As filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on November 1, 2019

 

Registration No. 333-         

 

 

UNITED STATES

SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

WASHINGTON, D.C. 20549

 

FORM S-3

REGISTRATION STATEMENT

UNDER

THE SECURITIES ACT OF 1933

 

Akers Biosciences, Inc.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

New Jersey   22-2983783

(State or other jurisdiction of

incorporation or organization)

 

(I.R.S. Employer

Identification Number)

 

201 Grove Road

Thorofare, NJ 08086

(856) 848-8698

(Address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of registrant’s principal executive offices)

 

Christopher C. Schreiber

Executive Chairman

Akers Biosciences, Inc.

201 Grove Road

Thorofare, New Jersey USA 08086

(856) 848-8698

(Name, address, including zip code, and telephone number, including area code, of agent for service)

 

Copies to:

 

Barry I. Grossman, Esq.

Sarah E. Williams, Esq.

Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP

1345 Avenue of Americas

New York, NY 10105

(212) 370-1300

Fax: (212) 370-7889

 

Approximate date of commencement of proposed sale to the public: From time to time after the effective date of this Registration Statement.

 

If the only securities being registered on this Form are being offered pursuant to dividend or interest reinvestment plans, please check the following box: [  ]

 

If any of the securities being registered on this Form are to be offered on a delayed or continuous basis pursuant to Rule 415 under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, other than securities offered only in connection with dividend or interest reinvestment plans, check the following box: [X]

 

If this Form is filed to register additional securities for an offering pursuant to Rule 462(b) under the Securities Act, please check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering. [  ]

 

If this Form is a post-effective amendment filed pursuant to Rule 462(c) under the Securities Act, check the following box and list the Securities Act registration statement number of the earlier effective registration statement for the same offering. [  ]

 

If this Form is a registration statement pursuant to General Instruction I.D. or a post-effective amendment thereto that shall become effective upon filing with the Commission pursuant to Rule 462(e) under the Securities Act, check the following box. [  ]

 

If this Form is a post-effective amendment to a registration statement filed pursuant to General Instruction I.D. filed to register additional securities or additional classes of securities pursuant to Rule 413(b) under the Securities Act, check the following box. [  ]

 

Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company or an emerging growth company. See the definitions of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer,” “smaller reporting company” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer [  ] Accelerated filer [  ]
       
Non-accelerated filer [X] Smaller reporting company [X]
       
    Emerging growth company [X]

 

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided to Section 7(a)(2)(B) of the Securities Act. [  ]

 

CALCULATION OF REGISTRATION FEE

 

Title of Each Class of
Securities to be Registered (1)
 

Amount to be

Registered (2) (3)

    Proposed Maximum Aggregate Offering Price per Security (2) (3)     Proposed Maximum Aggregate Offering Price (2) (3)     Amount of Registration Fee (4)  
Common Stock, no par value                        
Preferred Stock, no par value                        
Purchase Contracts (5)                        
Warrants to Purchase common stock, Preferred Stock or other Securities (6)                        
Subscription Rights to Purchase common stock or Preferred Stock                        
Depositary Shares                        
Debt Securities (which may be senior or subordinated, convertible or non-convertible, secured or unsecured)                                
Units (7)                        
TOTAL               $ 25,000,000     $ 3,245  

 

(1) Securities registered hereunder may be sold separately, together or as units with other securities registered hereunder.
(2) Not specified as to each class of securities to be registered pursuant to Form S-3 General Instruction II.D.
(3) The Registrant is registering an indeterminate aggregate principal amount and number of securities of each identified class of securities up to a proposed aggregate offering price of $25,000,000, which may be offered from time to time in unspecified numbers and at indeterminate prices, and as may be issuable upon conversion, redemption, repurchase, exchange, or exercise of any securities registered hereunder, including under any applicable anti-dilution provisions. In addition, pursuant to Rule 416 under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, the shares being registered hereunder include such indeterminate number of shares of common stock and preferred stock as may be issuable with respect to the shares being registered hereunder as a result of stock splits, stock dividends or similar transactions.
(4) The registration fee is calculated in accordance with Rule 457(o) under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.
(5) Includes purchase contracts issuable upon conversion or exchange of securities registered hereunder to the extent any such securities are by their terms convertible into or exchangeable for purchase contracts. Each purchase contract obligates the registrant to sell, and the holder thereof to purchase, an indeterminate number of debt securities, shares of common stock, shares of preferred stock or other securities registered hereunder.
(6) Warrants may represent rights to purchase debt securities, common stock, preferred stock or other securities registered hereunder.
(7) Each Unit consists of any combination of two or more of the securities being registered hereby.

 

The Registrant hereby amends this Registration Statement on such date or dates as may be necessary to delay its effective date until the Registrant shall file a further amendment which specifically states that this Registration Statement shall thereafter become effective in accordance with Section 8(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 or until this Registration Statement shall become effective on such date as the Commission, acting pursuant to said Section 8(a), may determine.

 

 

 

     
 

 

The information in this prospectus is not complete and may be changed. We may not sell the securities until the Registration Statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, of which this prospectus is a part, is effective. This prospectus is not an offer to sell these securities and is not soliciting an offer to buy these securities in any state where the offer or sale is not permitted.

 

SUBJECT TO COMPLETION, DATED NOVEMBER 1, 2019

 

Prospectus

 

 

 

 

 

 

$25,000,000

 

COMMON STOCK

PREFERRED STOCK

PURCHASE CONTRACTS

WARRANTS

SUBSCRIPTION RIGHTS

DESPOSITARY SHARES

DEBT SECURITIES

UNITS

 

  common stock;
  preferred stock;
  purchase contracts;
  warrants to purchase our securities;
  subscription rights to purchase any of the foregoing securities;
  depositary shares;
  secured or unsecured debt securities consisting of notes, debentures or other evidences of indebtedness which may be senior debt securities, senior subordinated debt securities or subordinated debt securities, each of which may be convertible into equity securities; or
  units comprised of, or other combinations of, the foregoing securities.

 

We may offer and sell these securities separately or together, in one or more series or classes and in amounts, at prices and on terms described in one or more offerings. We may offer securities through underwriting syndicates managed or co-managed by one or more underwriters or dealers, through agents or directly to purchasers. The prospectus supplement for each offering of securities will describe in detail the plan of distribution for that offering. For general information about the distribution of securities offered, please see “Plan of Distribution” in this prospectus.

 

Each time our securities are offered, we will provide a prospectus supplement containing more specific information about the particular offering and attach it to this prospectus. The prospectus supplements may also add, update or change information contained in this prospectus. This prospectus may not be used to offer or sell securities without a prospectus supplement which includes a description of the method and terms of this offering.

 

Our common stock is quoted on the NASDAQ Capital Market under the symbol “AKER.” The last reported sale price of our common stock on the NASDAQ Capital Market on October 31, 2019 was $0.39 per share. The aggregate market value of our outstanding common stock held by non-affiliates is $6,219,515 based on 12,508,958 shares of outstanding common stock, of which 12,463,458 shares are held by non-affiliates, and a per share price of $0.499 which was the closing sale price of our common stock as quoted on the NASDAQ Capital Market on September 19, 2019. During the 12 calendar month period that ends on, and includes, the date of this prospectus, we have not offered and sold any of our securities pursuant to General Instruction I.B.6 of Form S-3.

 

If we decide to seek a listing of any preferred stock, purchase contracts, warrants, subscriptions rights, depositary shares, debt securities or units offered by this prospectus, the related prospectus supplement will disclose the exchange or market on which the securities will be listed, if any, or where we have made an application for listing, if any.

 

Investing in our securities involves certain risks. See “Risk Factors” beginning on page 5 and the risk factors in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K, which is incorporated by reference herein, as well as in any other recently filed quarterly or current reports and, if any, in the relevant prospectus supplement. We urge you to carefully read this prospectus and the accompanying prospectus supplement, together with the documents we incorporate by reference, describing the terms of these securities before investing.

 

Neither the Securities and Exchange Commission nor any state securities commission has approved or disapproved of these securities or passed upon the adequacy or accuracy of this prospectus. Any representation to the contrary is a criminal offense.

 

The date of this Prospectus is ___________, 2019

 

     
 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

  Page
About This Prospectus 1
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements 2
Prospectus Summary 3
Risk Factors 5
Use of Proceeds 18
Plan of Distribution 18
Description of Securities We May Offer 21
Forms of Securities 31
Legal Matters 33
Experts 33
Where You Can Find Additional Information 33
Incorporation of Documents by Reference 33

 

i
 

 

ABOUT THIS PROSPECTUS

 

This prospectus is part of a registration statement on Form S-3 that we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, or SEC, utilizing a “shelf” registration process. Under this shelf registration process, we may offer and sell, either individually or in combination, in one or more offerings, any of the securities described in this prospectus, for total gross proceeds of up to $25,000,000. This prospectus provides you with a general description of the securities we may offer. Each time we offer securities under this prospectus, we will provide a prospectus supplement to this prospectus that will contain more specific information about the terms of that offering. We may also authorize one or more free writing prospectuses to be provided to you that may contain material information relating to these offerings. The prospectus supplement and any related free writing prospectus that we may authorize to be provided to you may also add, update or change any of the information contained in this prospectus or in the documents that we have incorporated by reference into this prospectus.

 

We urge you to read carefully this prospectus, any applicable prospectus supplement and any free writing prospectuses we have authorized for use in connection with a specific offering, together with the information incorporated herein by reference as described under the heading “Incorporation of Documents by Reference,” before investing in any of the securities being offered. You should rely only on the information contained in, or incorporated by reference into, this prospectus and any applicable prospectus supplement, along with the information contained in any free writing prospectuses we have authorized for use in connection with a specific offering. We have not authorized anyone to provide you with different or additional information. This prospectus is an offer to sell only the securities offered hereby, but only under circumstances and in jurisdictions where it is lawful to do so.

 

The information appearing in this prospectus, any applicable prospectus supplement or any related free writing prospectus is accurate only as of the date on the front of the document and any information we have incorporated by reference is accurate only as of the date of the document incorporated by reference, regardless of the time of delivery of this prospectus, any applicable prospectus supplement or any related free writing prospectus, or any sale of a security.

 

This prospectus contains summaries of certain provisions contained in some of the documents described herein, but reference is made to the actual documents for complete information. All of the summaries are qualified in their entirety by the actual documents. Copies of some of the documents referred to herein have been filed, will be filed or will be incorporated by reference as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, and you may obtain copies of those documents as described below under the section entitled “Where You Can Find Additional Information.”

 

This prospectus contains, or incorporates by reference, trademarks, tradenames, service marks and service names of Akers Biosciences, Inc.

 

1
 

 

CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS

 

This prospectus and any accompanying prospectus supplement and the documents we have filed or will file with the SEC that are or will be incorporated by reference into this prospectus and the accompanying prospectus supplement contain forward-looking statements, within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”), that involve risks and uncertainties. Any statements contained, or incorporated by reference, in this prospectus and any accompanying prospectus that are not statements of historical fact may be forward-looking statements. When we use the words “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “will” and other similar terms and phrases, including references to assumptions, we are identifying forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by forward-looking statements.

 

A variety of factors, some of which are outside our control, may cause our operating results to fluctuate significantly. They include:

 

  changes in the market acceptance of our products and services;
     
  increased levels of competition;
     
  changes in political, economic or regulatory conditions generally and in the markets in which we operate;
     
  our relationships with our key customers;
     
  adverse conditions in the industries in which our customers operate;
     
  our ability to retain and attract senior management and other key employees;
     
  our ability to quickly and effectively respond to new technological developments;
     
  delisting of our common stock from the NASDAQ Capital Market;
     
  our ability to protect our trade secrets or other proprietary rights, operate without infringing upon the proprietary rights of others and prevent others from infringing on the proprietary rights of the Company; and
     
  other risks, including those described in the “Risk Factors” discussion of this prospectus

 

The foregoing does not represent an exhaustive list of risks that may impact upon the forward-looking statements used herein or in the documents incorporated by reference herein. Please see “Risk Factors” in our reports filed with the SEC or in a prospectus supplement related to this prospectus for additional risks which could adversely impact our business and financial performance. Moreover, new risks regularly emerge and it is not possible for our management to predict all risks, nor can we assess the impact of all risks on our business or the extent to which any risk, or combination of risks, may cause actual results to differ from those contained in any forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements included in this prospectus and any accompanying prospectus supplement are based on information available to us on the date hereof or thereof. Except to the extent required by applicable laws or rules, we undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. All subsequent written and oral forward-looking statements attributable to us or persons acting on our behalf are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained throughout (or incorporated by reference in) this prospectus, any accompanying prospectus and the documents we have filed with the SEC.

 

2
 

 

PROSPECTUS SUMMARY

 

This summary highlights selected information contained elsewhere in this prospectus. This summary does not contain all the information that you should consider before investing in our Company. You should carefully read the entire prospectus, including all documents incorporated by reference herein. In particular, attention should be directed to our “Risk Factors,” “Information With Respect to the Company,” “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and the financial statements and related notes thereto contained herein or otherwise incorporated by reference hereto, before making an investment decision.

 

As used herein, and any amendment or supplement hereto, unless otherwise indicated, “we,” “us,” “our,” the “Company,” “Akers” or similar terminology means Akers Biosciences, Inc.

 

Overview

 

We develop, manufacture, and supply rapid, point-of-care screening and testing products designed to bring health-related information directly to the patient or clinician in a timely and cost-efficient manner. We believe that we have advanced the science of diagnostics through the development of several proprietary platform technologies. The Company’s current product offerings focus on delivering diagnostic assistance in a variety of healthcare fields/specialties, including diagnostic rapid manual point-of-care tests for the detection of allergic reactions to Heparin and for on- and off-the-job alcohol safety initiatives.

 

All of our rapid, single-use tests are performed in vitro (outside the body) and are designed to enhance patient well-being and reduce the cost of healthcare. The Company’s current product offerings focus primarily on the commercialization of its Particle Immuno-Filtration Assay (PIFA®) Technology platform. PIFA® technology is a patented immunoassay method which rapidly and accurately detects target antigens or antibodies. It is the technology platform utilized in the Company’s core commercialized products, the PIFA® Heparin/PF4 and PIFA® Pluss/PF4 rapid assays, which test for an allergic reaction to Heparin. Furthermore, we have determined that it is not economically appropriate to further develop or pursue approval of the PIFA PLUSS Chlamydia Rapid Assay device. As of September 30, 2019, the Company’s marketed products consist only of its PIFA® Heparin/PF4, PIFA® Pluss/PF4 and BreathScan Alcohol Detectors.

 

We believe that low-cost, single-use testing not only saves time and money, but allows for more frequent, near-patient testing which may save lives. We believe that our FDA-cleared rapid diagnostic tests help facilitate targeted diagnoses and real-time treatment.

 

We believe the use of rapid tests, which can be performed at the point-of-care when and where the patient is being consulted, can result in immediate diagnostic decisions and subsequent treatment regimens and is an important development in the practice of medicine. Point-of-care testing addresses today’s challenges in the healthcare industry, such as:

 

  cost pressures/efficiency of healthcare delivery; and
     
  need for easy to use, accurate at-home tests for individuals to monitor their personal health and wellness

 

Strategy

 

Akers’ strategy for the medical device business is to leverage where possible its distributor relationships, while exploring strategies for further reducing its costs.

 

Akers has developed and currently maintains strategic relationships with established companies in the following key market segments:

 

  Clinical Laboratories;
     
  Physicians’ Office and Urgent Care Clinics; and
     
  Retail.

 

3
 

 

Risks Associated with Our Business

 

Our business is subject to many significant risks, as more fully described in the section entitled “Risk Factors”. You should read and carefully consider these risks, together with all of the other information in this prospectus, including the financial statements and the related notes included elsewhere in this prospectus, before deciding whether to invest in our securities. If any of the risks discussed in this prospectus actually occur, our business, financial condition or operating results could be materially and adversely affected. These risks include, but are not limited to, the following:

 

  we have a history of operating losses and we cannot guarantee that we can ever achieve sustained profitability;
  due to our dependence on a limited number of customers and the loss of any such customer would have a material adverse effect on our operating results and prospects;
  because we may not be able to maintain necessary regulatory clearances for some of our products, we may not generate revenue in the amounts we expect, or in the amounts necessary to continue our business;
  we are subject to regulations of various government agencies and if we are unable to comply with such regulations it would materially affect our business;
  modifications to our devices may require additional FDA approval which could force us to cease marketing and/or recall the modified device until we obtain new approvals;
  the Company’s business would suffer if the Company were unable to acquire adequate sources of supply;
  our failure to regain and maintain compliance with the continued listing requirements of the NASDAQ Capital Market could result in a delisting of our common stock, which could adversely affect the market liquidity of our common stock and the market price of our common stock could decrease.; and
  we are currently subject to a number of litigations and we may be subject to similar other litigation in the future.

 

Implications of Being an Emerging Growth Company

 

We qualify as an “emerging growth company,” as defined in the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012, or the JOBS Act. For as long as we remain an emerging growth company, we may take advantage of certain exemptions from various reporting requirements that are applicable to other public companies. These provisions include, but are not limited to:

 

  being permitted to have only two years of audited financial statements and only two years of related selected financial data and management’s discussion and analysis of financial condition and results of operations disclosure;
  an exemption from compliance with the auditor attestation requirement in the assessment of our internal control over financial reporting pursuant to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, as amended, or the Sarbanes-Oxley Act;
  reduced disclosure about executive compensation arrangements in our periodic reports, registration statements and proxy statements; and
  exemptions from the requirements to seek non-binding advisory votes on executive compensation or golden parachute arrangements.

 

In addition, the JOBS Act permits emerging growth companies to take advantage of an extended transition period to comply with new or revised accounting standards applicable to public companies. We chose to “opt out” of this provision. We will remain an emerging growth company until the earliest of (i) the end of the fiscal year following the fifth anniversary of the completion of our initial public offering, (ii) the first fiscal year after our annual gross revenues exceed $1.07 billion, (iii) the date on which we have, during the immediately preceding three-year period, issued more than $1.0 billion in non-convertible debt securities or (iv) the end of any fiscal year in which the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the end of the second quarter of that fiscal year.

 

Corporate Information

 

We were incorporated in 1989 in the state of New Jersey. Our principal executive offices are located at 201 Grove Road, Thorofare, New Jersey USA 08086 and our telephone number is (856) 848-8698. Our corporate website address is www.akersbio.com. The information contained on or accessible through our website is not a part of this prospectus, and the inclusion of our website address in this prospectus is an inactive textual reference only.

 

4
 

 

RISK FACTORS

 

An investment in our securities involves a high degree of risk. Before deciding whether to invest in our securities, you should consider carefully the risks described below, together with other information in this prospectus, the information and documents incorporated by reference, and in any free writing prospectus that we have authorized for use in connection with this offering. The occurrence of any of the following risks could have a material and adverse effect on our business, reputation, financial condition, results of operations and future growth prospects, as well as our ability to accomplish our strategic objectives. As a result, the trading price of our common stock could decline and you could lose all or part of your investment. Additional risks and uncertainties not presently known to us or that we currently deem immaterial may also impair our business operations and stock price.

 

Risks Related to Our Business

 

We have a history of operating losses and we cannot guarantee that we can ever achieve sustained profitability.

 

We have recorded a net loss attributable to common stockholders in most reporting periods since our inception. Our net losses for the six months ended June 30, 2019 and 2018 were $1,711,849 and $3,927,444, respectively. Our accumulated deficit at December 31, 2018 was $115,694,881. Our strategy for the medical device business is to leverage where possible its distributor relationships, while exploring strategies for further reducing its costs. Overall, we are working to reduce our cash burn in order to have sufficient cash funds available to execute on a transaction which would result from our pursuit of strategic alternatives. There can be no assurance of success in reducing our loss, becoming profitable, or having sufficient cash to complete a strategic alternative transaction.

 

Due to our dependence on a limited number of customers and the loss of any such customer would have a material adverse effect on our operating results and prospects.

 

As of June 30, 2019, we had two principal U.S. customers; Cardinal Health, Inc. (“Cardinal Health”) and Fisher Healthcare (“Fisher”) each has the non-exclusive right to distribute PIFA Heparin/PF4 Rapid Assays within the U.S. For the six months ended June 30, 2019, Cardinal Health and Fisher accounted for approximately 78% of the Company’s product revenue.

 

Because of our dependence on a limited number of key customers, the loss of a major customer (or loss of a key program with a major customer), or any significant reduction in orders by a major customer or termination of the any of their distribution agreements would materially affect our business, our results of operations and our financial condition. We expect that sales to relatively few customers will continue to account for a significant percentage of our net sales for the foreseeable future, however there can be no assurance that any of these customers or any of our other customers will continue to utilize our products or our services at current levels.

 

Due to our dependence on a limited number of customers, we are subject to a concentration of credit risk.

 

As of June 30, 2019, two customers accounted for 76% of our trade receivables as compared to December 31, 2018, where 73% of trade receivables are attributed to these customers. In the case of insolvency by one of our significant customers, a trade receivable with respect to that customer might not be collectible, might not be fully collectible, or might be collectible over longer than normal terms, each of which could adversely affect our financial position.

 

The Company’s business would suffer if the Company were unable to acquire adequate sources of supply.

 

We use a diverse and broad range of raw materials in the manufacturing of our products. We purchase all of our raw materials and select items, such as packaging, from external suppliers. In addition, we purchase some supplies from single sources for reasons of proprietary know-how, quality assurance, sole source availability, or due to regulatory qualification requirements and disruption of these sources could have, at a minimum, a temporary adverse effect on shipments and the financial results of the Company. We work closely with our suppliers to ensure continuity of supply while maintaining high quality and reliability. Any prolonged inability to obtain certain materials or components could have an adverse effect on the Company’s financial condition or results of operations and could result in damage to its relationships with its customers and, accordingly, adversely affect the Company’s business.

 

5
 

 

During the first half of 2018, we experienced lower yields in the process of extracting antigen from the supplier provided platelets used to produce our PIFA Heparin product. At these yield levels, our production of this product was under target levels, which had resulted in backorders.

 

We will require additional capital in the future to support our operations or to pursue strategic alternative transactions. If we do not obtain any such additional financing, our business prospects, financial condition and results of operations will be adversely affected.

