of options under the 2006 plan without paying a new registration fee?
Answer: Yes, the issuer may register on the new Form S-8 the 5 million shares that have become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan, an estimated number of shares that will become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan upon cancellation or termination of awards granted under the 2006 plan, and the newly authorized 10 million shares. Because the offering is not yet completed under the 2006 plan, however, Rule 457(p) does not permit the registrant to claim the registration fee associated with the shares from the 2006 plan as an offset against the registration fee due for the new registration statement. See Securities Act Rules CDI 240.11.
Alternatively, the issuer can file a post-effective amendment to the earlier Form S-8 for the 2006 plan to indicate that the registration statement will also cover the issuance of those shares under the 2016 plan once they are no longer issuable pursuant to the 2006 plan and instead become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan. The post-effective amendment, which would be required under Item 512(a)(1)(iii) of Regulation S-K to disclose a material change in the plan of distribution, should identify both the 2006 plan and the 2016 plan on the cover page, and describe how shares that will not be issued under the 2006 plan have or may become authorized for issuance under the 2016 plan. No new filing fee would be due upon the filing of the post-effective amendment. Because additional securities may not be added to a registration statement by means of a post-effective amendment (see Securities Act Rule 413(a)), the newly authorized 10 million shares must be registered on a separate registration statement. This alternative applies only with respect to Form S-8. [Nov. 9, 2016]
Question: When filing fees paid in connection with a prior registration statement are used to offset fees due on a subsequent registration statement pursuant to Rule 457(p), what information pertaining to the offset should the issuer include in a note to the Calculation of Registration Fee table?
Answer: Rule 457(p) requires a note to the table to state the name of the registrant, the file number and initial filing date of the earlier registration statement from which the offset is claimed and the dollar amount of the offset. In addition, to assist the staff in assessing the registrant’s eligibility for offset, the registrant should quantify the amount of unsold securities from the prior registration statement associated with the claimed offset and disclose either that the prior registration statement has been withdrawn or that any offering that included the unsold securities has been terminated or completed. An offering registered on Form S-8 is only completed or terminated when no additional securities will be issued pursuant to the plan covered by the Form S-8, including through the exercise of any outstanding awards. [Nov. 9, 2016]
The SEC also issued three new CD&I’s on Form S-8. New Questions 126.43 and 126.44 mirror Questions 240.15 and 240.16 above, and the third provides:
Question: May a company register securities to be issued pursuant to two plans on the same registration statement? If so, how is this done?
Answer: Yes. The full title of each plan should be listed on the face of the registration statement on the appropriate line. The Part I information delivered pursuant to Rule 428 with respect to each plan should be specific to that plan. If any Part II information relates specifically to one plan, the disclosure should make that relationship clear. [Nov. 9, 2016]
Contact Steve Quinlivan for more information.