 

We expect cash flows from our current operations to be inadequate to cover our anticipated expenses and we believe that our existing capital resources will only be sufficient to fund our current operations for the next ten to twelve months. As such, we will need to obtain significant additional financing, both in the short and long-term to cover operating expenses and to fund potential acquisitions. We may not be able to secure adequate additional financing when needed on acceptable terms, or at all. To execute our business strategy, we may issue additional equity securities in public or private offerings. If we cannot secure sufficient additional funding on a timely basis, we may be forced to forego strategic opportunities, delay, scale back or eliminate future product development, and/or be forced to sell assets, perhaps on unfavorable terms, which would harm our business and our ability to generate positive cash flows from operations needed to stay in business in the future, and ultimately could be forced to discontinue our operations and liquidate, in which event it is unlikely that stockholders would receive any distribution on their shares.

 

Any additional capital raised through the sale of equity or equity-backed securities may dilute our stockholders’ ownership percentages and could also result in a decrease in the market value of our equity securities.

 

The terms of any securities issued by us in future capital transactions may be more favorable to new investors, and may include preferences, superior voting rights and the issuance of warrants or other derivative securities, which may have a further dilutive effect on the holders of any of our securities then outstanding.

 

In addition, we may incur substantial costs in pursuing future capital financing, including investment banking fees, legal fees, accounting fees, securities law compliance fees, printing and distribution expenses and other costs. We may also be required to recognize non-cash expenses in connection with certain securities we issue, such as convertible notes and warrants, which may adversely impact our financial condition.

 

Because we may not be able to maintain or obtain necessary regulatory clearances for some of our products, we may not generate revenue in the amounts we expect, or in the amounts necessary to continue our business.

 

All of our existing products are subject to regulation in the U.S. by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and/or other domestic and international governmental, public health agencies, regulatory bodies or non-governmental organizations. In particular, we are subject to strict governmental controls on the development, manufacture, labeling, distribution and marketing of our products and may not be able to maintain the necessary regulatory clearances for some of our products.

 

The process of obtaining required approvals or clearances for a potential new product varies according to the nature of and uses for a specific product. These processes can involve lengthy and detailed laboratory testing, human clinical trials, sampling activities, and other costly, time-consuming procedures. The submission of an application to a regulatory authority does not guarantee that the authority will grant an approval or clearance for the product. Each authority may impose its own requirements and can delay or refuse to grant approval or clearance, even though a product has been approved in another country.

 

The time taken to obtain approval or clearance varies depending on the nature of the application and may result in the passage of a significant period of time from the date of submission of the application. Delays in the approval or clearance processes increase the risk that we will not succeed in introducing or selling the subject products, and we may be required to abandon a proposed product after devoting substantial time and resources to its development.

 

6
 

 

Changes in domestic and foreign government regulations could increase our costs and could require us to undergo additional trials or procedures, or could make it impractical or impossible for us to market our products for certain uses, in certain markets, or at all.

 

Changes in government regulations may adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations because we may have to incur additional expenses if we are required to change or implement new testing, manufacturing and control procedures. If we are required to devote resources to develop such new procedures, we may not have sufficient resources to devote to research and development, marketing, or other activities that are critical to our business.

 

We are subject to ongoing regulations of various government agencies and if we are unable to comply with such regulations, our products could be subject to restrictions or withdrawal from the market, which would materially affect our business.

 

We can manufacture and sell our products only if we comply with certain regulations of government agencies. As a U.S. manufacturer, we must operate our production facility in accordance with the requirements established by the FDA under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act). As such, we have implemented a quality system that is intended to comply with applicable regulations. Our manufacturing plant is subject to periodic inspections by the FDA, and at last inspection, the facility was found to be in substantial compliance with current good manufacturing practice (cGMP) requirements. Although the Company is dedicated to remaining in compliance with such practices, the cGMP requirements could change and negatively impact our ability to manufacture our products without modifications to our operating procedures or changes to our equipment or human resource allocations which may materially affect our business.

  

If we fail to obtain regulatory approval in foreign jurisdictions, then we cannot market our products in those jurisdictions.

 

Many foreign countries in which we market or may market our products have regulatory bodies and restrictions similar to those of the FDA. International sales are subject to foreign government regulation, the requirements of which vary substantially from country to country. The time required to obtain approval by a foreign country may be longer or shorter than that required for FDA approval and the requirements may differ. Companies are now required to obtain a CE Mark, which shows conformance with the requirements of applicable European Conformity directives, prior to the sale of some medical devices within the European Union. Some of our current products that require CE Markings have them. We may be required to conduct additional testing or to provide additional information, resulting in additional expenses, to obtain necessary approvals. If we fail to obtain approval in such foreign jurisdictions, we would not be able to sell our products in such jurisdictions, thereby reducing the potential revenue from the sale of our products.

 

We may be unable to market our products outside the United States if our products cannot meet certain requirements of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act requirements for exporting medical devices.

 

Any medical device that is legally marketed in the U.S. may be exported anywhere in the world without prior FDA notification or approval. Medical devices that are not FDA-cleared for marketing legally in the U.S. may be exported under section 801(e)(1) of the FD&C Act, provided that they are intended for export only, they are class I or class II devices, and they are:

 

  In accordance with the specifications of the foreign purchaser;
     
  Not in conflict with the laws of the country to which they are intended for export;
     
  Labeled on the outside of the shipping package that they are intended for export; and
     
  Not sold or distributed in the U.S.

 

We cannot guarantee that certain current and future products will meet all of the aforementioned specifications for export which could adversely impact our ability to market our products outside the U.S.

 

7
 

 

Modifications to our devices may require additional FDA approval which could force us to cease marketing and/or recall the modified device until we obtain new approvals.

 

After a device receives a 510(k) clearance, any modification that could significantly affect its safety or effectiveness, or that would constitute a major change in its intended use, requires a new 510(k) clearance or could require a Premarket approval (“PMA”). PMA is the FDA process of scientific and regulatory review to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of Class III medical devices. Class III devices are those that support or sustain human life, are of substantial importance in preventing impairment of human health, or which present a potential, unreasonable risk of illness or injury. Currently the Company does not market devices within this Class III category nor does it intend to in the foreseeable future. However, the FDA requires each manufacturer to make this determination in the first instance, but the FDA can review any decision. If the FDA disagrees with a manufacturer’s decision not to seek a new 510(k) clearance, the agency may retroactively require the manufacturer to seek 510(k) clearance or PMA approval. The FDA also can require the manufacturer to cease marketing and/or recall the modified devices until 510(k) clearance or PMA approval is obtained. We have modified one of our prescription use, 510(k)-cleared devices, specifically the PIFA Heparin/PF4 Rapid Assay to include our seraSTAT device. However, we determined that, in our view, based on FDA guidance as to when to submit a 510(k) notification for changes to a cleared device, new 510(k) clearances or PMA approvals were not required. We cannot assure you that the FDA would agree with any of our decisions not to seek 510(k) clearance or PMA approval. If the FDA requires us to seek 510(k) clearance or PMA approval for any modification, we also may be required to cease marketing and/or recall the modified device until we obtain a new 510(k) clearance or PMA approval.

 

We are subject to inspection and market surveillance by the FDA to determine compliance with regulatory requirements. If the FDA finds that we have failed to comply, the agency can institute a wide variety of enforcement actions which may materially affect our business operations.

 

We are subject to inspection and market surveillance by the FDA to determine compliance with regulatory requirements. If the FDA finds that we have failed to comply, the agency can institute a wide variety of enforcement actions, ranging from a public warning letter to more severe sanctions such as:

 

  fines, injunctions and civil penalties;
     
  recall, detention or seizure of our products;
     
  the issuance of public notices or warnings;
     
  operating restrictions, partial suspension or total shutdown of production;
     
  refusing our requests for a 510(k) clearance of new products;
     
  withdrawing a 510(k) clearance already granted; and
     
  criminal prosecution.

 

The FDA also has the authority to request repair, replacement or refund of the cost of any medical device manufactured or distributed by us. Our failure to comply with applicable requirements could lead to an enforcement action that may have an adverse effect on our financial condition and results of operations.

 

We may not have the resources to conduct clinical protocols sufficient to yield data suitable for publication in peer-reviewed journals and our inability to do so in the future could have an adverse effect on marketing our products effectively.

 

In order for our products targeted for use by hospital laboratory professionals and healthcare providers to be widely adopted, we would have to conduct clinical protocols that are designed to yield data suitable for publication in peer-reviewed journals. These studies are often time-consuming, labor-intensive and expensive to execute. The Company has not had the resources to effectively implement such clinical programs within its clinical development activities and may not be able to do so in the future. In addition, if a protocol is initiated, the results of which may ultimately not support the anticipated positioning and benefit proposition for the product. Either of these scenarios could hinder our ability to market our products and revenue may decline.

 

8
 

 

If we fail to establish, maintain and expand relationships with distributors, sales of our products would decline.

 

The Company does not control the efforts of its distributors and its distributors are not prohibited from selling competing products. Our ability to sell our products depends largely on the Company’s relationships with such distributors. Accordingly, we are subject to the risk that they may not commit the financial and other resources to market and sell our products to our level of expectation, they may experience financial hardship or they may otherwise terminate our relationship on short notice. In the U.S. clinical laboratory marketplace, many of our existing and potential customers purchase our products through our two national distributors, Cardinal Health and Fisher Health. In addition, the Company relies on its distribution network to negotiate pricing arrangements and contracts with Group Purchasing Organizations and their affiliated hospitals and other members. For the six months ended June 30, 2019, two customers generated 44% and 34%, or 78% in the aggregate, of the Company’s revenue. For the six months ended June 30, 2018, two customers generated 49%, and 17%, or 66% in the aggregate, of the Company’s revenue. In the future, if we are unable to maintain existing relationships, our competitive position would likely suffer and our business would be harmed.

 

Our business is vulnerable to the availability of raw materials, our ability to forecast customer demand and our ability to manage production capacity.

 

Our ability to meet customer demand depends, in part, on our production capacity and on obtaining supplies, a number of which can only be obtained from a single supplier or a limited number of suppliers. A reduction or disruption in our production capacity or our supplies could delay products and fulfillment of orders and otherwise negatively impact our business.

 

We must accurately predict both the demand for our products and the lead times required to obtain the necessary components and materials. If we overestimate demand, we may experience underutilized capacity and excess inventory levels. If we underestimate demand, we may miss delivery deadlines and sales opportunities and incur additional costs for labor overtime, equipment overuse and logistical complexities. Additionally, our production capacity could be affected by manufacturing problems. Difficulties in the production process could reduce yields or interrupt production, and, as a result, we may not be able to deliver products on time or in a cost-effective, competitive manner. Our failure to adequately manage our capacity could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

Our ability to meet customer demand also depends on our ability to obtain timely and adequate delivery of materials, parts and components from our suppliers. We generally do not maintain contracts with any of our key suppliers. From time to time, suppliers may extend lead times, limit the amounts supplied to us or increase prices due to capacity constraints or other factors. Supply disruptions may also occur due to shortages in critical materials. In addition, a number of our raw materials are obtained from a single supplier. Many of our suppliers must undertake a time-consuming qualification process before we can incorporate their raw materials into our production process. If we are unable to obtain materials from a qualified supplier, it can take up to a year to qualify a new supplier, assuming an alternative source of supply is available. A reduction or interruption in supplies or a significant increase in the price of one or more supplies could have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

Some of our finished goods, including our PIFA products and control materials related to PIFA Heparin/PF4 assays, are temperature-sensitive.

 

Proper packaging and time in transit are critical to the stability of some of our clinical laboratory products when they are en route to our distributors or end users. If certain specialized packaging materials cannot be obtained, and/or if our contracted common carriers, or those of our distributors, cannot meet product-specific delivery requirements, our products may not perform as intended and may lead to requests for product replacement. If such issues become widespread it could hurt our reputation and we could potentially lose customers which would adversely affect our business.

 

Also, given the issue of temperature sensitivity, time in transit may limit our ability to service potential markets outside of the U.S. for those products, especially those with geographies that do not allow for shipment and customs clearance within four business days. This could adversely affect our potential to generate revenue for some products on an international level.

 

9
 

 

Demands of third-party payors, cost reduction pressures among our customers and restrictive reimbursement practices may adversely affect our revenue.

 

Our ability to negotiate favorable contracts with non-governmental payors, including managed-care plans or Group Purchasing Organizations (“GPOs”), even if facilitated by our distributors, may significantly affect revenue and operating results. Our customers continue to face cost reduction pressures that may cause them to curtail their use of, or reimbursement for some of our products, to negotiate reduced prices or other concessions or to delay payment. Furthermore, the increasing leverage of organized buying groups among non-governmental payors may reduce market prices for our products and services, thereby reducing our profitability. Reductions in price increases or the amounts received from current customers or lower pricing for our products to new customers could have a material adverse effect on the financial position, cash flows and results of operations.

 

Failure to obtain medical reimbursement for our products, as well as a changing regulatory and reimbursement environment, may impact our business.

 

The U.S. healthcare regulatory environment may change in a way that restricts our ability to market our products due to medical coverage or reimbursement limits. Sales of our diagnostic tests will depend in part on the extent to which the costs of such tests are covered by health maintenance, managed care, and similar healthcare management organizations, or reimbursed by government health payor administration authorities, private health coverage insurers and other third-party payors. These healthcare payors are increasingly challenging the prices charged for medical products and services. The containment of healthcare costs has become a priority of federal and state governments. Accordingly, our products may not be considered to be cost effective, and reimbursement may not be available or sufficient to allow us to sell our products on a competitive basis. Legislation and regulations affecting reimbursement for our products may change at any time and in ways that are difficult to predict and these changes may have an adverse effect to us.

 

CMS, the federal agency responsible for administering the Medicare program, along with its contractors establishes coverage and reimbursement policies for the Medicare program. In addition, private payors often follow the coverage and reimbursement policies of Medicare. We cannot assure you that government or private third-party payors will cover and reimburse the procedures using our products in whole or in part in the future or that payment rates will be adequate.

 

For some of our products, our success in non-U.S. markets may depend upon the availability of coverage and reimbursement from the third-party payors through which health care providers are paid in those markets. Health care payment systems in non-U.S. markets vary significantly by country, and include single-payor, government managed systems as well as systems in which private payors and government-managed systems exist, side-by-side. For some of our products, our ability to achieve market acceptance or significant sales volume in international markets may be dependent on the availability of reimbursement for our products under health care payment systems in such markets. There can be no assurance that reimbursement for our products will be obtained or that such reimbursement will be adequate.

 

We may fail to retain qualified personnel.

 

We have substantially reduced the number of our employees in order to reduce our costs. Accordingly, retaining our remaining personnel in the future will be critical to our success. If we fail to retain and motivate these highly skilled personnel, we may be unable to continue our operating activities, and this could have a material adverse effect on the Company’s business, financial condition, results of operations and future prospects.

 

10
 

 

We rely on the key executive officer of the management team.

 

We are dependent on our management team to execute against its business plan. Failure could result in delays in product development, loss of customers and sales and diversion of management resources, which could adversely affect our operating results.

  

Expenses incurred with respect to monitoring, protecting, and defending our intellectual property rights could adversely affect our business.

 

Competitors and others may infringe on our intellectual property rights, or may allege that we have infringed on theirs. Monitoring infringement and misappropriation of intellectual property can be difficult and expensive, and we may not be able to detect infringement or misappropriation of our proprietary rights.

 

We may incur substantial costs as a result of litigation or other proceedings relating to patent and other intellectual property rights and we may be unable to protect our rights to, or use of, our technology.

 

Some or all of our patent applications may not result in the issue of patents, or the claims of any issued patents may not afford meaningful protection for our technologies or products. In addition, patents issued to us or our licensors, if any, may be challenged and subsequently narrowed, invalidated, found unenforceable or circumvented. Patent litigation is widespread in the biotechnology industry and could harm our business. Litigation might be necessary to protect our patent position. Patentability, invalidity, freedom-to-operate or other opinions may be required to determine the scope and validity of third-party proprietary rights. If we choose to go to court to stop a third party from using the inventions protected by our patent, that third party would have the right to ask the court to rule that such patents are invalid and/or should not be enforced against that third party. These lawsuits are expensive and we may not have the required resources to pursue such litigation or to protect our patent rights. In addition, there is a risk that the court will decide that our patents are not valid or that we cannot stop the other party from using their inventions. There is also the risk that, even if the validity of these patents is upheld, the court will find that the third party’s activities do not infringe our rights in these patents.

 

Furthermore, a third party may claim that we are infringing the third party’s patent rights and may go to court to stop us from engaging in our normal operations and activities, including making or selling our products or product candidates. These lawsuits are costly and could affect our results of operations and divert the attention of managerial and technical personnel. There is a risk that a court would decide that we are infringing the third party’s patents and would order us to stop the activities covered by the patents. In addition, there is a risk that a court will order us to pay the other party’s treble damages or attorneys’ fees for having violated the other party’s patents. The biotechnology industry has produced a proliferation of patents, and it is not always clear to industry participants, including us, which patents cover various types of products or methods of use. The coverage of patents is subject to interpretation by the courts, and the interpretation is not always uniform. If we are sued for patent infringement, we would need to demonstrate that our products or methods of use either do not infringe the claims of the relevant patent and/or that the third-party patent claims are invalid, and we may not be able to do this. Proving invalidity in the United Sates is difficult since it requires a showing of clear and convincing evidence to overcome the presumption of validity enjoyed by issued patents.

 

In addition, changes in either patent laws or in interpretations of patent laws in the United States and other countries may materially diminish the value of our intellectual property or narrow the scope of our patent protection. In September 2011, the U.S. Congress passed the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act (“AIA”) which became effective in March 2013. The AIA reforms United States patent law in part by changing the standard for patent approval for certain patents from a “first to invent” standard to a “first to file” standard and developing a post-grant review system. It is difficult to predict the effect or impact the AIA will have on the operation of our business and the protection and enforcement of our intellectual property. While we believe that the AIA’s post-grant review system is less expensive than litigation should we need to challenge a third party patent or defend our own patent, the AIA and its implementation could increase the uncertainties and costs surrounding the prosecution of our patent applications and the enforcement or defense of our issued patents, all of which could have a material adverse effect on our business and financial condition. Because some patent applications in the United States may be maintained in secrecy until the patents are issued, patent applications in the United States and many foreign jurisdictions are typically not published until eighteen months after filing, and publications in the scientific literature often lag behind actual discoveries. We cannot be certain that others have not filed patent applications for technology covered by our issued patents or our pending applications or that we were the first to invent the technology (pre-AIA) or first to file (post-AIA). Our competitors may have filed, and may in the future file, patent applications covering technology similar or the same as ours. Any such patent application may have priority over our patent application and could further require us to obtain rights to such technologies in order to carry on our business. If another party has filed a U.S. patent application on inventions similar to or the same as ours, we may have to participate in an interference or other proceeding in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, or the USPTO, or a court to determine priority of invention in the United States, for pre-AIA applications and patents. The costs of these proceedings could be substantial, and it is possible that such efforts would be unsuccessful, resulting in a loss of our U.S. patent position with respect to such inventions. Some of our competitors may be able to sustain the costs of complex patent litigation more effectively than we can because they have substantially greater resources.

 

11
 

 

We may be subject to claims that our employees have wrongfully used or disclosed alleged trade secrets of their former employers.

 

As is common in the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industry, we employ individuals who were previously employed at other biotechnology or pharmaceutical companies, including our competitors or potential competitors. Although the Company has no knowledge of any claims against us, we may be subject to claims that these employees or the Company have inadvertently or otherwise used or disclosed trade secrets or other proprietary information of their former employers. Litigation may be necessary to defend against these claims. Even if we are successful in defending against these claims, litigation could result in substantial costs and be a distraction to management. To date, none of our employees have been subject to such claims.

 

We may be at risk that our former employees may wrongfully use or disclose our trade secrets.

 

In addition to patent protection, we rely heavily upon know-how and trade secret protection, as well as non-disclosure agreements and invention assignment agreements with our employees, consultants, and third parties, to protect our confidential and proprietary information, especially where we do not believe patent protection is appropriate or obtainable. In addition to contractual measures, we try to protect the confidential nature of our proprietary information using physical and technological security measures. Such measures may not, for example, in the case of misappropriation of a trade secret by an employee, former employee, consultant, former consultant or third party with authorized access, provide adequate protection for our proprietary information. Our security measures may not prevent an employee or consultant from misappropriating our trade secrets and providing them to a competitor, and recourse we take against such misconduct may not provide an adequate remedy to protect our interests fully. Enforcing a claim that a party illegally disclosed or misappropriated a trade secret can be difficult, expensive, and time-consuming, and the outcome is unpredictable. In addition, trade secrets may be independently developed by others in a manner that could prevent legal recourse by us. If any of our confidential or proprietary information, such as our trade secrets, were to be disclosed or misappropriated, or if any such information was independently developed by a competitor, our competitive position could be harmed.

 

If we deliver products with defects, we may be subject to product recalls or negative publicity, our credibility may be harmed, market acceptance of our products may decrease and we may be exposed to liability.

 

The manufacturing and marketing of professional and consumer diagnostics involve an inherent risk of product liability claims. For example, a defect in one of our diagnostic products could lead to a false positive or false negative result, affecting the eventual diagnosis. Our product development and production are extremely complex and could expose our products to defects. Manufacturing and design defects could lead to recalls, either voluntary or required by the FDA or other government authorities, and could result in the removal of a product from the market. Defects in our products could also harm our reputation, lead to product liability claims, claims that inaccurate test results lead to death or injury, negative publicity and decrease sales of our products. We have obtained $10,000,000 of product liability insurance and we have never received a product liability claim, and have generally not seen product liability claims for screening tests that are accompanied by appropriate disclaimers. However, in the event there is a claim, this insurance may not fully cover our potential liabilities. In addition, as we attempt to bring new products to market, we may need to increase our product liability coverage which would be a significant additional expense that we may not be able to afford. If we are unable to obtain sufficient insurance coverage at an acceptable cost to protect us, we may be forced to abandon efforts to commercialize our products or those of our strategic partners, which would reduce our revenue.

 

12
 

 

We currently manufacture our products at a single location. Any disruption at this facility could adversely affect our business and results of operations.

 

We currently manufacture all our products at our manufacturing plant. If our manufacturing plant were damaged or destroyed, or otherwise subject to disruption, it would require substantial lead-time to replace or rebuild the facility for the manufacture of our products. In such event, we would be forced to rely entirely on third-party contract manufacturers for an indefinite period of time. We do not currently have established relationships with any back-up manufacturers. Even if we are able to establish a relationship with a third-party manufacturer, there is no assurance that such manufacturer will be able to meet our needs from a technical, timing, or cost effective manner.  

 

We are currently subject to a number of securities litigations and we may be subject to similar or other litigation in the future.

 

The Company is currently subject to a number of litigations, as discussed in the “Business” section. In connection with certain of these litigations, the Company has entered into settlements of claims for significant monetary damages. We may also be subject to judgements or enter into additional settlements of claims for significant monetary damages for the securities litigations that we have yet to enter into settlement agreements. Defending against the current litigations is or can be time-consuming, expensive and cause diversion of our management’s attention.

 

With respect to any litigation, our insurance may not reimburse us or may not be sufficient to reimburse us for the expenses or losses we may suffer in contesting and concluding such lawsuit. Substantial litigation costs, including the substantial self-insured retention that we are required to satisfy before any insurance applies to a claim, unreimbursed legal fees or an adverse result in any litigation may adversely impact our business, operating results or financial condition. We believe that our directors' and officers' liability insurance will cover our potential liability with respect to the securities class-action lawsuit; however, the insurer has reserved its rights to contest the applicability of the insurance to such claims and the limits of the insurance may be insufficient to cover our eventual liability.

 

We face substantial competition from other companies and our operating results may suffer if we fail to compete effectively.

 

Competition among providers of rapid, point-of-care screening and testing products is intense and subject to rapid technological change and evolving industry requirements and standards. We compete with many companies that have greater financial, product development, sales and marketing resources and experience than we do. Furthermore, new product development and technological change characterize the areas in which we compete. Our present or future products could be rendered obsolete or uneconomical as a result of technological advances by one or more of our present or future competitors. We must continue to develop and commercialize new products and technologies to remain competitive in the diagnostic testing industry. We believe that we compete primarily on the basis of our single-use testing. Customer and clinical support, and data that demonstrate both improvement in a patient's quality of life and a product's cost-effectiveness are additional aspects of competition.

 

We are aware of other rapid, point-of-care screening and diagnostic testing products in the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Specifically, Alere/Abbott, ACON Laboratories, Inc., Immucor, Inc., OraSure Technologies, Inc., and Quidel Corporation are companies that develop rapid, point-of-care screening and diagnostic testing products and currently maintain dominant market positions within the diagnostic testing market.

 

If we market products or interact with health care practitioners in a manner that violates healthcare fraud or abuse laws, we may be subject to civil or criminal penalties, including exclusion from participation in government healthcare programs.

 

We receive payments directly from or bill directly to Medicare, Medicaid or other national or third-party payers for our current product, U.S. federal and state healthcare laws and regulations pertaining to fraud or abuse are and will be applicable to our business. We are subject to healthcare fraud and abuse regulation by the U.S. federal government and the states in which we conduct our business.

 

13
 

 

The laws that may affect our ability to operate include the federal healthcare program anti-kickback statute, which prohibits, among other things, knowingly and willfully offering, paying, soliciting, or receiving remuneration to induce, or in return for, the purchase, lease or order, or arrangement for the purchase, lease or order of any healthcare item or service reimbursable under Medicare, Medicaid or other federally financed healthcare programs. This statute applies to arrangements between pharmaceutical manufacturers and prescribers, purchasers and formulary managers. Although there are a number of statutory exceptions and regulatory safe harbors protecting certain common activities, the exceptions and safe harbors are drawn narrowly, and practices that involve remuneration intended to induce prescribing, purchases or recommendations may be subject to scrutiny if they do not qualify for an exception or safe harbor. 

 

Federal false claims laws prohibit any person from knowingly presenting, or causing to be presented, a false claim for payment to the federal government, or knowingly making, or causing to be made, a false statement to get a false claim paid. Pharmaceutical companies have been prosecuted under these laws for a variety of alleged promotional and marketing activities, such as providing free product to customers with the expectation that the customers would bill federal programs for the product, reporting to pricing services inflated average wholesale prices that were then used by federal programs to set reimbursement rates, engaging in off-label promotion that caused claims to be submitted to Medicaid for non-covered off-label uses and submitting inflated best price information to the Medicaid Drug Rebate Program.

 

The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 also created prohibitions against healthcare fraud and false statements relating to healthcare matters. The healthcare fraud statute prohibits knowingly and willfully executing a scheme to defraud any healthcare benefit program, including private payers. The false statements statute immediately noted above prohibits knowingly and willfully falsifying, concealing or covering up a material fact or making any materially false, fictitious or fraudulent statement in connection with the delivery of or payment for healthcare benefits, items or services.

 

In addition, there has been a recent trend of increased federal and state regulation of payments made to physicians. The ACA, through the Physician Payment Sunshine Act of 2010, imposed new requirements on manufacturers of drugs, devices, biologics and medical supplies for which payment is available under Medicare, Medicaid or the Children's Health Insurance Program (with certain exceptions) to report annually to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services ("CMS") information related to payments or other "transfers of value" made to physicians (defined to include doctors, dentists, optometrists, podiatrists and chiropractors) and teaching hospitals, and applicable manufacturers and group purchasing organizations to report annually to CMS ownership and investment interests held by physicians (as defined above) and their immediate family members and payments or other "transfers of value" to such physician owners and their immediate family members. Manufacturers are required to report such data to the government by the 90th calendar day of each year.

 

The majority of states also have statutes or regulations similar to these federal laws, which apply to items and services reimbursed under Medicaid and other state programs, or, in several states, apply regardless of the payer. In addition, some states have laws that require pharmaceutical companies to adopt comprehensive compliance programs. For example, under California law, pharmaceutical companies must comply with both the April 2003 Office of Inspector General Compliance Program Guidance for Pharmaceutical Manufacturers and the PhRMA Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals, as amended. Moreover, certain states mandate the tracking and reporting of gifts, compensation and other remuneration paid by us to physicians and other healthcare providers.

 

Although compliance programs can mitigate the risk of investigation and prosecution for violations of these laws, the risks cannot be entirely eliminated. Any action against us for violation of these laws, even if we successfully defend against it, could cause us to incur significant legal expenses, cause reputational harm and divert our management's attention from the operation of our business. Moreover, achieving and sustaining compliance with applicable U.S. federal and state laws may prove costly.

 

14
 

 

Data security breaches may disrupt our operations and adversely affect our operating results.

 

Our network security and data recovery measures and those of third parties with which we contract, may not be adequate to protect against computer viruses, cyber-attacks, breaches, and similar disruptions from unauthorized tampering with our computer systems. The misappropriation, theft, sabotage or any other type of security breach with respect to any of our proprietary and confidential information that is electronically stored, including patient data, could cause interruptions in our operations, could result in a material disruption of our business operations and could expose us to third-party legal claims. Furthermore, we could be required to make substantial expenditures of resources to remedy the cause of cyber-attacks or break-ins. This disruption could have a material adverse impact on our business, operating results and financial condition.

 

Our business processes personal medical information. The use of this information is critical to our operations and innovation. New and evolving regulations could bring increased scrutiny of our data management in the future. Any cyber-attacks or other failure to protect critical and sensitive systems and information could damage our reputation, prompt litigation or lead to regulatory sanctions, all of which could materially affect our financial condition and results of operation.

 

We are subject to various internal control reporting requirements under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. We can provide no assurance that we will at all times in the future be able to report that our internal controls over financial reporting are effective.

 

As a public company, we are required to comply with Section 404 of the U.S. Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 ("Section 404"). In any given year, we cannot be certain as to the time of completion of our internal control evaluation, testing and remediation actions or of their impact on our operations. Upon completion of this process, we may identify control deficiencies of varying degrees of severity under applicable SEC and Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (U.S.) rules and regulations. Our management, including our chief executive officer and principal financial officer, does not expect that our internal controls and disclosure controls will prevent all errors and all fraud. A control system, no matter how well conceived and operated, can provide only reasonable, not absolute, assurance that the objectives of the control system are met. In addition, the design of a control system must reflect the fact that there are resource constraints and the benefit of controls must be relative to their costs. Because of the inherent limitations in all control systems, no evaluation of controls can provide absolute assurance that all control issues and instances of fraud, if any, in our company have been detected. These inherent limitations include the realities that judgments in decision-making can be faulty and that breakdowns can occur because of simple errors or mistakes. Further, controls can be circumvented by individual acts of some persons, by collusion of two or more persons, or by management override of the controls. The design of any system of controls is also based in part upon certain assumptions about the likelihood of future events, and there can be no assurance that any design will succeed in achieving our stated goals under all potential future conditions. Over time, a control may be inadequate because of changes in conditions, such as growth of the company or increased transaction volume, or the degree of compliance with the policies or procedures may deteriorate. Because of inherent limitations in a cost-effective control system, misstatements due to error or fraud may occur and not be detected.

 

In addition, as a public company, we are required to report, among other things, control deficiencies that constitute material weaknesses or changes in internal controls that, or that are reasonably likely to, materially affect internal controls over financial reporting. A "material weakness" is a deficiency, or a combination of deficiencies, in internal control over financial reporting, such that there is a reasonable possibility that a material misstatement of our annual consolidated financial statements will not be prevented or detected on a timely basis. If we fail to comply with the requirements of Section 404 or if we report a material weakness, we might be subject to regulatory sanction and investors may lose confidence in our consolidated financial statements, which may be inaccurate if we fail to remedy such material weakness.

 

We incur increased costs and demands on management as a result of compliance with laws and regulations applicable to public companies, which could harm our operating results.

 

As a public company, we incur significant legal, accounting and other expenses that we did not incur as a private company, including costs associated with public company reporting requirements. In addition, the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 and the Dodd-Frank Act of 2010, as well as rules implemented by the SEC and the Nasdaq Stock Market, impose a number of requirements on public companies, including with respect to corporate governance practices. Our management and other personnel need to devote a substantial amount of time to these compliance and disclosure obligations. Moreover, compliance with these rules and regulations has increased our legal, accounting and financial compliance costs and has made some activities more time-consuming and costly. It is also more expensive for us to obtain director and officer liability insurance.

 

15
 

 

Risks Related to our Pursuit of Strategic Alternatives

 

We are reviewing strategic alternatives and there can be no assurance that we will be successful in identifying or completing any strategic transaction, that any such strategic transaction will result in additional value for our stockholders or that the process will not have an adverse impact on our business.

 

In November 2018, we announced that our Board of Directors had initiated a process to evaluate strategic alternatives to maximize shareholder value. We have not set a timetable for completion of this exploratory process and cannot provide any assurances that the process will result in the consummation of a strategic transaction of any kind, or that we will not abandon the process. We do not intend to discuss or disclose further developments during this process unless and until our board of directors has approved a specific action or we otherwise determine that further disclosure is appropriate. The process of reviewing strategic alternatives may be time consuming and disruptive to our business operations and, if we are unable to effectively manage the process, our business, financial condition and results of operations could be adversely affected. We could incur substantial expenses associated with identifying, evaluating and negotiating potential strategic alternatives. We may not be able to successfully identify attractive acquisition candidates or negotiate favorable terms in the future. Furthermore, our ability to effectively integrate any future acquisitions will depend on, among other things, the adequacy of our implementation plans, the ability of our management to oversee and operate effectively the combined operations and our ability to achieve desired operational efficiencies. If we are unable to successfully integrate the operations of any businesses that we may acquire in the future, our business, financial position, results of operations or cash flows could be adversely affected. There can be no assurance that any potential transaction or other strategic alternative, if consummated, will provide greater value to our stockholders than that reflected in the current price of our common stock. Until the review process is concluded, perceived uncertainties related to our future may result in the loss of potential business opportunities and volatility in the market price of our common stock and may make it more difficult for us to attract and retain qualified personnel and business partners.

 

If we are unable to make acquisitions and investments, or successfully integrate them into our business, our business could be harmed.

 

As part of our business strategy, we may acquire other companies or businesses. However, we may not be able to find suitable acquisition candidates, and we may not be able to complete acquisitions on favorable terms, if at all. Acquisitions involve numerous risks, any of which could harm our business and negatively affect our operating results, including:

 

  difficulties in integrating the technologies, operations, existing contracts and personnel of an acquired company;
     
  difficulties in supporting and transitioning clients and suppliers, if any, of an acquired company;
     
  diversion of financial and management resources from existing operations or alternative acquisition opportunities;
     
  failure to realize the anticipated benefits or synergies of a transaction;
     
  failure to identify all of the problems, liabilities or other shortcomings or challenges of an acquired company or technology, including issues related to intellectual property, regulatory compliance practices, revenue recognition or other accounting practices, or employee or client issues;
     
  risks of entering new markets in which we have limited or no experience;
     
  potential loss of key employees, clients, vendors and suppliers from either our current business or an acquired company’s business;
     
  inability to generate sufficient revenue to offset acquisition costs;
     
  additional costs or equity dilution associated with funding the acquisition; and
     
  possible write-offs or impairment charges relating to acquired businesses.

 

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The Company, if it acquires a new business, or retains individuals with expertise in a new industry to pursue a strategic alternative, will have a limited operating history in such new industry, specifically the Cannabis industry, and may not succeed.

 

The Company will have a limited operating history within the Cannabis industry and may not succeed. The Company will be subject to all risks inherent in a developing business enterprise. The Company’s likelihood of continued success must be considered in light of the problems, expenses, difficulties, complications, and delays frequently encountered in connection with manufacturing specialty products and the competitive and regulatory environment in which the Company operates. For example, the Cannabis industry is a new industry that, as a whole, may not succeed, particularly if the Federal government changes course and decides to prosecute those dealing in Cannabis under Federal law. If that happens, there may not be an adequate market for the Company’s products. As a new industry, there are not established players on whose business models the Company can follow or build upon. Similarly, there is limited information about comparable companies available for potential investors to review in making a decision about whether to invest in the Company. Furthermore, as the industrial hemp industry is a new market, it is ripe for technological advancements that could limit or eliminate the need for the Company’s products. Furthermore, unanticipated expenses, problems, and technical difficulties may occur and they may result in material delays in the operation of the Company’s business, in particular with respect to the Company’s new products. The Company may not be able to successfully address these risks and uncertainties or successfully implement the Company’s operating strategies. If the Company fails to do so, such failure could materially harm the Company’s business to the point of having to cease operations and could impair the value of the Company’s common stock to the point investors may lose their entire investment.

 

If the Company acquires a business in the cannabis industry or otherwise pursues a strategic alternative, we would face additional unique and evolving risks.

 

Further legislative development beneficial to the cannabis industry is not guaranteed

 

If the Company acquires a business in the cannabis industry or otherwise pursues a strategic alternative, the success of such business would depend on the continued development of the cannabis industry and the activity of commercial business and government regulatory agencies within the industry. The continued development of the cannabis industry is dependent upon continued legislative and regulatory authorization of cannabis at the state level and a continued laissez-faire approach by federal enforcement agencies. Any number of factors could slow or halt progress in this area. Further regulatory progress beneficial to the industry cannot be assured. While there may be ample public support for legislative action, numerous factors impact the legislative and regulatory process, including election results, scientific findings or general public events. Any one of these factors could slow or halt progressive legislation relating to cannabis and the current tolerance for the use of cannabis by consumers, which could adversely affect the business we may acquire or pursue. These changes may require us, should we acquire a business or otherwise pursues a strategic alternative in the cannabis industry, to incur substantial costs associated with legal and compliance fees and ultimately require us to alter our business plan. Furthermore, violations of these laws, or alleged violations, could disrupt our business and result in a material adverse effect on our operations. In addition, we cannot predict the nature of any future laws, regulations, interpretations or applications, and it is possible that regulations may be enacted in the future that will be directly applicable to the business we may acquire or pursue.

 

The cannabis industry could face strong opposition from other industries

 

We believe that established businesses in other industries may have a strong economic interest in opposing the development of the cannabis industry. Cannabis may be seen by companies in other industries as an attractive alternative to their products, including recreational marijuana as an alternative to alcohol, and medical marijuana as an alternative to various commercial pharmaceuticals. Many industries that could view the emerging cannabis industry as an economic threat are well established, with vast economic and federal and state lobbying resources. It is possible that companies within these industries could use their resources to attempt to slow or reverse legislation legalizing cannabis. Any inroads these companies make in halting or impeding legislative initiatives that would be beneficial to the cannabis industry could have a detrimental impact on our potential business.

 

The legality of marijuana could be reversed in one or more states

 

There is a substantial amount of change occurring in the U.S. regarding the use of medical and recreational marijuana products. While federal laws prohibit the sale and distribution of most marijuana products not approved or authorized by the FDA, at least 30 jurisdictions and the District of Columbia have enacted state laws to enable possession and use of marijuana for medical purposes, and at least ten jurisdictions for recreational purposes. However, the voters or legislatures of states in which marijuana has already been legalized could potentially repeal applicable laws which permit the operation of both medical and retail marijuana businesses. These actions might force our potential business to cease operations in one or more states entirely.

 

Banking regulations could limit access to banking services

 

Since the use of marijuana is illegal under federal law, there is a compelling argument that banks cannot lawfully accept for deposit funds from businesses involved with marijuana. Consequently, businesses involved in the cannabis industry often have trouble finding a bank willing to accept their business. The inability to open bank accounts may make it difficult for our potential business to operate and our reliance on cash could result in a heightened risk of theft. Additionally, some courts have denied marijuana-related businesses bankruptcy protection, thus, making it very difficult for lenders to recoup their investments, which may limit the willingness of banks to lend to us.

 

Insurance risks

 

In the United States, many marijuana-related businesses are subject to a lack of adequate insurance coverage. In addition, many insurance companies may deny claims for any loss relating to marijuana or marijuana-related operations based on their illegality under federal law, noting that a contract for an illegal transaction is unenforceable. Thus, if we acquire a business or otherwise pursues a strategic alternative in the cannabis industry, we may have a difficult time obtaining certain insurances that are desired to operate our business, which may expose us to additional risks and financial liabilities.

 

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USE OF PROCEEDS

 

Unless otherwise indicated in a prospectus supplement, we intend to use the net proceeds from these sales for general corporate purposes or the acquisition of other businesses and working capital. The amounts and timing of these expenditures will depend on numerous factors, including the development of our current business initiatives. We have no specific acquisitions contemplated at this time.

 

PLAN OF DISTRIBUTION

 

We may sell the securities from time to time to or through underwriters or dealers, through agents, or directly to one or more purchasers. A distribution of the securities offered by this prospectus may also be effected through the issuance of derivative securities, including without limitation, warrants, rights to purchase and subscriptions. In addition, the manner in which we may sell some or all of the securities covered by this prospectus includes, without limitation, through:

 

    a block trade in which a broker-dealer will attempt to sell as agent, but may position or resell a portion of the block, as principal, in order to facilitate the transaction;
  purchases by a broker-dealer, as principal, and resale by the broker-dealer for its account; or
    ordinary brokerage transactions and transactions in which a broker solicits purchasers.

 

A prospectus supplement or supplements with respect to each series of securities will describe the terms of the offering, including, to the extent applicable:

 

  the terms of the offering;
    the name or names of the underwriters or agents and the amounts of securities underwritten or purchased by each of them, if any;
    the public offering price or purchase price of the securities or other consideration therefor, and the proceeds to be received by us from the sale;
  any delayed delivery requirements;
  any over-allotment options under which underwriters may purchase additional securities from us;
    any underwriting discounts or agency fees and other items constituting underwriters’ or agents’ compensation;
    any discounts or concessions allowed or re-allowed or paid to dealers; and
    any securities exchange or market on which the securities may be listed.

 

The offer and sale of the securities described in this prospectus by us, the underwriters or the third parties described above may be effected from time to time in one or more transactions, including privately negotiated transactions, either:

 

  at a fixed price or prices, which may be changed;
  in an “at the market” offering within the meaning of Rule 415(a)(4) of the Securities Act;
  at prices related to such prevailing market prices; or
  at negotiated prices.

 

Only underwriters named in the prospectus supplement will be underwriters of the securities offered by the prospectus supplement.

 

Underwriters and Agents; Direct Sales

 

If underwriters are used in a sale, they will acquire the offered securities for their own account and may resell the offered securities from time to time in one or more transactions, including negotiated transactions, at a fixed public offering price or at varying prices determined at the time of sale. We may offer the securities to the public through underwriting syndicates represented by managing underwriters or by underwriters without a syndicate.

 

Unless the prospectus supplement states otherwise, the obligations of the underwriters to purchase the securities will be subject to the conditions set forth in the applicable underwriting agreement. Subject to certain conditions, the underwriters will be obligated to purchase all of the securities offered by the prospectus supplement, other than securities covered by any over-allotment option. Any public offering price and any discounts or concessions allowed or re-allowed or paid to dealers may change from time to time. We may use underwriters with whom we have a material relationship. We will describe in the prospectus supplement, naming the underwriter, the nature of any such relationship.

 

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We may sell securities directly or through agents we designate from time to time. We will name any agent involved in the offering and sale of securities, and we will describe any commissions we will pay the agent in the prospectus supplement. Unless the prospectus supplement states otherwise, our agent will act on a best-efforts basis for the period of its appointment.

 

We may authorize agents or underwriters to solicit offers by certain types of institutional investors to purchase securities from us at the public offering price set forth in the prospectus supplement pursuant to delayed delivery contracts providing for payment and delivery on a specified date in the future. We will describe the conditions to these contracts and the commissions we must pay for solicitation of these contracts in the prospectus supplement.

 

Dealers

 

We may sell the offered securities to dealers as principals. The dealer may then resell such securities to the public either at varying prices to be determined by the dealer or at a fixed offering price agreed to with us at the time of resale.

 

Institutional Purchasers

 

We may authorize agents, dealers or underwriters to solicit certain institutional investors to purchase offered securities on a delayed delivery basis pursuant to delayed delivery contracts providing for payment and delivery on a specified future date. The applicable prospectus supplement or other offering materials, as the case may be, will provide the details of any such arrangement, including the offering price and commissions payable on the solicitations.

 

We will enter into such delayed contracts only with institutional purchasers that we approve. These institutions may include commercial and savings banks, insurance companies, pension funds, investment companies and educational and charitable institutions.

 

Indemnification; Other Relationships

 

We may provide agents, underwriters, dealers and remarketing firms with indemnification against certain civil liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act, or contribution with respect to payments that the agents or underwriters may make with respect to these liabilities. Agents, underwriters, dealers and remarketing firms, and their affiliates, may engage in transactions with, or perform services for, us in the ordinary course of business. This includes commercial banking and investment banking transactions.

 

Market-Making; Stabilization and Other Transactions

 

There is currently no market for any of the offered securities, other than our common stock, which is quoted on the NASDAQ Capital Market. If the offered securities are traded after their initial issuance, they may trade at a discount from their initial offering price, depending upon prevailing interest rates, the market for similar securities and other factors. While it is possible that an underwriter could inform us that it intends to make a market in the offered securities, such underwriter would not be obligated to do so, and any such market-making could be discontinued at any time without notice. Therefore, no assurance can be given as to whether an active trading market will develop for the offered securities. We have no current plans for listing of the debt securities, preferred stock, warrants or subscription rights on any securities exchange or quotation system; any such listing with respect to any particular debt securities, preferred stock, warrants or subscription rights will be described in the applicable prospectus supplement or other offering materials, as the case may be.

 

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Any underwriter may engage in over-allotment, stabilizing transactions, short-covering transactions and penalty bids in accordance with Regulation M under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act. Over-allotment involves sales in excess of the offering size, which create a short position. Stabilizing transactions permit bids to purchase the underlying security so long as the stabilizing bids do not exceed a specified maximum price. Syndicate-covering or other short-covering transactions involve purchases of the securities, either through exercise of the over-allotment option or in the open market after the distribution is completed, to cover short positions. Penalty bids permit the underwriters to reclaim a selling concession from a dealer when the securities originally sold by the dealer are purchased in a stabilizing or covering transaction to cover short positions. Those activities may cause the price of the securities to be higher than it would otherwise be. If commenced, the underwriters may discontinue any of the activities at any time.

 

Any underwriters or agents that are qualified market makers on the NASDAQ Capital Market may engage in passive market making transactions in our common stock on the NASDAQ Capital Market in accordance with Regulation M under the Exchange Act, during the business day prior to the pricing of the offering, before the commencement of offers or sales of our common stock. Passive market makers must comply with applicable volume and price limitations and must be identified as passive market makers. In general, a passive market maker must display its bid at a price not in excess of the highest independent bid for such security; if all independent bids are lowered below the passive market maker’s bid, however, the passive market maker’s bid must then be lowered when certain purchase limits are exceeded. Passive market making may stabilize the market price of the securities at a level above that which might otherwise prevail in the open market and, if commenced, may be discontinued at any time.

 

Fees and Commissions

 

If 5% or more of the net proceeds of any offering of securities made under this prospectus will be received by a FINRA member participating in the offering or affiliates or associated persons of such FINRA member, the offering will be conducted in accordance with FINRA Rule 5121.

 

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DESCRIPTION OF SECURITIES WE MAY OFFER

 

General

 

This prospectus describes the general terms of our capital stock. The following description is not complete and may not contain all the information you should consider before investing in our capital stock. For a more detailed description of these securities, you should read the applicable provisions of New Jersey law and our certificate of incorporation, as amended, referred to herein as our certificate of incorporation and our amended and restated bylaws, referred to herein as our bylaws. When we offer to sell a particular series of these securities, we will describe the specific terms of the series in a supplement to this prospectus. Accordingly, for a description of the terms of any series of securities, you must refer to both the prospectus supplement relating to that series and the description of the securities described in this prospectus. To the extent the information contained in the prospectus supplement differs from this summary description, you should rely on the information in the prospectus supplement.

 

The total number of shares of capital stock we are authorized to issue is 550,000,000 shares, of which (a) 500,000,000 are common stock and (b) 50,000,000 are preferred stock.

 

We, directly or through agents, dealers or underwriters designated from time to time, may offer, issue and sell, together or separately, up to $25,000,000 in the aggregate of:

 

  common stock;
  preferred stock;
  ●  purchase contracts;
  ●  warrants to purchase our securities;
  ●  subscription rights to purchase our securities;
  ●  depositary shares;
  ●  secured or unsecured debt securities consisting of notes, debentures or other evidences of indebtedness which may be senior debt securities, senior subordinated debt securities or subordinated debt securities, each of which may be convertible into equity securities; or
  ●  units comprised of, or other combinations of, the foregoing securities.

 

We may issue the debt securities exchangeable for or convertible into shares of common stock, preferred stock or other securities that may be sold by us pursuant to this prospectus or any combination of the foregoing. The preferred stock may also be exchangeable for and/or convertible into shares of common stock, another series of preferred stock or other securities that may be sold by us pursuant to this prospectus or any combination of the foregoing. When a particular series of securities is offered, a supplement to this prospectus will be delivered with this prospectus, which will set forth the terms of the offering and sale of the offered securities.

 

Common Stock

 

As of November 1, 2019, there were 12,508,958 shares of common stock issued and outstanding, held of record by approximately 705 stockholders. Subject to preferential rights with respect to any outstanding preferred stock, all outstanding shares of common stock are of the same class and have equal rights and attributes.

 

Voting Rights

 

Each Stockholder has one vote for each share of common stock held on all matters submitted to a vote of stockholders. A shareholder may vote in person or by proxy. Elections of directors are determined by a plurality of the votes cast and all other matters are decided by a majority of the votes cast by those shareholders entitled to vote and present in person or by proxy.

 

Because our stockholders do not have cumulative voting rights, stockholders holding a majority of the voting power of our shares of common stock will be able to elect all of our directors. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and bylaws provide that stockholder actions may be effected at a duly called meeting of stockholders or pursuant to written consent of the majority of shareholders. A special meeting of stockholders may be called by the President, Chief Executive Officer or the Board of Directors pursuant to a resolution approved by the majority of the Board of Directors.

 

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Dividend Rights

 

The holders of outstanding shares of common stock are entitled to receive dividends out of funds legally available at the times and in the amounts that our board may determine, provided that required dividends, if any, on preferred stock have been paid or provided for. However, to date we have not paid or declared cash distributions or dividends on our common stock and do not currently intend to pay cash dividends on our common stock in the foreseeable future. We intend to retain all earnings, if and when generated, to finance our operations. The declaration of cash dividends in the future will be determined by the board based upon our earnings, financial condition, capital requirements and other relevant factors.

 

No Preemptive or Similar Rights

 

Holders of our common stock do not have preemptive rights, and common stock is not convertible or redeemable.

 

Right to Receive Liquidation Distributions

 

Upon our dissolution, liquidation or winding-up, the assets legally available for distribution to our stockholders and remaining after payment to holders of preferred stock of the amounts, if any, to which they are entitled, are distributable ratably among the holders of our common stock subject to any senior class of securities.

 

Preferred Stock

 

Our certificate of incorporation empowers our board of directors, without action by our shareholders, to issue up to 50,00,000 shares of preferred stock from time to time in one or more series, which preferred stock may be offered by this prospectus and supplements thereto. As of November 1, 2019, there were no shares of preferred stock designated, issued or outstanding. Our board may fix the rights, preferences, privileges, and restrictions of our authorized but undesignated preferred shares, including:

 

We will fix the rights, preferences, privileges and restrictions of the preferred stock of each series in the certificate of designation relating to that series. We will file as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report on Form 8-K that we file with the SEC, the form of any certificate of designation that describes the terms of the series of preferred stock we are offering before the issuance of the related series of preferred stock. This description will include any or all of the following, as required:

 

  the title and stated value;
  the number of shares we are offering;
  the liquidation preference per share;
  the purchase price;
  the dividend rate, period and payment date and method of calculation for dividends;
  whether dividends will be cumulative or non-cumulative and, if cumulative, the date from which dividends will accumulate;
  any contractual limitations on our ability to declare, set aside or pay any dividends;
  the procedures for any auction and remarketing, if any;
  the provisions for a sinking fund, if any;
  the provisions for redemption or repurchase, if applicable, and any restrictions on our ability to exercise those redemption and repurchase rights;
  any listing of the preferred stock on any securities exchange or market;
  ●  whether the preferred stock will be convertible into our common stock, and, if applicable, the conversion price, or how it will be calculated, and the conversion period;

 

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  whether the preferred stock will be exchangeable into debt securities, and, if applicable, the exchange price, or how it will be calculated, and the exchange period;
  voting rights, if any, of the preferred stock;
  ●  preemptive rights, if any;
  ●  restrictions on transfer, sale or other assignment, if any;
  ●  a discussion of any material or special United States federal income tax considerations applicable to the preferred stock;
  ●  the relative ranking and preferences of the preferred stock as to dividend rights and rights if we liquidate, dissolve or wind up our affairs;
  ●  any limitations on issuance of any class or series of preferred stock ranking senior to or on a parity with the series of preferred stock as to dividend rights and rights if we liquidate, dissolve or wind up our affairs; and
  ●  any other specific terms, preferences, rights or limitations of, or restrictions on, the preferred stock.

 

If we issue shares of preferred stock under this prospectus, after receipt of payment therefor, the shares will be fully paid and non-assessable.

 

Our board of directors may authorize the issuance of preferred stock with voting or conversion rights that could adversely affect the voting power or other rights of the holders of our common stock. Preferred stock could be issued quickly with terms designed to delay or prevent a change in control of our Company or make removal of management more difficult. Additionally, the issuance of preferred stock could have the effect of decreasing the market price of our common stock.

 

Purchase Contracts

 

We may issue purchase contracts, representing contracts obligating holders to purchase from us, and us to sell to the holders, a specific or varying number of common stock, preferred stock, warrants, depositary shares, debt securities, warrants or any combination of the above, at a future date or dates. Alternatively, the purchase contracts may obligate us to purchase from holders, and obligate holders to sell to us, a specific or varying number of common stock, preferred stock, warrants, depositary shares, debt securities, or any combination of the above. The price of the securities and other property subject to the purchase contracts may be fixed at the time the purchase contracts are issued or may be determined by reference to a specific formula set forth in the purchase contracts. The purchase contracts may be issued separately or as a part of a unit that consists of (a) a purchase contract and (b) one or more of the other securities that may be sold by us pursuant to this prospectus or any combination of the foregoing, which may secure the holders’ obligations to purchase the securities under the purchase contract. The purchase contracts may require us to make periodic payments to the holders or require the holders to make periodic payments to us. These payments may be unsecured or prefunded and may be paid on a current or on a deferred basis. The purchase contracts may require holders to secure their obligations under the contracts in a manner specified in the applicable prospectus supplement.

 

We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report on Form 8-K that we file with the SEC, forms of the purchase contracts and purchase contract agreement, if any. The applicable prospectus supplement will describe the terms of any purchase contracts in respect of which this prospectus is being delivered, including, to the extent applicable, the following:

 

  whether the purchase contracts obligate the holder or us to purchase or sell, or both purchase and sell, the securities subject to purchase under the purchase contract, and the nature and amount of each of those securities, or the method of determining those amounts;

  whether the purchase contracts are to be prepaid or not;

  whether the purchase contracts are to be settled by delivery, or by reference or linkage to the value, performance or level of the securities subject to purchase under the purchase contract;

  any acceleration, cancellation, termination or other provisions relating to the settlement of the purchase contracts; and

  whether the purchase contracts will be issued in fully registered or global form.

 

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Warrants

 

We may issue warrants to purchase our securities or other rights, including rights to receive payment in cash or securities based on the value, rate or price of one or more specified commodities, currencies, securities or indices, or any combination of the foregoing. Warrants may be issued independently or together with any other securities that may be sold by us pursuant to this prospectus or any combination of the foregoing and may be attached to, or separate from, such securities. To the extent warrants that we issue are to be publicly-traded, each series of such warrants will be issued under a separate warrant agreement to be entered into between us and a warrant agent.

 

We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report on Form 8-K that we file with the SEC, forms of the warrant and warrant agreement, if any. The prospectus supplement relating to any warrants that we may offer will contain the specific terms of the warrants and a description of the material provisions of the applicable warrant agreement, if any. These terms may include the following:

 

  the title of the warrants;
  the price or prices at which the warrants will be issued;
  ●  the designation, amount and terms of the securities or other rights for which the warrants are exercisable;
  ●  the designation and terms of the other securities, if any, with which the warrants are to be issued and the number of warrants issued with each other security;
  the aggregate number of warrants;
  ●  any provisions for adjustment of the number or amount of securities receivable upon exercise of the warrants or the exercise price of the warrants;
  ●  the price or prices at which the securities or other rights purchasable upon exercise of the warrants may be purchased;
  ●  if applicable, the date on and after which the warrants and the securities or other rights purchasable upon exercise of the warrants will be separately transferable;
  ●  a discussion of any material U.S. federal income tax considerations applicable to the exercise of the warrants;
  ●  the date on which the right to exercise the warrants will commence, and the date on which the right will expire;
  ●  the maximum or minimum number of warrants that may be exercised at any time;
  ●  information with respect to book-entry procedures, if any; and
  ●  any other terms of the warrants, including terms, procedures and limitations relating to the exchange and exercise of the warrants.

 

Exercise of Warrants. Each warrant will entitle the holder of warrants to purchase the amount of securities or other rights, at the exercise price stated or determinable in the prospectus supplement for the warrants. Warrants may be exercised at any time up to the close of business on the expiration date shown in the applicable prospectus supplement, unless otherwise specified in such prospectus supplement. After the close of business on the expiration date, if applicable, unexercised warrants will become void. Warrants may be exercised in the manner described in the applicable prospectus supplement. When the warrant holder makes the payment and properly completes and signs the warrant certificate at the corporate trust office of the warrant agent, if any, or any other office indicated in the prospectus supplement, we will, as soon as possible, forward the securities or other rights that the warrant holder has purchased. If the warrant holder exercises less than all of the warrants represented by the warrant certificate, we will issue a new warrant certificate for the remaining warrants.

 

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Subscription Rights

 

We may issue rights to purchase our securities. The rights may or may not be transferable by the persons purchasing or receiving the rights. In connection with any rights offering, we may enter into a standby underwriting or other arrangement with one or more underwriters or other persons pursuant to which such underwriters or other persons would purchase any offered securities remaining unsubscribed for after such rights offering. In connection with a rights offering to holders of our capital stock a prospectus supplement will be distributed to such holders on the record date for receiving rights in the rights offering set by us.

 

We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report on Form 8-K that we file with the SEC, forms of the subscription rights, standby underwriting agreement or other agreements, if any. The prospectus supplement relating to any rights that we offer will include specific terms relating to the offering, including, among other matters:

 

  the date of determining the security holders entitled to the rights distribution;
  the aggregate number of rights issued and the aggregate amount of securities purchasable upon exercise of the rights;
    the exercise price;
    the conditions to completion of the rights offering;
    the date on which the right to exercise the rights will commence and the date on which the rights will expire; and
    any applicable federal income tax considerations.

 

Each right would entitle the holder of the rights to purchase the principal amount of securities at the exercise price set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement. Rights may be exercised at any time up to the close of business on the expiration date for the rights provided in the applicable prospectus supplement. After the close of business on the expiration date, all unexercised rights will become void.

 

Holders may exercise rights as described in the applicable prospectus supplement. Upon receipt of payment and the rights certificate properly completed and duly executed at the corporate trust office of the rights agent, if any, or any other office indicated in the prospectus supplement, we will, as soon as practicable, forward the securities purchasable upon exercise of the rights. If less than all of the rights issued in any rights offering are exercised, we may offer any unsubscribed securities directly to persons other than stockholders, to or through agents, underwriters or dealers or through a combination of such methods, including pursuant to standby underwriting arrangements, as described in the applicable prospectus supplement.

 

Depositary Shares

 

General. We may offer fractional shares of preferred stock, rather than full shares of preferred stock. If we decide to offer fractional shares of our preferred stock, we will issue receipts for depositary shares. Each depositary share will represent a fraction of a share of a particular series of our preferred stock, and the applicable prospectus supplement will indicate that fraction. The shares of preferred stock represented by depositary shares will be deposited under a deposit agreement between us and a depositary that is a bank or trust company that meets certain requirements and is selected by us. The depositary will be specified in the applicable prospectus supplement. Each owner of a depositary share will be entitled to all of the rights and preferences of the preferred stock represented by the depositary share. The depositary shares will be evidenced by depositary receipts issued pursuant to the deposit agreement. Depositary receipts will be distributed to those persons purchasing the fractional shares of our preferred stock in accordance with the terms of the offering. We will file as exhibits to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report on Form 8-K that we file with the SEC, forms of the deposit agreement, form of certificate of designation of underlying preferred stock, form of depositary receipts and any other related agreements.

 

Dividends and Other Distributions. The depositary will distribute all cash dividends or other cash distributions received by it in respect of the preferred stock to the record holders of depositary shares relating to such preferred shares in proportion to the numbers of depositary shares held on the relevant record date.

 

In the event of a distribution other than in cash, the depositary will distribute securities or property received by it to the record holders of depositary shares in proportion to the numbers of depositary shares held on the relevant record date, unless the depositary determines that it is not feasible to make such distribution. In that case, the depositary may make the distribution by such method as it deems equitable and practicable. One such possible method is for the depositary to sell the securities or property and then distribute the net proceeds from the sale as provided in the case of a cash distribution.

 

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Redemption of Depositary Shares. Whenever we redeem the preferred stock, the depositary will redeem a number of depositary shares representing the same number of shares of preferred stock so redeemed. If fewer than all of the depositary shares are to be redeemed, the depositary shares to be redeemed will be selected by lot, pro rata or by any other equitable method as the depositary may determine.

 

Voting of Underlying Shares. Upon receipt of notice of any meeting at which the holders of our preferred stock of any series are entitled to vote, the depositary will mail the information contained in the notice of the meeting to the record holders of the depositary shares relating to that series of preferred stock. Each record holder of the depositary shares on the record date will be entitled to instruct the depositary as to the exercise of the voting rights represented by the number of shares of preferred stock underlying the holder’s depositary shares. The depositary will endeavor, to the extent it is practical to do so, to vote the number of whole shares of preferred stock underlying such depositary shares in accordance with such instructions. We will agree to take all action that the depositary may deem reasonably necessary in order to enable the depositary to do so. To the extent the depositary does not receive specific instructions from the holders of depositary shares relating to such preferred shares, it will abstain from voting such shares of preferred stock.

 

Withdrawal of Shares. Upon surrender of depositary receipts representing any number of whole shares at the depositary’s office, unless the related depositary shares previously have been called for redemption, the holder of the depositary shares evidenced by the depositary receipts will be entitled to delivery of the number of whole shares of the related series of preferred stock and all money and other property, if any, underlying such depositary shares. However, once such an exchange is made, the preferred stock cannot thereafter be re-deposited in exchange for depositary shares. Holders of depositary shares will be entitled to receive whole shares of the related series of preferred stock on the basis set forth in the applicable prospectus supplement. If the depositary receipts delivered by the holder evidence a number of depositary shares representing more than the number of whole shares of preferred stock of the related series to be withdrawn, the depositary will deliver to the holder at the same time a new depositary receipt evidencing the excess number of depositary shares.

 

Amendment and Termination of Depositary Agreement. The form of depositary receipt evidencing the depositary shares and any provision of the applicable depositary agreement may at any time be amended by agreement between us and the depositary. We may, with the consent of the depositary, amend the depositary agreement from time to time in any manner that we desire. However, if the amendment would materially and adversely alter the rights of the existing holders of depositary shares, the amendment would need to be approved by the holders of at least a majority of the depositary shares then outstanding.

 

The depositary agreement may be terminated by us or the depositary if:

 

  all outstanding depositary shares have been redeemed; or

 

  there has been a final distribution in respect of the shares of preferred stock of the applicable series in connection with our liquidation, dissolution or winding up and such distribution has been made to the holders of depositary receipts.

 

Resignation and Removal of Depositary. The depositary may resign at any time by delivering to us notice of its election to do so. We may remove a depositary at any time. Any resignation or removal will take effect upon the appointment of a successor depositary and its acceptance of appointment.

 

Charges of Depositary. We will pay all transfer and other taxes and governmental charges arising solely from the existence of any depositary arrangements. We will pay all charges of each depositary in connection with the initial deposit of the preferred shares of any series, the initial issuance of the depositary shares, any redemption of such preferred shares and any withdrawals of such preferred shares by holders of depositary shares. Holders of depositary shares will be required to pay any other transfer taxes.

 

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Notices. Each depositary will forward to the holders of the applicable depositary shares all notices, reports and communications from us which are delivered to such depositary and which we are required to furnish the holders of the preferred stock represented by such depositary shares.

 

Miscellaneous. The depositary agreement may contain provisions that limit our liability and the liability of the depositary to the holders of depositary shares. Both the depositary and we are also entitled to an indemnity from the holders of the depositary shares prior to bringing, or defending against, any legal proceeding. We or any depositary may rely upon written advice of counsel or accountants, or information provided by persons presenting preferred shares for deposit, holders of depositary shares or other persons believed by us to be competent and on documents believed by us or them to be genuine.

 

Debt Securities

 

As used in this prospectus, the term “debt securities” means the debentures, notes, bonds and other evidences of indebtedness that we may issue from time to time. The debt securities will either be senior debt securities, senior subordinated debt or subordinated debt securities. We may also issue convertible debt securities. Debt securities may be issued under an indenture (which we refer to herein as an Indenture), which are contracts entered into between us and a trustee to be named therein. The Indenture has been filed as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus forms a part. We may issue debt securities and incur additional indebtedness other than through the offering of debt securities pursuant to this prospectus. It is likely that convertible debt securities will not be issued under an Indenture.

 

The debt securities may be fully and unconditionally guaranteed on a secured or unsecured senior or subordinated basis by one or more guarantors, if any. The obligations of any guarantor under its guarantee will be limited as necessary to prevent that guarantee from constituting a fraudulent conveyance under applicable law. In the event that any series of debt securities will be subordinated to other indebtedness that we have outstanding or may incur, the terms of the subordination will be set forth in the prospectus supplement relating to the subordinated debt securities.

 

We may issue debt securities from time to time in one or more series, in each case with the same or various maturities, at par or at a discount. Unless indicated in a prospectus supplement, we may issue additional debt securities of a particular series without the consent of the holders of the debt securities of such series outstanding at the time of the issuance. Any such additional debt securities, together with all other outstanding debt securities of that series, will constitute a single series of debt securities under the applicable Indenture and will be equal in ranking.

 

Should an Indenture relate to unsecured indebtedness, in the event of a bankruptcy or other liquidation event involving a distribution of assets to satisfy our outstanding indebtedness or an event of default under a loan agreement relating to secured indebtedness of our company or its subsidiaries, the holders of such secured indebtedness, if any, would be entitled to receive payment of principal and interest prior to payments on the unsecured indebtedness issued under an Indenture.

 

Each prospectus supplement will describe the terms relating to the specific series of debt securities. These terms will include some or all of the following:

 

  the title of debt securities and whether the debt securities are senior or subordinated;
  any limit on the aggregate principal amount of debt securities of such series;
  ●  the percentage of the principal amount at which the debt securities of any series will be issued;
  ●  the ability to issue additional debt securities of the same series;
  ●  the purchase price for the debt securities and the denominations of the debt securities;
  ●  the specific designation of the series of debt securities being offered;
  the maturity date or dates of the debt securities and the date or dates upon which the debt securities are payable and the rate or rates at which the debt securities of the series shall bear interest, if any, which may be fixed or variable, or the method by which such rate shall be determined;
  the basis for calculating interest;
  ●  the date or dates from which any interest will accrue or the method by which such date or dates will be determined;

 

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  ●  the duration of any deferral period, including the period during which interest payment periods may be extended;
  ●  whether the amount of payments of principal of (and premium, if any) or interest on the debt securities may be determined with reference to any index, formula or other method, such as one or more currencies, commodities, equity indices or other indices, and the manner of determining the amount of such payments;
  ●  the dates on which we will pay interest on the debt securities and the regular record date for determining who is entitled to the interest payable on any interest payment date;
  ●  the place or places where the principal of (and premium, if any) and interest on the debt securities will be payable, where any securities may be surrendered for registration of transfer, exchange or conversion, as applicable, and notices and demands may be delivered to or upon us pursuant to the applicable Indenture;
  ●  the rate or rates of amortization of the debt securities;
  ●  any terms for the attachment to the debt securities of warrants, options or other rights to purchase or sell our securities;
  ●  if the debt securities will be secured by any collateral and, if so, a general description of the collateral and the terms and provisions of such collateral security, pledge or other agreements;
  ●  if we possess the option to do so, the periods within which and the prices at which we may redeem the debt securities, in whole or in part, pursuant to optional redemption provisions, and the other terms and conditions of any such provisions;
  ●  our obligation or discretion, if any, to redeem, repay or purchase debt securities by making periodic payments to a sinking fund or through an analogous provision or at the option of holders of the debt securities, and the period or periods within which and the price or prices at which we will redeem, repay or purchase the debt securities, in whole or in part, pursuant to such obligation, and the other terms and conditions of such obligation;
  ●  the terms and conditions, if any, regarding the option or mandatory conversion or exchange of debt securities;
  ●  the period or periods within which, the price or prices at which and the terms and conditions upon which any debt securities of the series may be redeemed, in whole or in part at our option and, if other than by a board resolution, the manner in which any election by us to redeem the debt securities shall be evidenced;
  any restriction or condition on the transferability of the debt securities of a particular series;
  ●  the portion, or methods of determining the portion, of the principal amount of the debt securities which we must pay upon the acceleration of the maturity of the debt securities in connection with any event of default;
  ●  the currency or currencies in which the debt securities will be denominated and in which principal, any premium and any interest will or may be payable or a description of any units based on or relating to a currency or currencies in which the debt securities will be denominated;
  provisions, if any, granting special rights to holders of the debt securities upon the occurrence of specified events;
  ●  any deletions from, modifications of or additions to the events of default or our covenants with respect to the applicable series of debt securities, and whether or not such events of default or covenants are consistent with those contained in the applicable Indenture;
  any limitation on our ability to incur debt, redeem stock, sell our assets or other restrictions;
  ●  the application, if any, of the terms of the applicable Indenture relating to defeasance and covenant defeasance (which terms are described below) to the debt securities;
  ●  what subordination provisions will apply to the debt securities
  the terms, if any, upon which the holders may convert or exchange the debt securities into or for our securities or property;
  ●  whether we are issuing the debt securities in whole or in part in global form;
  ●  any change in the right of the trustee or the requisite holders of debt securities to declare the principal amount thereof due and payable because of an event of default;

 

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  ●  the depositary for global or certificated debt securities, if any;
  ●  any material federal income tax consequences applicable to the debt securities, including any debt securities denominated and made payable, as described in the prospectus supplements, in foreign currencies, or units based on or related to foreign currencies;
  ●  any right we may have to satisfy, discharge and defease our obligations under the debt securities, or terminate or eliminate restrictive covenants or events of default in the Indentures, by depositing money or U.S. government obligations with the trustee of the Indentures;
  ●  the names of any trustees, depositories, authenticating or paying agents, transfer agents or registrars or other agents with respect to the debt securities;
  ●  to whom any interest on any debt security shall be payable, if other than the person in whose name the security is registered, on the record date for such interest, the extent to which, or the manner in which, any interest payable on a temporary global debt security will be paid;
  ●  if the principal of or any premium or interest on any debt securities is to be payable in one or more currencies or currency units other than as stated, the currency, currencies or currency units in which it shall be paid and the periods within and terms and conditions upon which such election is to be made and the amounts payable (or the manner in which such amount shall be determined);
  ●  the portion of the principal amount of any debt securities which shall be payable upon declaration of acceleration of the maturity of the debt securities pursuant to the applicable Indenture;
  ●  if the principal amount payable at the stated maturity of any debt security of the series will not be determinable as of any one or more dates prior to the stated maturity, the amount which shall be deemed to be the principal amount of such debt securities as of any such date for any purpose, including the principal amount thereof which shall be due and payable upon any maturity other than the stated maturity or which shall be deemed to be outstanding as of any date prior to the stated maturity (or, in any such case, the manner in which such amount deemed to be the principal amount shall be determined); and
  ●  any other specific terms of the debt securities, including any modifications to the events of default under the debt securities and any other terms which may be required by or advisable under applicable laws or regulations.

 

Unless otherwise specified in the applicable prospectus supplement, we do not anticipate the debt securities will be listed on any securities exchange. Holders of the debt securities may present registered debt securities for exchange or transfer in the manner described in the applicable prospectus supplement. Except as limited by the applicable Indenture, we will provide these services without charge, other than any tax or other governmental charge payable in connection with the exchange or transfer.

 

Debt securities may bear interest at a fixed rate or a variable rate as specified in the prospectus supplement. In addition, if specified in the prospectus supplement, we may sell debt securities bearing no interest or interest a t a rate that at the time of issuance is below the prevailing market rate, or at a discount below their stated principal amount. We will describe in the applicable prospectus supplement any special federal income tax considerations applicable to these discounted debt securities.

 

We may issue debt securities with the principal amount payable on any principal payment date, or the amount of interest payable on any interest payment date, to be determined by referring to one or more currency exchange rates, commodity prices, equity indices or other factors. Holders of such debt securities may receive a principal amount on any principal payment date, or interest payments on any interest payment date, that are greater or less than the amount of principal or interest otherwise payable on such dates, depending upon the value on such dates of applicable currency, commodity, equity index or other factors. The applicable prospectus supplement will contain information as to how we will determine the amount of principal or interest payable on any date, as well as the currencies, commodities, equity indices or other factors to which the amount payable on that date relates and certain additional tax considerations.

 

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Units

 

We may issue units consisting of any combination of the other types of securities offered under this prospectus in one or more series. We may evidence each series of units by unit certificates that we may issue under a separate agreement. We may enter into unit agreements with a unit agent. Each unit agent, if any, may be a bank or trust company that we select. We will indicate the name and address of the unit agent, if any, in the applicable prospectus supplement relating to a particular series of units. Specific unit agreements, if any, will contain additional important terms and provisions. We will file as an exhibit to the registration statement of which this prospectus is a part, or will incorporate by reference from a current report that we file with the SEC, the form of unit and the form of each unit agreement, if any, relating to units offered under this prospectus.

 

If we offer any units, certain terms of that series of units will be described in the applicable prospectus supplement, including, without limitation, the following, as applicable:

 

  the title of the series of units;
  identification and description of the separate constituent securities comprising the units;
  ●  the price or prices at which the units will be issued;
  ●  the date, if any, on and after which the constituent securities comprising the units will be separately transferable;
  ●  a discussion of certain United States federal income tax considerations applicable to the units; and
  ●  any other material terms of the units and their constituent securities.

 

Anti-Takeover Provisions

 

The authorization of undesignated preferred stock makes it possible for our board of directors to issue preferred stock with voting or other rights or preferences that could impede the success of any attempt to change our control.

 

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 also designed to reduce our vulnerability to an unsolicited acquisition proposal and 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 may have the effect of deterring hostile takeovers or delaying changes in our control or management. As a consequence, these provisions also may inhibit fluctuations in the market price of our stock that could result from actual or rumored takeover attempts.

 

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FORMS OF SECURITIES

 

Each security may be represented either by a certificate issued in definitive form to a particular investor or by one or more global securities representing the entire issuance of securities. Certificated securities in definitive form and global securities will be issued in registered form. Definitive securities name you or your nominee as the owner of the security, and in order to transfer or exchange these securities or to receive payments other than interest or other interim payments, you or your nominee must physically deliver the securities to the trustee, registrar, paying agent or other agent, as applicable. Global securities name a depositary or its nominee as the owner of the debt securities, warrants or units represented by these global securities. The depositary maintains a computerized system that will reflect each investor’s beneficial ownership of the securities through an account maintained by the investor with its broker/dealer, bank, trust company or other representative, as we explain more fully below.

 

Registered Global Securities

 

We may issue the securities in the form of one or more fully registered global securities that will be deposited with a depositary or its nominee identified in the applicable prospectus supplement and registered in the name of that depositary or nominee. In those cases, one or more registered global securities will be issued in a denomination or aggregate denominations equal to the portion of the aggregate principal or face amount of the securities to be represented by registered global securities. Unless and until it is exchanged in whole for securities in definitive registered form, a registered global security may not be transferred except as a whole by and among the depositary for the registered global security, the nominees of the depositary or any successors of the depositary or those nominees.

 

The specific terms of the depositary arrangement with respect to any securities to be represented by a registered global security will be described in the prospectus supplement relating to those securities. We anticipate that the following provisions will apply to all depositary arrangements.

 

Ownership of beneficial interests in a registered global security will be limited to persons, called participants, that have accounts with the depositary or persons that may hold interests through participants. Upon the issuance of a registered global security, the depositary will credit, on its book-entry registration and transfer system, the participants’ accounts with the respective principal or face amounts of the securities beneficially owned by the participants. Any dealers, underwriters or agents participating in the distribution of the securities will designate the accounts to be credited. Ownership of beneficial interests in a registered global security will be shown on, and the transfer of ownership interests will be effected only through, records maintained by the depositary, with respect to interests of participants, and on the records of participants, with respect to interests of persons holding through participants. The laws of some states may require that some purchasers of securities take physical delivery of these securities in definitive form. These laws may impair your ability to own, transfer or pledge beneficial interests in registered global securities.

 

So long as the depositary, or its nominee, is the registered owner of a registered global security, that depositary or its nominee, as the case may be, will be considered the sole owner or holder of the securities represented by the registered global security for all purposes under the applicable indenture, warrant agreement or unit agreement.

 

Except as described below, owners of beneficial interests in a registered global security will not be entitled to have the securities represented by the registered global security registered in their names, will not receive or be entitled to receive physical delivery of the securities in definitive form and will not be considered the owners or holders of the securities under the applicable indenture, warrant agreement or unit agreement. Accordingly, each person owning a beneficial interest in a registered global security must rely on the procedures of the depositary for that registered global security and, if that person is not a participant, on the procedures of the participant through which the person owns its interest, to exercise any rights of a holder under the applicable indenture, warrant agreement or unit agreement. We understand that under existing industry practices, if we request any action of holders or if an owner of a beneficial interest in a registered global security desires to give or take any action that a holder is entitled to give or take under the applicable indenture, warrant agreement or unit agreement, the depositary for the registered global security would authorize the participants holding the relevant beneficial interests to give or take that action, and the participants would authorize beneficial owners owning through them to give or take that action or would otherwise act upon the instructions of beneficial owners holding through them.

 

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Payments to holders with respect to securities represented by a registered global security registered in the name of a depositary or its nominee will be made to the depositary or its nominee, as the case may be, as the registered owner of the registered global security. None of the Company, the trustees, the warrant agents, the unit agents or any other agent of the Company, agent of the trustees, the warrant agents or unit agents will have any responsibility or liability for any aspect of the records relating to payments made on account of beneficial ownership interests in the registered global security or for maintaining, supervising or reviewing any records relating to those beneficial ownership interests.

 

We expect that the depositary for any of the securities represented by a registered global security, upon receipt of any payment of principal, premium, interest or other payment or distribution to holders of that registered global security, will immediately credit participants’ accounts in amounts proportionate to their respective beneficial interests in that registered global security as shown on the records of the depositary. We also expect that payments by participants to owners of beneficial interests in a registered global security held through participants will be governed by standing customer instructions and customary practices, as is now the case with the securities held for the accounts of customers or registered in “street name,” and will be the responsibility of those participants.

 

If the depositary for any of these securities represented by a registered global security is at any time unwilling or unable to continue as depositary or ceases to be a clearing agency registered under the Exchange Act and a successor depositary registered as a clearing agency under the Exchange Act is not appointed by us within 90 days, we will issue securities in definitive form in exchange for the registered global security that had been held by the depositary. Any securities issued in definitive form in exchange for a registered global security will be registered in the name or names that the depositary gives to the relevant trustee, warrant agent, unit agent or other relevant agent of ours or theirs. It is expected that the depositary’s instructions will be based upon directions received by the depositary from participants with respect to ownership of beneficial interests in the registered global security that had been held by the depositary.

 

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LEGAL MATTERS

 

Unless otherwise indicated in the applicable prospectus supplement, the validity of the securities offered by this prospectus will be passed upon for us by Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP, New York, New York. If legal matters in connection with offerings made by this prospectus are passed on by counsel for the underwriters, dealers or agents, if any, that counsel will be named in the applicable prospectus supplement.

 

EXPERTS

 

Morison Cogen LLP, independent registered public accounting firm, has audited our consolidated financial statements included in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018, as filed on April 1, 2019, as set forth in their report which is incorporated by reference in this prospectus and elsewhere in the registration statement. Our consolidated financial statements are incorporated by reference in reliance on Morison Cogen LLP’s report, given on their authority as experts in accounting and auditing.

 

WHERE YOU CAN FIND ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

We file annual, quarter and periodic reports, proxy statements and other information with the Securities and Exchange Commission using the Commission’s EDGAR system. The Commission maintains a web site that contains reports, proxy and information statements and other information regarding registrants that file electronically with the Commission. The address of such site is http//www.sec.gov.

 

INCORPORATION OF DOCUMENTS BY REFERENCE

 

We are “incorporating by reference” in this prospectus certain documents we file with the SEC, which means that we can disclose important information to you by referring you to those documents. The information in the documents incorporated by reference is considered to be part of this prospectus. Statements contained in documents that we file with the SEC and that are incorporated by reference in this prospectus will automatically update and supersede information contained in this prospectus, including information in previously filed documents or reports that have been incorporated by reference in this prospectus, to the extent the new information differs from or is inconsistent with the old information. We have filed or may file the following documents with the SEC and they are incorporated herein by reference as of their respective dates of filing.

 

  1. Our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2018, filed with the SEC on April 1, 2019;
  2. Our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q for the quarters ended March 31, 2019 and June 30, 2019, as filed with the SEC on May 20, 2019 and August 14, 2019, respectively;
  3. Our Definitive Proxy Statement on Schedule 14A filed with the SEC on February 5, 2019;
  4. Our Current Reports on Form 8-K filed with the SEC on March 5, 2019, May 16, 2019, June 21, 2019, September 25, 2019, and November 1, 2019 (other than any portions thereof deemed furnished and not filed); and
  5. The description of our common stock contained in our Registration Statement on Form 8-A, filed on January 17, 2014 pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Exchange Act, which incorporates by reference the description of the shares of our common stock contained in the section entitled “Description of Securities” in our Registration Statement on Form S-1 (File No. 333-190456), as initially filed with the SEC on August 7, 2013, as amended, and any amendment or report filed with the SEC for purposes of updating such description.

 

All documents that we filed with the SEC pursuant to Sections 13(a), 13(c), 14, and 15(d) of the Exchange Act subsequent to the date of this registration statement and prior to the filing of a post-effective amendment to this registration statement that indicates that all securities offered under this prospectus have been sold, or that deregisters all securities then remaining unsold, will be deemed to be incorporated in this registration statement by reference and to be a part hereof from the date of filing of such documents.

 

Any statement contained in a document incorporated or deemed to be incorporated by reference in this prospectus shall be deemed modified, superseded or replaced for purposes of this prospectus to the extent that a statement contained in this prospectus, or in any subsequently filed document that also is deemed to be incorporated by reference in this prospectus, modifies, supersedes or replaces such statement. Any statement so modified, superseded or replaced shall not be deemed, except as so modified, superseded or replaced, to constitute a part of this prospectus. None of the information that we disclose under Items 2.02 or 7.01 of any Current Report on Form 8-K or any corresponding information, either furnished under Item 9.01 or included as an exhibit therein, that we may from time to time furnish to the SEC will be incorporated by reference into, or otherwise included in, this prospectus, except as otherwise expressly set forth in the relevant document. Subject to the foregoing, all information appearing in this prospectus is qualified in its entirety by the information appearing in the documents incorporated by reference.

 

You may requests, orally or in writing, a copy of these documents, which will be provided to you at no cost (other than exhibits, unless such exhibits are specifically incorporate by reference), by contacting Akers Biosciences, Inc., at 201 Grove Road, Thorofare, New Jersey 08086. Our telephone number is (856) 848-8698. Information about us is also available at our website at http://www.akersbio.com. However, the information in our website is not a part of this prospectus and is not incorporated by reference.

 

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PART II

 

INFORMATION NOT REQUIRED IN PROSPECTUS

 

Item 14. Other Expenses of Issuance and Distribution. 

 

The Company is paying all expenses of the offering. The following table sets forth all expenses to be paid by the registrant. All amounts shown are estimates except for the registration fee.

 

SEC registration fee   $ 3,245  
Legal fees and expenses   $ 25,000  
Accounting fees and expenses   $ 3,500  
Trustees’ Fees and Expenses     *  
Warrant Agent Fees and Expenses     *  
Miscellaneous     *  
Total   $ 31,745  

 

* These fees are calculated based on the securities offered and the number of issuances and accordingly cannot be estimated at this time. The applicable prospectus supplement will set forth the estimated amount of expenses of any offering of securities.

 

Item 15. Indemnification of Directors and Officers.

 

Section 14A:2-7(3) of the New Jersey Business Corporation Act permits a corporation to provide in its certificate of incorporation that a director or officer shall not be personally liable, or shall be liable only to the extent therein provided, to the corporation or its shareholders for damages for breach of any duty owed to the corporation or its shareholders, except that such provision shall not relieve a director or officer from liability for any breach of duty based upon an act or omission (a) in breach of such person’s duty of loyalty to the corporation or its shareholders, (b) not in good faith or involving a knowing violation of law or (c) resulting in receipt by such person of an improper personal benefit. Akers Biosciences, Inc.’s certificate of incorporation provides for such limitation of liability.

 

Section 14A:3-5 of the New Jersey Business Corporation Act empowers a corporation to indemnify any current or former director or officer made a party to a proceeding because he or she is or was a director or officer against liability incurred in the proceeding; provided that such director or officer acted in good faith and in a manner he reasonably believed to be in or not opposed to the best interests of the corporation and, with respect to any criminal proceeding, such director or officer had no reasonable cause to believe his conduct was unlawful.

 

Akers Biosciences, Inc.’s certificate of incorporation provides that the corporation must indemnify its directors and officers to the fullest extent authorized by law. Akers Biosciences, Inc. is also expressly required to advance certain expenses to its directors and officers. Akers Biosciences, Inc. believes that these indemnification provisions are useful to attract and retain qualified directors and executive officers.

 

Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act of 1933 may be permitted to directors, officers or persons controlling us pursuant to the foregoing provisions, we have been informed that, in the opinion of the SEC, this indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act and is therefore unenforceable.

 

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Item 16. Exhibits.

 

The following exhibits are filed with this Registration Statement.

 

The agreements included or incorporated by reference as exhibits to this registration statement contain representations and warranties by each of the parties to the applicable agreement. These representations and warranties were made solely for the benefit of the other parties to the applicable agreement and (i) were not intended to be treated as categorical statements of fact, but rather as a way of allocating the risk to one of the parties if those statements prove to be inaccurate; (ii) may have been qualified in such agreement by disclosures that were made to the other party in connection with the negotiation of the applicable agreement; (iii) may apply contract standards of “materiality” that are different from “materiality” under the applicable securities laws; and (iv) were made only as of the date of the applicable agreement or such other date or dates as may be specified in the agreement.

 

The undersigned registrant acknowledges that, notwithstanding the inclusion of the foregoing cautionary statements, it is responsible for considering whether additional specific disclosures of material information regarding material contractual provisions are required to make the statements in this registration statement not misleading.

 

Exhibit    
Number   Description of Document
     
1.1   Form of Underwriting Agreement**
4.1   Form of Certificate of Designation of Preferred Stock**
4.2   Form of Stock Purchase Contract**
4.3   Form of Warrant Agreement and Form of Warrant Certificate**
4.4   Form of Subscription Rights Agreement and Form Subscription Rights Certificate**
4.5   Form of Indenture*
4.6   Form of Note**
4.7   Form of Debt Securities**
5.1   Opinion of Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP*
12.1   Computation of Ratio of Earnings to Fixed Charges**
23.1   Consent of Morison Cogen LLP*
23.2   Consent of Ellenoff Grossman & Schole LLP (included in Exhibit 5.1)*
24.1   Power of Attorney (included in Part II of this Registration Statement)*
25.1   Statement of Eligibility of trustee on Form T-1**+

 

* Filed herewith.
   
**         If applicable, to be filed by an amendment or as an exhibit to a report pursuant to section 13(a) or section 15(d) of the Exchange Act and incorporated by reference
   
+ To be filed pursuant to Rule 305(b)(2) of the Trust Indenture Act.

 

Item 17. Undertakings.

 

(a) The undersigned Registrant hereby undertakes:

 

(1)       To file, during any period in which offers or sales are being made, a post-effective amendment to this registration statement:

 

(i)       to include any prospectus required by Section 10(a)(3) of the Securities Act of 1933;

 

(ii)       to reflect in the prospectus any facts or events arising after the effective date of the registration statement (or the most recent post-effective amendment thereof) which, individually or in the aggregate, represent a fundamental change in the information set forth in the registration statement. Notwithstanding the foregoing, any increase or decrease in volume of securities offered (if the total dollar value of securities offered would not exceed that which was registered) and any deviation from the low or high end of the estimated maximum offering range may be reflected in the form of prospectus filed with the Commission pursuant to Rule 424(b) if, in the aggregate, the changes in volume and price represent no more than a 20% change in the maximum aggregate offering price set forth in the “Calculation of Registration Fee” table in the effective registration statement; and

 

35
 

 

(iii)       to include any material information with respect to the plan of distribution not previously disclosed in the registration statement or any material change to such information in the registration statement;

 

provided , however , that paragraphs (1)(i), (1)(ii) and (1)(iii) do not apply if the information required to be included in a post-effective amendment by those paragraphs is contained in reports filed with or furnished to the Commission by the registrant pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 that are incorporated by reference in the registration statement, or is contained in a form of prospectus filed pursuant to Rule 424(b) that is part of the registration statement.

 

(2)       That, for the purpose of determining any liability under the Securities Act of 1933, each such post-effective amendment shall be deemed to be a new registration statement relating to the securities offered therein, and the offering of such securities at that time shall be deemed to be the initial bona fide offering thereof.

 

(3)       To remove from registration by means of a post-effective amendment any of the securities being registered which remain unsold at the termination of the offering.

 

(4)       That, for the purpose of determining liability under the Securities Act of 1933 to any purchaser:

 

(i)       Each prospectus filed by the registrant pursuant to Rule 424(b)(3) shall be deemed to be part of the registration statement as of the date the filed prospectus was deemed part of and included in the registration statement; and

 

(ii)       Each prospectus required to be filed pursuant to Rule 424(b)(2), (b)(5), or (b)(7) as part of a registration statement in reliance on Rule 430B relating to an offering made pursuant to Rule 415(a)(1)(i), (vii), or (x) for the purpose of providing the information required by Section 10(a) of the Securities Act of 1933 shall be deemed to be part of and included in the registration statement as of the earlier of the date such form of prospectus is first used after effectiveness or the date of the first contract of sale of securities in the offering described in the prospectus. As provided in Rule 430B, for liability purposes of the issuer and any person that is at that date an underwriter, such date shall be deemed to be a new effective date of the registration statement relating to the securities in the registration statement to which that prospectus relates, and the offering of such securities at that time shall be deemed to be the initial bona fide offering thereof. Provided, however, that no statement made in a registration statement or prospectus that is part of the registration statement or made in a document incorporated or deemed incorporated by reference into the registration statement or prospectus that is part of the registration statement will, as to a purchaser with a time of contract of sale prior to such effective date, supersede or modify any statement that was made in the registration statement or prospectus that was part of the registration statement or made in any such document immediately prior to such effective date.

 

(5)       That, for the purpose of determining liability of the registrant under the Securities Act of 1933 to any purchaser in the initial distribution of the securities, the undersigned registrant undertakes that in a primary offering of securities of the undersigned registrant pursuant to this registration statement, regardless of the underwriting method used to sell the securities to the purchaser, if the securities are offered or sold to such purchaser by means of any of the following communications, the undersigned registrant will be a seller to the purchaser and will be considered to offer or sell such securities to such purchaser:

 

(i)       Any preliminary prospectus or prospectus of the undersigned registrant relating to the offering required to be filed pursuant to Rule 424;

 

(ii)       Any free writing prospectus relating to the offering prepared by or on behalf of the undersigned registrant or used or referred to by the undersigned registrant;

 

(iii)       The portion of any other free writing prospectus relating to the offering containing material information about the undersigned registrant or its securities provided by or on behalf of the undersigned registrant; and

 

36
 

 

(iv)       Any other communication that is an offer in the offering made by the undersigned registrant to the purchaser.

 

(b)       The undersigned registrant hereby undertakes that, for purposes of determining any liability of the registrant under the Securities Act of 1933, each filing of the registrant’s annual report pursuant to Section 13(a) or Section 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (and, where applicable, each filing of an employee benefit plan’s annual report pursuant to section 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934) that is incorporated by reference in the registration statement shall be deemed to be a new registration statement relating to the securities offered therein, and the offering of such securities at that time shall be deemed to be the initial bona fide offering thereof.

 

(c)       The undersigned registrant hereby undertakes to supplement the prospectus, after the expiration of the subscription period, to set forth the results of the subscription offer, the transactions by the underwriters during the subscription period, the amount of unsubscribed securities to be purchased by the underwriters, and the terms of any subsequent reoffering thereof. If any public offering by the underwriters is to be made on terms differing from those set forth on the cover page of the prospectus, a post-effective amendment will be filed to set forth the terms of such offering.

 

(d)       Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act of 1933 may be permitted to directors, officers and controlling persons of the registrant pursuant to the foregoing provisions, or otherwise, the registrant has been advised that in the opinion of the Securities and Exchange Commission such indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act and is, therefore, unenforceable. In the event that a claim for indemnification against such liabilities (other than the payment by the registrant of expenses incurred or paid by a director, officer or controlling person of the registrant in the successful defense of any action, suit or proceeding) is asserted by such director, officer or controlling person in connection with the securities being registered, the registrant will, unless in the opinion of its counsel the matter has been settled by controlling precedent, submit to a court of appropriate jurisdiction the question whether such indemnification by it is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act of 1933 and will be governed by the final adjudication of such issue.

 

(e)       The undersigned registrant hereby undertakes to file an application for the purpose of determining the eligibility of the trustee to act under subsection (a) of Section 310 of the Trust Indenture Act in accordance with the rules and regulations prescribed by the Commission under Section 305(b)(2) of the Trust Indenture Act.

 

37
 

 

SIGNATURES

 

Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, the Registrant has duly caused this Registration Statement to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned, thereunto duly authorized, in the State of New Jersey, on this November 1, 2019.

 

  AKERS BIOSCIENCES, INC.
   
  By: /s/ Christopher C. Schreiber
    Christopher C. Schreiber
   

Executive Chairman of the Board and Director

(Principal Executive Officer) and Director

 

KNOW ALL PERSONS BY THESE PRESENTS that each individual whose signature appears below hereby constitutes and appoints Christopher C. Schreiber as his or her true and lawful attorney-in-fact and agent with full power of substitution, for him or her and in his or her name, place and stead, in any and all capacities, to sign any and all amendments, including post-effective amendments, to this registration statement, and to sign any registration statement for the same offering covered by this registration statement that is to be effective upon filing pursuant to Rule 462(b) promulgated under the Securities Act of 1933 increasing the number of shares for which registration is sought, and all post-effective amendments thereto, and to file the same, with all exhibits thereto and all documents in connection therewith, making such changes in this registration statement as such attorney-in-fact and agent so acting deem appropriate, with the SEC, granting unto said attorney-in-fact and agent, and each of them, full power and authority to do and perform each and every act and thing requisite and necessary to be done with respect to the offering of securities contemplated by this registration statement, as fully to all intents and purposes as he or she might or could do in person, hereby ratifying and confirming all that said attorney-in-fact and agent, or his, her or their substitute or substitutes, may lawfully do or cause to be done or by virtue hereof.

 

Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, this Registration Statement has been signed by the following persons in the capacities and on the dates indicated.

 

Signature   Title   Date
         
/s/ Howard R. Yeaton   Chief Executive Officer and Interim Chief Financial Officer   November 1, 2019
Howard R. Yeaton   (Principal Financial Officer and Principal Accounting Officer)    
         
/s/ Christopher C. Schreiber   Executive Chairman of the Board and Director   November 1, 2019
Christopher C. Schreiber   (Principal Executive Officer)    
         
/s/ Joshua Silverman   Independent Director   November 1, 2019
Joshua Silverman        
         
/s/ Bill J. White   Independent Director   November 1, 2019

 

38
 

 

 

Exhibit 4.5

 

AKERS BIOSCIENCES, INC.

 

and

 

                                                                                      , as Trustee

 

FORM OF INDENTURE

 

Dated as of             ,            

 

 
 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

      PAGE
ARTICLE 1        DEFINITIONS AND INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE 1
     
  1.1. DEFINITIONS 1
       
  1.2. OTHER DEFINITIONS 5
       
  1.3. INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE OF TRUST INDENTURE ACT 6
       
  1.4. RULES OF CONSTRUCTION 6
       
ARTICLE 2        THE SECURITIES 6
     
  2.1. ISSUABLE IN SERIES 6
       
  2.2. ESTABLISHMENT OF TERMS OF SERIES OF SECURITIES 7
       
  2.3. EXECUTION AND AUTHENTICATION 9
       
  2.4. REGISTRAR AND PAYING AGENT 9
       
  2.5. PAYING AGENT TO HOLD ASSETS IN TRUST 10
       
  2.6. SECURITYHOLDER LISTS 10
       
  2.7. TRANSFER AND EXCHANGE 11
       
  2.8. REPLACEMENT SECURITIES 11
       
  2.9. OUTSTANDING SECURITIES 11
       
  2.10. WHEN TREASURY SECURITIES DISREGARDED; DETERMINATION OF HOLDERS’ ACTION 12
       
  2.11. TEMPORARY SECURITIES 12
       
  2.12. CANCELLATION 12
       
  2.13. PAYMENT OF INTEREST; DEFAULTED INTEREST; COMPUTATION OF INTEREST 12
       
  2.14. CUSIP NUMBER 13
       
  2.15. PROVISIONS FOR GLOBAL SECURITIES 13
       
  2.16. PERSONS DEEMED OWNERS 14
       
ARTICLE 3        REDEMPTION 14
     
  3.1. NOTICES TO TRUSTEE 14
       
  3.2. SELECTION BY TRUSTEE OF SECURITIES TO BE REDEEMED 14

 

i
 

 

  3.3. NOTICE OF REDEMPTION 15
       
  3.4. EFFECT OF NOTICE OF REDEMPTION 16
       
  3.5. DEPOSIT OF REDEMPTION PRICE 16
       
  3.6. SECURITIES REDEEMED IN PART 16
       
ARTICLE 4        COVENANTS 16
     
  4.1. PAYMENT OF SECURITIES 16
       
  4.2. SEC REPORTS 17
       
  4.3. COMPLIANCE CERTIFICATE 17
       
  4.4. CORPORATE EXISTENCE 17
       
ARTICLE 5        SUCCESSOR CORPORATION 18
     
  5.1.  LIMITATION ON CONSOLIDATION, MERGER AND SALE OF ASSETS 18
       
  5.2.  SUCCESSOR PERSON SUBSTITUTED 18
       
ARTICLE 6        DEFAULTS AND REMEDIES 18
     
  6.1. EVENTS OF DEFAULT 18
       
  6.2. ACCELERATION 19
       
  6.3. REMEDIES 20
       
  6.4. WAIVER OF PAST DEFAULTS AND EVENTS OF DEFAULT 20
       
  6.5. CONTROL BY MAJORITY 20
       
  6.6. LIMITATION ON SUITS 20
       
  6.7. RIGHTS OF HOLDERS TO RECEIVE PAYMENT 21
       
  6.8. COLLECTION SUIT BY TRUSTEE 21
       
  6.9. TRUSTEE MAY FILE PROOFS OF CLAIM 21
       
  6.10. PRIORITIES 22
       
  6.11. UNDERTAKING FOR COSTS 22
       
ARTICLE 7        TRUSTEE 22
     
  7.1 DUTIES OF TRUSTEE 22
       
  7.2. RIGHTS OF TRUSTEE 23
       
  7.3. INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS OF TRUSTEE 24

 

ii
 

 

  7.4. TRUSTEE’S DISCLAIMER 24
       
  7.5. NOTICE OF DEFAULT 24
       
  7.6. REPORTS BY TRUSTEE TO HOLDERS 25
       
  7.7. COMPENSATION AND INDEMNITY 25
       
  7.8. REPLACEMENT OF TRUSTEE 25
       
  7.9. SUCCESSOR TRUSTEE BY CONSOLIDATION, MERGER OR CONVERSION 26
       
  7.10. ELIGIBILITY; DISQUALIFICATION 26
       
  7.11. PREFERENTIAL COLLECTION OF CLAIMS AGAINST COMPANY 26
       
  7.12. PAYING AGENTS 27
       
ARTICLE 8        AMENDMENTS, SUPPLEMENTS AND WAIVERS 27
     
  8.1. WITHOUT CONSENT OF HOLDERS 27
       
  8.2. WITH CONSENT OF HOLDERS 28
       
  8.3. COMPLIANCE WITH TRUST INDENTURE ACT 29
       
  8.4. REVOCATION AND EFFECT OF CONSENTS 29
       
  8.5. NOTATION ON OR EXCHANGE OF SECURITIES 29
       
  8.6. TRUSTEE TO SIGN AMENDMENTS, ETC. 29
       
ARTICLE 9        DISCHARGE OF INDENTURE; DEFEASANCE 30
     
  9.1. DISCHARGE OF INDENTURE 30
       
  9.2. LEGAL DEFEASANCE 30
       
  9.3. COVENANT DEFEASANCE 30
       
  9.4. CONDITIONS TO LEGAL DEFEASANCE OR COVENANT DEFEASANCE 31
       
  9.5. DEPOSITED MONEY AND U.S. AND FOREIGN GOVERNMENT OBLIGATIONS TO BE HELD IN TRUST; OTHER MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS 32
       
  9.6. REINSTATEMENT 32
       
  9.7. MONEYS HELD BY PAYING AGENT 32
       
  9.8. MONEYS HELD BY TRUSTEE 33
       
ARTICLE 10        MISCELLANEOUS 33
     
  10.1. TRUST INDENTURE ACT CONTROLS 33

 

iii
 

 

  10.2. NOTICES 33
       
  10.3. COMMUNICATIONS BY HOLDERS WITH OTHER HOLDERS 34
       
  10.4. CERTIFICATE AND OPINION AS TO CONDITIONS PRECEDENT 34
       
  10.5. STATEMENT REQUIRED IN CERTIFICATE AND OPINION 35
       
  10.6. RULES BY TRUSTEE AND AGENTS 35
       
  10.7. BUSINESS DAYS; LEGAL HOLIDAYS; PLACE OF PAYMENT 35
       
  10.8. GOVERNING LAW 35
       
  10.9. NO ADVERSE INTERPRETATION OF OTHER AGREEMENTS 35
       
  10.10. NO RECOURSE AGAINST OTHERS 35
       
  10.11. SUCCESSORS 36
       
  10.12. MULTIPLE COUNTERPARTS 36
       
  10.13. TABLE OF CONTENTS, HEADINGS, ETC. 36
       
  10.14. SEVERABILITY 36
       
  10.15. SECURITIES IN A FOREIGN CURRENCY OR IN EUROS 36
       
  10.16. JUDGMENT CURRENCY 37

 

CROSS-REFERENCE TABLE

 

TIA SECTION   INDENTURE SECTION
310(a)(1)(2)(5)   7.10
310(a)(3)(4)   Inapplicable
310(b)   7.8; 7.10
310(c)   Inapplicable
   
311(a)(b)   7.11
   
312(a)   2.6
312(b)(c)   10.3
   
313(a)(b)   7.6
313(c)   7.6; 10.2
313(d)   7.6
   
314(a)   4.2; 4.4; 10.2
314(b)   N/A
314(c)(1)(2)   10.4; 10.5
314(c)(3)   Inapplicable
314(d)   Inapplicable
314(e)   10.5
314(f)   Inapplicable
315(a)   7.1, 7.2
315(b)   7.5; 10.2
315(c)   7.1
315(d)   7.1; 7.2
315(e)   6.11
   
316(a)(last sentence)   2.10
316(a)(1)(A)   6.5
316(a)(1)(B)   6.4
316(a)(2)   8.2
316(b)   6.7
316(c)   8.4
   
317(a)(1)   6.8
317(a)(2)   6.9
317(b)   2.5; 7.12
   
318(a)   10.1
318(b)   Inapplicable
318(c)   Inapplicable

 

Note: This Cross-Reference Table shall not, for any purpose, be deemed to be a part of the Indenture.

 

iv
 

 

FORM OF INDENTURE

 

INDENTURE, dated as of                     ,         , by and between Akers Biosciences, Inc., a New Jersey corporation, as Issuer (the “Company”) and                                         , a                                         organized under the laws of                                         , as Trustee (the “Trustee”).

 

RECITALS OF THE COMPANY

 

The Company has duly authorized the execution and delivery of this Indenture to provide for the issuance from time to time of its secured or unsecured debentures, notes, bonds or other evidences of indebtedness to be issued in one or more series (the “Securities”), as herein provided, on such terms and up to such principal amount as may from time to time be authorized in or pursuant to one or more resolutions of the Board of Directors or by supplemental indenture.

 

All things necessary to make this Indenture a valid agreement of the Company in accordance with its terms have been done, and the execution and delivery thereof have been in all respects duly authorized by the parties hereto.

 

NOW, THEREFORE, THIS INDENTURE WITNESSETH:

 

For and in consideration of the premises and the purchase of the Securities by the Holders thereof, it is mutually agreed, for the equal and proportionate benefit of all Holders of the Securities of a Series thereof, as follows:

 

ARTICLE 1

 

DEFINITIONS AND INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE

 

1.1. DEFINITIONS.

 

“Affiliate” of any specified Person means any other Person which, directly or indirectly through one or more intermediaries, controls, or is controlled by or is under common control with, such specified Person. For the purposes of this definition, “control” (including, with correlative meanings, the terms “controlling,” “controlled by” and “under common control with”), as used with respect to any Person, means the possession, directly or indirectly, of the power to direct or cause the direction of the management or policies of such Person, whether through the ownership of voting securities, by agreement or otherwise.

 

1
 

 

“Agent” means any Registrar, Paying Agent, co-registrar or agent for service of notices and demands.

 

“Board of Directors” means the Board of Directors of the Company or any committee duly authorized to act therefor.

 

“Board Resolution” means a copy of a resolution certified pursuant to an Officers’ Certificate to have been duly adopted by the Board of Directors of the Company and to be in full force and effect on the date of such certification which has been delivered to the Trustee.

 

“Capital Stock” means, with respect to any Person, any and all shares or other equivalents (however designated) of capital stock, partnership interests or any other participation, right or other interest in the nature of an equity interest in such Person or any option, warrant or other security convertible into any of the foregoing.

 

“Company” means the party named as such in the first paragraph of this Indenture until a successor replaces such party pursuant to Article 5 of this Indenture, and thereafter means the successor and any other primary obligor on the Securities.

 

“Company Order” means a written order signed in the name of the Company by two Officers, one of whom must be its Chief Executive Officer or its Chief Financial Officer.

 

“Company Request” means any written request signed in the name of the Company by its Chief Executive Officer, its President, any Vice President, its Chief Financial Officer or its Treasurer and attested to by its Secretary or any Assistant Secretary.

 

“Corporate Trust Office” means the office of the Trustee at which at any particular time its corporate trust business shall be principally administered.

 

“Default” means any event that is, or that with the passing of time or giving of notice or both would be, an Event of Default.

 

“Depository” means, with respect to the Securities of any Series issuable or issued in whole or in part in the form of one or more Global Securities, the Person designated as Depository for such Series by the Company, which Depository shall be a clearing agency registered under the Exchange Act, until a successor Depository shall have become such pursuant to the applicable provisions of this Indenture, and thereafter “Depository” shall mean each Person who is then a Depository hereunder, and if at any time there is more than one such Person, such Persons.

 

“Dollars” means the currency of the United States of America.

 

“Euro” means the single currency of participating member states of the economic and monetary union as contemplated in the Treaty on European Union.

 

2
 

 

“Exchange Act” means the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.

 

“Foreign Currency” means any currency or currency unit issued by a government other than the government of the United States of America.

 

“Foreign Government Obligations” means, with respect to Securities that are denominated in a Foreign Currency, (i) direct obligations of the government that issued or caused to be issued such currency for the payment of which obligations its full faith and credit is pledged or (ii) obligations of a Person controlled or supervised by, or acting as an agency or instrumentality of, such government, the timely payment of which is unconditionally guaranteed as a full faith and credit obligation by such government, which, in either case under clauses (i) and (ii), are not callable or redeemable at the option of the issuer thereof.

 

“GAAP” means generally accepted accounting principles consistently applied as in effect in the United States of America from time to time.

 

“Global Security” or “Global Securities” means a Security or Securities, as the case may be, in the form established pursuant to Section 2.2, evidencing all or part of a Series of Securities issued to the Depository for such Series or its nominee, and registered in the name of such Depository or nominee, and bearing the legend set forth in Section 2.15(c) (or such other legend(s) as may be applied to such Securities in accordance with Section 2.2(24)).

 

“Holder” or “Securityholder” means the Person in whose name a Security is registered on the Registrar’s books.

 

“Indebtedness” means (without duplication), with respect to any Person, any indebtedness at any time outstanding, secured or unsecured, contingent or otherwise, which is for borrowed money (whether or not the recourse of the lender is to the whole of the assets of such Person or only to a portion thereof), or evidenced by bonds, notes, debentures or similar instruments, or representing the balance deferred and unpaid of the purchase price of any property (excluding any balances that constitute accounts payable or trade payables, and other accrued liabilities arising in the ordinary course of business), if and to the extent any of the foregoing indebtedness would appear as a liability upon a balance sheet of such Person prepared in accordance with GAAP.

 

“Indenture” means this Indenture as amended, restated or supplemented from time to time.

 

Interest Payment Date,” when used with respect to any Security, means the Stated Maturity of an installment of interest on such Security.

 

“Lien” means, with respect to any property or assets of any Person, any mortgage or deed of trust, pledge, hypothecation, assignment, deposit arrangement, security interest, lien, charge, easement, encumbrance, preference, priority or other security agreement or preferential arrangement of any kind or nature whatsoever on or with respect to such property or assets (including, without limitation, any capitalized lease obligation, conditional sales or other title retention agreement having substantially the same economic effect as any of the foregoing).

 

“Maturity,” when used with respect to any Security, means the date on which the principal of such Security, or an installment of principal, becomes due and payable as therein or herein provided, whether at the Stated Maturity or by declaration of acceleration, call for redemption, notice of option to elect payment or otherwise.

 

“Officer” means the Chief Executive Officer, the President, any Vice President, the Chief Financial Officer, the Treasurer or the Secretary of the Company, or any other officer designated by the Board of Directors, as the case may be.

 

3
 

 

“Officers’ Certificate” means, with respect to any Person, a certificate signed by the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer, President or any Senior or Executive Vice President and the Chief Financial Officer or any Treasurer of such Person, that shall comply with applicable provisions of this Indenture.

 

“Opinion of Counsel” means a written opinion from legal counsel, which counsel is reasonably acceptable to the Trustee. The counsel may be an employee of or counsel to the Company.

 

“Person” means any individual, corporation, limited liability company, partnership, joint venture, association, joint-stock company, trust, unincorporated organization or government (including any agency or political subdivision thereof).

 

“Redemption Date,” when used with respect to any Security to be redeemed, means the date fixed for such redemption pursuant to this Indenture.

 

“Responsible Officer,” when used with respect to the Trustee, means any officer within the corporate trust department or division of the Trustee (or any successor group of the Trustee) or any other officer of the Trustee customarily performing functions similar to those performed by any of the above designated officers, and also means, with respect to a particular corporate trust matter, any other officer to whom such matter is referred because of his knowledge of and familiarity with the particular subject.

 

“SEC” means the United States Securities and Exchange Commission as constituted from time to time, or any successor performing substantially the same functions.

 

“Securities” means the securities that are issued under this Indenture, as amended or supplemented from time to time pursuant to this Indenture.

 

“Securities Act” means the Securities Act of 1933, as amended.

 

“Series” or “Series of Securities” means each series of debentures, notes, bonds or other debt instruments of the Company created pursuant to Sections 2.1 and 2.2.

 

“Significant Subsidiary” means (i) any direct or indirect Subsidiary of the Company that would be a “significant subsidiary” as defined in Article 1, Rule 1-02 of Regulation S-X, promulgated pursuant to the Securities Act, as such regulation is in effect on the date hereof, or (ii) any group of direct or indirect Subsidiaries of the Company that, taken together as a group, would be a “significant subsidiary” as defined in Article 1, Rule 1-02 of Regulation S-X, promulgated pursuant to the Securities Act, as such regulation is in effect on the date hereof.

 

“Stated Maturity,” when used with respect to any Security or any installment of principal thereof or interest thereon, means the date specified in such Security as the fixed date on which the principal of such Security, or such installment of principal or interest, is due and payable, and when used with respect to any other Indebtedness, means the date specified in the instrument governing such Indebtedness as the fixed date on which the principal of such Indebtedness, or any installment of interest thereon, is due and payable.

 

“Subsidiary” of any specified Person means any corporation, limited liability company, partnership, joint venture, association or other business entity, whether now existing or hereafter organized or acquired, (i) in the case of a corporation, of which more than 50% of the total voting power of the Capital Stock entitled (without regard to the occurrence of any contingency) to vote in the election of directors thereof is held, directly or indirectly, by such Person or any of its Subsidiaries; or (ii) in the case of a partnership, joint venture, association or other business entity, with respect to which such Person or any of its Subsidiaries has the power to direct or cause the direction of the management and policies of such entity by contract or otherwise, or if in accordance with GAAP such entity is consolidated with such Person for financial statement purposes.

 

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“TIA” means the Trust Indenture Act of 1939 (15 U.S. Code Section 77aaa-77bbbb) as in effect on the date of this Indenture (except as provided in Section 8.3).

 

“Trustee” means the party named as such in this Indenture until a successor replaces it pursuant to this Indenture, and thereafter means the successor, and if at any time there is more than one such Person, “Trustee” as used with respect to the Securities of any Series shall mean the Trustee with respect to Securities of that Series.

 

“U.S. Government Obligations” means direct non-callable obligations of, or non-callable obligations guaranteed by, the United States of America for the payment of which obligation or guarantee the full faith and credit of the United States of America is pledged.

 

1.2. OTHER DEFINITIONS.

 

The definitions of the following terms may be found in the sections indicated as follows:

 

TERM   DEFINED IN SECTION
   
“Bankruptcy Law”   6.1
   
“Business Day”   10.7
   
“Covenant Defeasance”   9.3
   
“Custodian”   6.1
   
“Event of Default”   6.1
   
“Journal”   10.15
   
“Judgment Currency”   10.16
   
“Legal Defeasance”   9.2
   
“Legal Holiday”   10.7
   
“Market Exchange Rate”   10.15
   
“Paying Agent”   2.4
   
“Place of Payment”   10.7
   
“Registrar”   2.4
   
“Required Currency”   10.16
   
“Service Agent”   2.4

 

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1.3. INCORPORATION BY REFERENCE OF TRUST INDENTURE ACT.

 

Whenever this Indenture refers to a provision of the TIA, the portion of such provision required to be incorporated herein in order for this Indenture to be qualified under the TIA is incorporated by reference in and made a part of this Indenture. The following TIA terms used in this Indenture have the following meanings:

 

“Commission” means the SEC.

 

“indenture securities” means the Securities.

 

“indenture securityholder” means a Holder or Securityholder.

 

“indenture to be qualified” means this Indenture.

 

“indenture trustee” or “institutional trustee” means the Trustee.

 

“obligor on the indenture securities” means the Company.

 

All other terms used in this Indenture that are defined by the TIA, defined in the TIA by reference to another statute or defined by SEC rule have the meanings therein assigned to them.

 

1.4. RULES OF CONSTRUCTION.

 

Unless the context otherwise requires:

 

(1) a term has the meaning assigned to it herein, whether defined expressly or by reference;

 

(2) an accounting term not otherwise defined has the meaning assigned to it in accordance with GAAP;

 

(3) “or” is not exclusive;

 

(4) words in the singular include the plural, and in the plural include the singular;

 

(5) words used herein implying any gender shall apply to each gender; and

 

(6) the words “herein”, “hereof” and “hereunder” and other words of similar import refer to this Indenture as a whole and not to any particular Article, Section or other subdivision.

 

ARTICLE 2

 

THE SECURITIES

 

2.1. ISSUABLE IN SERIES.

 

The aggregate principal amount of Securities that may be authenticated and delivered under this Indenture is $[                    ]. The Securities may be issued in one or more Series. All Securities of a Series shall be identical except as may be set forth in a Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture or an Officers’ Certificate detailing the adoption of the terms thereof pursuant to the authority granted under a Board Resolution. In the case of Securities of a Series to be issued from time to time, the Board Resolution, Officers’ Certificate or supplemental indenture may provide for the method by which specified terms (such as interest rate, Stated Maturity, record date or date from which interest shall accrue) are to be determined. Securities may differ between Series in respect of any matters, PROVIDED, that all Series of Securities shall be equally and ratably entitled to the benefits of the Indenture.

 

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2.2. ESTABLISHMENT OF TERMS OF SERIES OF SECURITIES.

 

At or prior to the issuance of any Securities within a Series, the following shall be established (as to the Series generally, in the case of Subsection 2.2(1) and either as to such Securities within the Series or as to the Series generally in the case of Subsections 2.2(2) through 2.2(24)) by a Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture or an Officers’ Certificate, in each case, pursuant to authority granted under a Board Resolution:

 

(1) the title of the Series (which shall distinguish the Securities of that particular Series from the Securities of any other Series);

 

(2) any limit upon the aggregate principal amount of the Securities of the Series which may be authenticated and delivered under this Indenture (except for Securities authenticated and delivered upon registration of transfer of, or in exchange for, or in lieu of, other Securities of the Series pursuant to Section 2.7, 2.8, 2.11, 3.6 or 8.5);

 

(3) the price or prices (expressed as a percentage of the principal amount thereof) at which the Securities of the Series will be issued;

 

(4) the date or dates on which the principal of the Securities of the Series is payable;

 

(5) the rate or rates (which may be fixed or variable) per annum or, if applicable, the method used to determine such rate or rates (including, but not limited to, any commodity, commodity index, stock exchange index or financial index) at which the Securities of the Series shall bear interest, if any, the date or dates from which such interest, if any, shall accrue, the date or dates on which such interest, if any, shall commence and be payable and any regular record date for the interest payable on any Interest Payment Date;

 

(6) the place or places where the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities of the Series shall be payable, or the method of such payment, if by wire transfer, mail or other means;

 

(7) if applicable, the period or periods within which, the price or prices at which and the terms and conditions upon which the Securities of the Series may be redeemed, in whole or in part, at the option of the Company;

 

(8) the obligation, if any, of the Company to redeem or purchase the Securities of the Series pursuant to any sinking fund or analogous provisions or at the option of a Holder thereof, and the period or periods within which, the price or prices at which and the terms and conditions upon which Securities of the Series shall be redeemed or purchased, in whole or in part, pursuant to such obligation;

 

(9) the dates, if any, on which and the price or prices at which the Securities of the Series will be repurchased by the Company at the option of the Holders thereof, and other detailed terms and provisions of such repurchase obligations;

 

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(10) if other than denominations of $[          ] and any integral multiple thereof, the denominations in which the Securities of the Series shall be issuable;

 

(11) the forms of the Securities of the Series in bearer (if to be issued outside of the United States of America) or fully registered form (and, if in fully registered form, whether the Securities will be issuable as Global Securities);

 

(12) if other than the principal amount thereof, the portion of the principal amount of the Securities of the Series that shall be payable upon declaration of acceleration of the Maturity thereof pursuant to Section 6.2;

 

(13) the currency of denomination of the Securities of the Series, which may be Dollars or any Foreign Currency, including, but not limited to, the Euro, and, if such currency of denomination is a composite currency other than the Euro, the agency or organization, if any, responsible for overseeing such composite currency;

 

(14) the designation of the currency, currencies or currency units in which payment of the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities of the Series will be made;

 

(15) if payments of principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, the Securities of the Series are to be made in one or more currencies or currency units other than that or those in which such Securities are denominated, the manner in which the exchange rate with respect to such payments will be determined;

 

(16) the manner in which the amounts of payment of principal of, or interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities of the Series will be determined, if such amounts may be determined by reference to an index based on a currency or currencies or by reference to a commodity, commodity index, stock exchange index or financial index;

 

(17) the provisions, if any, relating to any collateral provided for the Securities of the Series;

 

(18) any addition to or change in the covenants set forth in Articles 4 or 5 that applies to Securities of the Series;

 

(19) any addition to or change in the Events of Default which applies to any Securities of the Series, and any change in the right of the Trustee or the requisite Holders of such Securities to declare the principal amount thereof due and payable pursuant to Section 6.2;

 

(20) the terms and conditions, if any, for conversion of the Securities into or exchange of the Securities for shares of common stock or preferred stock of the Company that apply to Securities of the Series;

 

(21) any depositories, interest rate calculation agents, exchange rate calculation agents or other agents with respect to Securities of such Series if other than those appointed herein;

 

(22) the terms and conditions, if any, upon which the Securities shall be subordinated in right of payment to other Indebtedness of the Company;

 

(23) if applicable, that the Securities of the Series, in whole or any specified part, shall be defeasible pursuant to Article 9; and

 

(24) any other terms of the Securities of the Series (which terms shall not be inconsistent with the provisions of this Indenture, except as permitted by Section 8.1, but which may modify or delete any provision of this Indenture insofar as it applies to such Series).

 

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All Securities of any one Series need not be issued at the same time, and may be issued from time to time, consistent with the terms of this Indenture, if so provided by or pursuant to the Board Resolution, supplemental indenture or Officers’ Certificate referred to above, however, the authorized principal amount of any Series may not be increased to provide for issuances of additional Securities of such Series, unless otherwise provided in such Board Resolution, supplemental indenture or Officers’ Certificate.

 

2.3. EXECUTION AND AUTHENTICATION.

 

The Securities shall be executed on behalf of the Company by two Officers of the Company or an Officer and an Assistant Secretary of the Company. Each such signature may be either manual or facsimile. The Company’s seal may be impressed, affixed, imprinted or reproduced on the Securities and may be in facsimile form.

 

If an Officer whose signature is on a Security no longer holds that office at the time the Security is authenticated, the Security shall nevertheless be valid.

 

A Security shall not be valid until authenticated by the manual signature of the Trustee or an authenticating agent. The signature shall be conclusive evidence that the Security has been authenticated under this Indenture. The Trustee shall at any time, and from time to time, authenticate Securities for original issue in the principal amount provided in the Board Resolution, supplemental indenture hereto or Officers’ Certificate, upon receipt by the Trustee of a Company Order. Such Company Order may authorize authentication and delivery pursuant to oral or electronic instructions from the Company or its duly authorized agent or agents, which oral instructions shall be promptly confirmed in writing. Each Security shall be dated the date of its authentication.

 

The aggregate principal amount of Securities of any Series outstanding at any time may not exceed any limit upon the maximum principal amount for such Series set forth in the Board Resolution, supplemental indenture hereto or Officers’ Certificate delivered pursuant to Section 2.2, except as provided in Section 2.8.

 

Prior to the issuance of Securities of any Series, the Trustee shall have received and (subject to Section 7.1) shall be fully protected in relying on: (a) the Board Resolution, supplemental indenture hereto or Officers’ Certificate establishing the form of the Securities of that Series or of Securities within that Series and the terms of the Securities of that Series or of Securities within that Series, (b) an Officers’ Certificate complying with Section 10.4, and (c) an Opinion of Counsel complying with Section 10.4.

 

The Trustee shall have the right to decline to authenticate and deliver any Securities of any Series: (a) if the Trustee, being advised in writing by outside counsel, determines that such action may not lawfully be taken; or (b) if the Trustee in good faith by its board of directors or trustees, executive committee or a trust committee of directors and/or vice-presidents shall reasonably determine that such action would expose the Trustee to personal liability, or cause it to have a conflict of interest with respect to Holders of any then outstanding Series of Securities.

 

The Trustee may appoint an authenticating agent acceptable to the Company to authenticate Securities. An authenticating agent may authenticate Securities whenever the Trustee may do so. Any appointment shall be evidenced by an instrument signed by an authorized officer of the Trustee, a copy of which shall be furnished to the Company. Each reference in this Indenture to authentication by the Trustee includes authentication by such agent. An authenticating agent has the same rights as an Agent to deal with the Company or an Affiliate of the Company.

 

2.4. REGISTRAR AND PAYING AGENT.

 

The Company shall maintain in each Place of Payment for any Series of Securities (i) an office or agency where such Securities may be presented for registration of transfer or for exchange (“Registrar”), (ii) an office or agency where such Securities may be presented for payment (“Paying Agent”), and PROVIDED, that at the option of the Company payment of interest may be made by check mailed to the address of the Person entitled thereto as such address shall appear in the register for the Securities maintained by the Registrar), and (iii) an office or agency where notices and demands to or upon the Company in respect of the Securities and this Indenture may be served (“Service Agent”). The Registrar shall keep a register of the Securities and of their transfer and exchange. The Company may have one or more co-registrars and one or more additional paying agents. The Company shall give prompt written notice to the Trustee of the location, and any change in the location, of such office or agency. If at any time the Company shall fail to maintain any such required office, or to furnish the Trustee with the address thereof, such presentations, surrenders, notices and demands may be made or served at the address of the Trustee as set forth in Section 10.2. If the Company acts as Paying Agent, it shall segregate the money held by it for the payment of principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities and hold it as a separate trust fund. The Company may change any Paying Agent, Registrar, co-registrar or any other Agent without notice to any Securityholder.

 

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The Company may also from time to time designate one or more other offices or agencies where the Securities may be presented or surrendered for any or all such purposes, and may from time to time rescind such designations; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that no such designation or rescission shall in any manner relieve the Company of its obligation to maintain an office or agency in each Place of Payment for Securities of any Series for such purposes. The Company hereby initially designates the Corporate Trust Office of the Trustee as such office of the Company. The Company shall give prompt written notice to the Trustee of such designation or rescission, and of any change in the location of any such other office or agency.

 

The Company shall enter into an appropriate agency agreement with any Registrar or Paying Agent not a party to this Indenture. The agreement shall implement the provisions of this Indenture that relate to such Agent. The Company shall notify the Trustee of the name and address of any such Agent. If the Company fails to maintain a Registrar or Paying Agent, or agent for service of notices and demands, or fails to give the foregoing notice, the Trustee shall act as such. The Company hereby appoints the Trustee as the initial Registrar, Paying Agent and Service Agent for each Series unless another Registrar, Paying Agent or Service Agent, as the case may be, is appointed prior to the time Securities of that Series are first issued.                        .

 

2.5. PAYING AGENT TO HOLD ASSETS IN TRUST.

 

The Trustee as Paying Agent shall, and the Company shall require each Paying Agent other than the Trustee to agree in writing that each Paying Agent shall, hold in trust for the benefit of the Holders of any Series of Securities or the Trustee all assets held by the Paying Agent for the payment of principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, such Series of Securities (whether such assets have been distributed to it by the Company or any other obligor on such Series of Securities), and the Company and the Paying Agent shall notify the Trustee in writing of any Default by the Company (or any other obligor on such Series of Securities) in making any such payment. The Company at any time may require a Paying Agent to distribute all assets held by it to the Trustee and account for any assets disbursed, and the Trustee may, at any time during the continuance of any payment default with respect to any Series of Securities, upon written request to a Paying Agent, require such Paying Agent to distribute all assets held by it to the Trustee and to account for any assets distributed. Upon distribution to the Trustee of all assets that shall have been delivered by the Company to the Paying Agent, the Paying Agent shall have no further liability for such assets.

 

2.6. SECURITYHOLDER LISTS.

 

The Trustee shall preserve in as current a form as is reasonably practicable the most recent list available to it of the names and addresses of Securityholders of each Series of Securities. If the Trustee is not the Registrar, the Company shall furnish to the Trustee as of each regular record date for the payment of interest on the Securities of a Series and before each related Interest Payment Date, and at such other times as the Trustee may request in writing, a list in such form and as of such date as the Trustee may reasonably require of the names and addresses of Securityholders of each Series of Securities.

 

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2.7. TRANSFER AND EXCHANGE.

 

When Securities of a Series are presented to the Registrar with a request to register the transfer thereof, the Registrar shall register the transfer as requested if the requirements of applicable law are met, and when such Securities of a Series are presented to the Registrar with a request to exchange them for an equal principal amount of other authorized denominations of Securities of the same Series, the Registrar shall make the exchange as requested. To permit transfers and exchanges, upon surrender of any Security for registration of transfer at the office or agency maintained pursuant to Section 2.4, the Company shall execute and the Trustee shall authenticate Securities at the Registrar’s request.

 

If Securities are issued as Global Securities, the provisions of Section 2.15 shall apply.

 

All Securities issued upon any registration of transfer or exchange of Securities shall be the valid obligations of the Company, evidencing the same debt, and entitled to the same benefits under this Indenture, as the Securities surrendered upon such registration of transfer or exchange.

 

Every Security presented or surrendered for registration of transfer or for exchange shall (if so required by the Company or the Registrar or a co-registrar) be duly endorsed, or be accompanied by a written instrument of transfer in form satisfactory to the Company and the Registrar or a co-registrar, duly executed by the Holder thereof or his attorney duly authorized in writing.

 

Any exchange or transfer shall be without charge, except that the Company may require payment by the Holder of a sum sufficient to cover any tax or other governmental charge that may be imposed in relation to a transfer or exchange, but this provision shall not apply to any exchange pursuant to Section 2.11, 3.6 or 8.5. The Trustee shall not be required to register transfers of Securities of any Series, or to exchange Securities of any Series, for a period of [  ] days before the record date for selection for redemption of such Securities. The Trustee shall not be required to exchange or register transfers of Securities of any Series called or being called for redemption in whole or in part, except the unredeemed portion of such Security being redeemed in part.

 

2.8. REPLACEMENT SECURITIES.

 

If a mutilated Security is surrendered to the Trustee, or if the Holder of a Security presents evidence to the satisfaction of the Company and the Trustee that the Security has been lost, destroyed or wrongfully taken, the Company shall issue and the Trustee shall authenticate a replacement Security of the same Series and of like tenor and principal amount and bearing a number not contemporaneously outstanding. An indemnity bond may be required by the Company or the Trustee that is sufficient in the reasonable judgment of the Company or the Trustee, as the case may be, to protect the Company, the Trustee or any Agent from any loss which any of them may suffer if a Security is replaced. The Company may charge such Holder for the Company’s out-of-pocket expenses in replacing a Security, including the fees and expenses of the Trustee. Every replacement Security shall constitute an original additional obligation of the Company, whether or not the destroyed, lost or stolen Security shall be at any time enforceable by anyone, and shall be entitled to all the benefits of this Indenture equally and proportionately with any and all other Securities of that Series duly issued hereunder.

 

2.9. OUTSTANDING SECURITIES.

 

Securities outstanding at any time are all Securities authenticated by the Trustee, except for those canceled by it, those delivered to it for cancellation and those described in this Section 2.9 as not outstanding.

 

If a Security is replaced pursuant to Section 2.8 (other than a mutilated Security surrendered for replacement), it ceases to be outstanding until the Company and the Trustee receive proof satisfactory to each of them that the replaced Security is held by a bona fide purchaser. A mutilated Security ceases to be outstanding upon surrender of such Security and replacement thereof pursuant to Section 2.8.

 

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If a Paying Agent holds on a Redemption Date or the Stated Maturity money sufficient to pay the principal of, premium, if any, and accrued interest on, Securities payable on that date, and is not prohibited from paying such money to the Holders thereof pursuant to the terms of this Indenture (PROVIDED, that if such Securities are to be redeemed, notice of such redemption has been duly given pursuant to this Indenture or provision therefor satisfactory to the Trustee has been made), then on and after that date such Securities cease to be outstanding and interest on them ceases to accrue.

 

A Security does not cease to be outstanding solely because the Company or an Affiliate holds the Security.

 

2.10. WHEN TREASURY SECURITIES DISREGARDED; DETERMINATION OF HOLDERS’ ACTION.

 

In determining whether the Holders of the required aggregate principal amount of the Securities of any Series have concurred in any direction, waiver or consent, the Securities of any Series owned by the Company or any other obligor on such Securities, or by any Affiliate of any of them, shall be disregarded, except that for the purposes of determining whether the Trustee shall be protected in relying on any such direction, waiver or consent, only Securities of such Series which the Trustee actually knows are so owned shall be so disregarded. Securities of such Series so owned which have been pledged in good faith shall not be disregarded if the pledgee establishes to the satisfaction of the Trustee the pledgee’s right so to act with respect to the Securities of such Series and that the pledgee is not the Company or any other obligor on the Securities of such Series, or an Affiliate of any of them.

 

2.11. TEMPORARY SECURITIES.

 

Until definitive Securities are ready for delivery, the Company may prepare and execute, and the Trustee shall authenticate, temporary Securities. Temporary Securities shall be substantially in the form, and shall carry all rights, of definitive Securities, but may have variations that the Company considers appropriate for temporary Securities. Without unreasonable delay, the Company shall prepare and execute, and the Trustee shall authenticate, definitive Securities in exchange for temporary Securities without charge to the Holder.

 

2.12. CANCELLATION.

 

All Securities surrendered for payment, redemption or registration of transfer or exchange, or for credit against any sinking fund payment, shall, if surrendered to any Person other than the Trustee, be delivered to the Trustee for cancellation. The Company may at any time deliver to the Trustee for cancellation any Securities previously authenticated and delivered hereunder which the Company may have acquired in any manner whatsoever, and may deliver to the Trustee (or to any other Person for delivery to the Trustee) for cancellation any Securities previously authenticated hereunder which the Company has not issued and sold. The Registrar and the Paying Agent shall forward to the Trustee any Securities surrendered to them for transfer, exchange or payment. The Trustee or, at the direction of the Trustee, the Registrar or the Paying Agent, and no one else, shall cancel, and at the written request of the Company shall dispose of, all Securities surrendered for transfer, exchange, payment or cancellation. If the Company shall acquire any of the Securities, such acquisition shall not operate as a redemption or satisfaction of the Indebtedness represented by such Securities unless and until the same are surrendered to the Trustee for cancellation pursuant to this Section 2.12. No Securities shall be authenticated in lieu of or in exchange for any Securities cancelled as provided in this Section 2.12, except as expressly permitted by this Indenture.

 

2.13. PAYMENT OF INTEREST; DEFAULTED INTEREST; COMPUTATION OF INTEREST.

 

Except as otherwise provided as contemplated by Section 2.2 with respect to any Series of Securities, interest on any Security which is payable, and is punctually paid or duly provided for, on any Interest Payment Date shall be paid to the Person in whose name that Security is registered at the close of business on the regular record date for such interest, as provided in the Board Resolution, supplemental indenture hereto or Officers’ Certificate establishing the terms of such Series.

 

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If the Company defaults in a payment of interest on the Securities, it shall pay the defaulted amounts, plus any interest payable on defaulted amounts pursuant to Section 4.1, to the Persons who are Securityholders on a subsequent special record date, which date shall be the [  ] day next preceding the date fixed by the Company for the payment of defaulted interest, or the next succeeding Business Day if such date is not a Business Day. At least [  ] days before the special record date, the Company shall mail or cause to be mailed to each Securityholder, with a copy to the Trustee, a notice that states the special record date, the payment date and the amount of defaulted interest, and interest payable on such defaulted interest, if any, to be paid.

 

Except as otherwise specified as contemplated by Section 2.2 for Securities of any Series, interest on the Securities of each Series shall be computed on the basis of a 360-day year of twelve 30-day months.

 

2.14. CUSIP NUMBER.

 

The Company in issuing the Securities may use one or more “CUSIP” numbers, and, if the Company does so, the Trustee shall use the CUSIP number(s) in notices of redemption or exchange as a convenience to Holders, PROVIDED, that any such notice may state that no representation is made as to the correctness or accuracy of the CUSIP number(s) printed in the notice or on the Securities, and that reliance may be placed only on the other identification numbers printed on the Securities, and that any such redemption or exchange shall not be affected by any defect in or omission of any such numbers.

 

2.15. PROVISIONS FOR GLOBAL SECURITIES.

 

(a) A Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture hereto or an Officers’ Certificate shall establish whether the Securities of a Series shall be issued in whole or in part in the form of one or more Global Securities, and the Depository for such Global Securities or Securities.

 

(b) Notwithstanding any provisions to the contrary contained in Section 2.7 and in addition thereto, if, and only if the Depository (i) at any time is unwilling or unable to continue as Depository for such Global Security or ceases to be a clearing agency registered under the Exchange Act and (ii) a successor Depository is not appointed by the Company within [  ] days after the date the Company is so informed in writing or becomes aware of the same, the Company promptly will execute and deliver to the Trustee definitive Securities, and the Trustee, upon receipt of a Company Request for the authentication and delivery of such definitive Securities (which the Company will promptly execute and deliver to the Trustee) and an Officers’ Certificate to the effect that such Global Security shall be so exchangeable, will authenticate and deliver definitive Securities, without charge, registered in such names and in such authorized denominations as the Depository shall direct in writing (pursuant to instructions from its direct and indirect participants or otherwise) in an aggregate principal amount equal to the principal amount of the Global Security with like tenor and terms. Upon the exchange of a Global Security for definitive Securities, such Global Security shall be canceled by the Trustee. Unless and until it is exchanged in whole or in part for definitive Securities, as provided in this Section 2.15(b), a Global Security may not be transferred except as a whole by the Depository with respect to such Global Security to a nominee of such Depository, by a nominee of such Depository to such Depository or another nominee of such Depository or by the Depository or any such nominee to a successor Depository or a nominee of such a successor Depository.

 

(c) Any Global Security issued hereunder shall bear a legend in substantially the following form:

 

“This Security is a Global Security within the meaning of the Indenture hereinafter referred to, and is registered in the name of the Depository or a nominee of the Depository. This Security is exchangeable for Securities registered in the name of a Person other than the Depository or its nominee only in the limited circumstances described in the Indenture, and may not be transferred except as a whole by the Depository to a nominee of the Depository, by a nominee of the Depository to the Depository or another nominee of the Depository or by the Depository or any such nominee to a successor Depository or a nominee of such a successor Depository.”

 

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(d) The Depository, as a Holder, may appoint agents and otherwise authorize participants to give or take any request, demand, authorization, direction, notice, consent, waiver or other action which a Holder is entitled to give or take under the Indenture.

 

(e) Notwithstanding the other provisions of this Indenture, unless otherwise specified as contemplated by Section 2.2, payment of the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, any Global Security shall be made to the Depository or its nominee in its capacity as the Holder thereof.

 

(f) Except as provided in Section 2.15(e) above, the Company, the Trustee and any Agent shall treat a Person as the Holder of such principal amount of outstanding Securities of any Series represented by a Global Security as shall be specified in a written statement of the Depository (which may be in the form of a participants’ list for such Series) with respect to such Global Security, for purposes of obtaining any consents, declarations, waivers or directions required to be given by the Holders pursuant to this Indenture, PROVIDED, that until the Trustee is so provided with a written statement, it may treat the Depository or any other Person in whose name a Global Security is registered as the owner of such Global Security for the purpose of receiving payment of the principal of, and any premium and (subject to Section 2.13) any interest on, such Global Security and for all other purposes whatsoever, and none of the Company, the Trustee or any agent of the Company or the Trustee shall be affected by notice to the contrary.

 

2.16. PERSONS DEEMED OWNERS.

 

Prior to due presentment of a Security for registration of transfer, the Company, the Trustee, the Registrar and any agent of the Company, the Registrar or the Trustee may treat the Person in whose name such Security is registered as the owner of such Security for the purpose of receiving payment of the principal of, and any premium and (subject to Section 2.13) any interest on, such Security and for all other purposes whatsoever, and none of the Company, the Trustee, the Registrar or any agent of the Company, the Trustee or the Registrar shall be affected by notice to the contrary.

 

ARTICLE 3

 

REDEMPTION

 

3.1. NOTICES TO TRUSTEE.

 

The Company may, with respect to any Series of Securities, reserve the right to redeem and pay the Series of Securities, or may covenant to redeem and pay the Series of Securities or any part thereof, prior to the Stated Maturity thereof at such time and on such terms as provided for in such Securities or the related Board Resolution, supplemental indenture or Officers’ Certificate. If a Series of Securities is redeemable and the Company elects to redeem all or part of such Series of Securities, it shall notify the Trustee of the Redemption Date and the principal amount of Securities to be redeemed at least 45 days (unless a shorter notice shall be satisfactory to the Trustee) before the Redemption Date. Any such notice may be canceled at any time prior to notice of such redemption being mailed to any Holder, and shall thereby be void and of no effect.

 

3.2. SELECTION BY TRUSTEE OF SECURITIES TO BE REDEEMED.

 

Unless otherwise indicated for a particular Series of Securities by a Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture or an Officers’ Certificate, if fewer than all of the Securities of a Series are to be redeemed, the Trustee shall select the Securities of a Series to be redeemed pro rata, by lot or by any other method that the Trustee considers fair and appropriate (unless the Company specifically directs the Trustee otherwise) and, if such Securities are listed on any securities exchange, by a method that complies with the requirements of such exchange.

 

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The Trustee shall make the selection from Securities of a Series outstanding and not previously called for redemption, and shall promptly notify the Company in writing of the Securities selected for redemption and, in the case of any Security selected for partial redemption, the principal amount thereof to be redeemed at least [  ] but not more than [  ] days before the Redemption Date. Securities of a Series in denominations of $[    ] may be redeemed only in whole. The Trustee may select for redemption portions of the principal of Securities of a Series that have denominations larger than $[   ]. Securities of a Series and portions of them it selects shall be in amounts of $[   ] or, with respect to Securities of any Series issuable in other denominations pursuant to Section 2.2(10), the minimum principal denomination for each Series and integral multiples thereof. Provisions of this Indenture that apply to Securities called for redemption also apply to portions of Securities called for redemption.

 

3.3. NOTICE OF REDEMPTION.

 

Unless otherwise indicated for a particular Series by Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture hereto or an Officers’ Certificate, at least [  ] days, and no more than [  ] days, before a Redemption Date, the Company shall mail, or cause to be mailed, a notice of redemption by first-class mail to each Holder of Securities to be redeemed at his or her last address as the same appears on the registry books maintained by the Registrar. The notice shall identify the Securities to be redeemed and shall state:

 

(1) the Redemption Date;

 

(2) the redemption price, and that such redemption price shall become due and payable on the Redemption Date;

 

(3) if any Security of a Series is being redeemed in part, the portion of the principal amount of such Security of a Series to be redeemed and that, after the Redemption Date and upon surrender of such Security of a Series, a new Security or Securities in principal amount equal to the unredeemed portion will be issued;

 

(4) the name and address of the Paying Agent;

 

(5) that Securities of a Series called for redemption must be surrendered to the Paying Agent to collect the redemption price, and the place or places where each such Security is to be surrendered for such payment;

 

(6) that, unless the Company defaults in making the redemption payment, interest on the Securities of a Series called for redemption ceases to accrue on the Redemption Date, and the only remaining right of the Holders of such Securities is to receive payment of the redemption price upon surrender to the Paying Agent of the Securities redeemed;

 

(7) if fewer than all of the Securities of a Series are to be redeemed, the identification of the particular Securities of a Series (or portion thereof) to be redeemed, as well as the aggregate principal amount of Securities of a Series to be redeemed and the aggregate principal amount of Securities of a Series to be outstanding after such partial redemption.

 

(8) the CUSIP number, if any, printed on the Securities being redeemed; and

 

(9) that no representation is made as to the correctness or accuracy of the CUSIP number, if any, listed in such notice or printed on the Securities.

 

At the Company’s request, the Trustee shall give the notice of redemption in the Company’s name and at the Company’s sole expense.

 

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3.4. EFFECT OF NOTICE OF REDEMPTION.

 

Once the notice of redemption described in Section 3.3 is mailed, Securities of a Series called for redemption become due and payable on the Redemption Date and at the redemption price, plus interest, if any, accrued to the Redemption Date. Upon surrender to the Trustee or Paying Agent, such Securities of a Series shall be paid at the redemption price, plus accrued interest, if any, to the Redemption Date; PROVIDED, that if the Redemption Date is after a regular interest payment record date and on or prior to the next Interest Payment Date, the accrued interest shall be payable to the Holder of the redeemed Securities registered on the relevant record date, as specified by the Company in the notice to the Trustee pursuant to Section 3.1.

 

3.5. DEPOSIT OF REDEMPTION PRICE.

 

On or prior to the Redemption Date (but no later than 11:00 A.M. Eastern Time on such date), the Company shall deposit with the Paying Agent money sufficient to pay the redemption price of and accrued interest, if any, on all Securities to be redeemed on that date other than Securities or portions thereof called for redemption on that date which have been delivered by the Company to the Trustee for cancellation.

 

On and after any Redemption Date, if money sufficient to pay the redemption price of, and accrued interest on, Securities called for redemption shall have been made available in accordance with the preceding paragraph and the Company and the Paying Agent are not prohibited from paying such moneys to Holders, the Securities called for redemption will cease to accrue interest and the only right of the Holders of such Securities will be to receive payment of the redemption price of and, subject to the proviso in Section 3.4, accrued and unpaid interest on such Securities to the Redemption Date. If any Security called for redemption shall not be so paid, interest will be paid, from the Redemption Date until such redemption payment is made, on the unpaid principal of the Security and any interest or premium, if any, not paid on such unpaid principal, in each case, at the rate and in the manner provided in the Securities.

 

3.6. SECURITIES REDEEMED IN PART.

 

Upon surrender of a Security of a Series that is redeemed in part, the Company shall execute, and the Trustee shall authenticate, for a Holder a new Security of the same Series equal in principal amount to the unredeemed portion of the Security surrendered.

 

ARTICLE 4

 

COVENANTS

 

4.1. PAYMENT OF SECURITIES.

 

The Company shall pay the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, each Series of Securities on the dates and in the manner provided in such Securities and this Indenture.

 

An installment of principal or interest shall be considered paid on the date it is due if the Trustee or Paying Agent holds on that date money designated for and sufficient to pay such installment and is not prohibited from paying such money to the Holders pursuant to the terms of this Indenture or otherwise.

 

The Company shall pay interest on overdue principal, and overdue interest, to the extent lawful, at the rate specified in the Series of Securities.

 

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4.2. SEC REPORTS.

 

The Company will deliver to the Trustee within [  ] days after the filing of the same with the SEC, copies of the quarterly and annual reports and of the information, documents and other reports, if any, which the Company is required to file with the SEC pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that each such report or document will be deemed to be so delivered to the Trustee if the Company files such report or document with the SEC through the SEC’s EDGAR database no later than the time such report or document is required to be filed with the SEC pursuant to the Exchange Act. Notwithstanding that the Company may not be subject to the reporting requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Exchange Act, the Company will file with the SEC, to the extent permitted, and provide the Trustee with, such quarterly and annual reports and such information, documents and other reports specified in Sections 13 and 15(d) of the Exchange Act. The Company will also comply with the other provisions of TIA Section 314(a).

   

4.3. COMPLIANCE CERTIFICATE.

 

(a) The Company shall deliver to the Trustee, within [   ] days after the end of each fiscal year of the Company, an Officers’ Certificate which complies with TIA Section 314(a)(4) stating that a review of the activities of the Company and its Subsidiaries during such fiscal year has been made under the supervision of the signing Officers with a view to determining whether the Company has kept, observed, performed and fulfilled its obligations under this Indenture, and further stating, as to each such Officer signing such certificate, that to the best of his or her knowledge the Company has kept, observed, performed and fulfilled each and every covenant contained in this Indenture and that there is no default in the performance or observance of any of the terms, provisions and conditions hereof (or, if a Default or Event of Default shall have occurred, describing all such Defaults or Events of Default of which he or she may have knowledge and what action the Company is taking or proposes to take with respect thereto) and that to the best of his or her knowledge no event has occurred and remains in existence by reason of which payments on account of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, the Securities is prohibited, or if such event has occurred, a description of the event and what action the Company is taking or proposes to take with respect thereto.

 

(b) (i) If any Default or Event of Default has occurred and is continuing or (ii) if any Holder seeks to exercise any remedy hereunder with respect to a claimed Default under this Indenture or the Securities, within five Business Days after the Company becoming aware of such occurrence the Company shall deliver to the Trustee an Officers’ Certificate specifying such event, notice or other action and what action the Company is taking or proposes to take with respect thereto.

 

4.4. CORPORATE EXISTENCE.

 

Subject to Article 5, the Company shall do or cause to be done all things necessary to preserve and keep in full force and effect its corporate existence, in accordance with the organizational documents (as the same may be amended from time to time) of the Company and the rights (charter and statutory), licenses and franchises of the Company; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that the Company shall not be required to preserve any such right, license or franchise, or its corporate existence, if the Board of Directors shall determine that the preservation thereof is no longer desirable in the conduct of the business of the Company and that the loss thereof is not adverse in any material respect to the Holders.

 

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ARTICLE 5

 

SUCCESSOR CORPORATION

 

5.1. LIMITATION ON CONSOLIDATION, MERGER AND SALE OF ASSETS.

 

(a) The Company will not, in any transaction or series of transactions, merge or consolidate with or into, or sell, assign, convey, transfer, lease or otherwise dispose of all or substantially all of its properties and assets (as an entirety or substantially as an entirety in one transaction or a series of related transactions), to any Person or Persons, unless at the time of and after giving effect thereto (i) either (A) if the transaction or series of transactions is a merger or consolidation, the Company shall be the surviving Person of such merger or consolidation, or (B) the Person formed by such consolidation or into which the Company is merged or to which the properties and assets of the Company are transferred (any such surviving Person or transferee Person being the “Surviving Entity”) shall be a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the United States of America, any state thereof or the District of Columbia, or a corporation or comparable legal entity organized under the laws of a foreign jurisdiction and shall expressly assume by a supplemental indenture executed and delivered to the Trustee, in form reasonably satisfactory to the Trustee, all of the obligations of the Company (including, without limitation, the obligation to pay the principal of, and premium and interest, if any, on, the Securities and the performance of the other covenants) under the Securities of each Series and this Indenture, and in each case, this Indenture shall remain in full force and effect; and (ii) immediately before and immediately after giving effect to such transaction or series of transactions on a pro forma basis (including, without limitation, any Indebtedness incurred or anticipated to be incurred in connection with or in respect of such transaction or series of transactions), no Default or Event of Default shall have occurred and be continuing.

 

(b) In connection with any consolidation, merger or transfer of assets contemplated by this Section 5.1, the Company shall deliver, or cause to be delivered, to the Trustee, in form and substance reasonably satisfactory to the Trustee, an Officers’ Certificate and an Opinion of Counsel, each stating that such consolidation, merger or transfer, and the supplemental indenture in respect thereto, comply with this Section 5.1, and that all conditions precedent herein provided for relating to such transaction or transactions have been complied with.

 

5.2. SUCCESSOR PERSON SUBSTITUTED.

 

Upon any consolidation, merger or transfer of all or substantially all of the assets of the Company in accordance with Section 5.1 above, the successor corporation formed by such consolidation, or into which the Company is merged or to which such transfer is made, shall succeed to, and be substituted for, and may exercise every right and power of, the Company under this Indenture with the same effect as if such successor corporation had been named as the Company herein, and thereafter (except with respect to any such transfer which is a lease) the predecessor corporation shall be relieved of all obligations and covenants under this Indenture and the Securities.

 

ARTICLE 6

 

DEFAULTS AND REMEDIES

 

6.1. EVENTS OF DEFAULT.

 

“Events of Default,” wherever used herein with respect to Securities of any Series, means any one of the following events, unless in the establishing Board Resolution, supplemental indenture or Officers’ Certificate, it is provided that such Series shall not have the benefit of said Event of Default:

 

(1) there is a default in the payment of any principal of, or premium, if any, on, the Securities when the same becomes due and payable at Maturity, upon acceleration, redemption or otherwise;

 

(2) there is a default in the payment of any interest on any Security of a Series when the same becomes due and payable, and the Default continues for a period of [  ] days;

 

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(3) the Company defaults in the observance or performance of any other covenant in the Securities of a Series or in this Indenture for [  ] days after written notice from the Trustee or the Holders of not less than [   ]% in the aggregate principal amount of the Securities of such Series then outstanding, which notice must specify the Default, demand that it be remedied and state that the notice is a “Notice of Default”;

 

(4) the Company or any Significant Subsidiary pursuant to or within the meaning of any Bankruptcy Law:

 

(A) commences a voluntary case,

 

(B) consents to the entry of an order for relief against it in an involuntary case,

 

(C) consents to the appointment of a Custodian of it or for all or substantially all of its property,

 

(D) makes a general assignment for the benefit of its creditors, or

 

(E) generally is not paying its debts as they become due;

 

(5) a court of competent jurisdiction enters an order or decree under any Bankruptcy Law that:

 

(A) is for relief against the Company or any Significant Subsidiary in an involuntary case;

 

(B) appoints a Custodian of the Company or any Significant Subsidiary, or for all or substantially all of the property of the Company or any Significant Subsidiary; or

 

(C) orders the liquidation of the Company or any Significant Subsidiary, and the order or decree remains unstayed and in effect for [  ] consecutive days; or

 

(6) any other Event of Default provided with respect to Securities of that Series, which is specified in a Board Resolution, a supplemental indenture hereto or an Officers’ Certificate, in accordance with Section 2.2(19).

 

The term “Bankruptcy Law” means Title 11, U.S. Code, or any similar federal or state law for the relief of debtors. The term “Custodian” means any receiver, trustee, assignee, liquidator or similar official under any Bankruptcy Law.

 

The Trustee may withhold notice of any Default (except in the payment of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, the Securities) to the Holders of the Securities of any Series in accordance with Section 7.5. When a Default is cured, it ceases to exist.

 

6.2. ACCELERATION.

 

If an Event of Default with respect to Securities of any Series at the time outstanding (other than an Event of Default arising under Section 6.1(4) or (5)) occurs and is continuing, the Trustee by written notice to the Company, or the Holders of not less than [  ]% in aggregate principal amount of the Securities of that Series then outstanding by written notice to the Company and the Trustee, may declare that the entire principal amount of all the Securities of that Series then outstanding plus accrued and unpaid interest to the date of acceleration are immediately due and payable, in which case such amounts shall become immediately due and payable; PROVIDED, HOWEVER, that after such acceleration but before a judgment or decree based on such acceleration is obtained by the Trustee, the Holders of a majority in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding Securities of that Series may rescind and annul such acceleration and its consequences if (i) all existing Events of Default, other than the nonpayment of accelerated principal, interest or premium, if any, that has become due solely because of the acceleration, have been cured or waived, (ii) to the extent the payment of such interest is lawful, interest on overdue installments of interest and overdue principal, which has become due otherwise than by such declaration of acceleration, has been paid and (iii) the rescission would not conflict with any judgment or decree. No such rescission shall affect any subsequent Default or impair any right consequent thereto. In case an Event of Default specified in Section 6.1(4) or (5) with respect to the Company occurs, such principal, premium, if any, and interest amount with respect to all of the Securities of that Series shall be due and payable immediately without any declaration or other act on the part of the Trustee or the Holders of the Securities of that Series.

 

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6.3. REMEDIES.

 

If an Event of Default with respect to Securities of any Series at the time outstanding occurs and is continuing, the Trustee may pursue any available remedy by proceeding at law or in equity to collect the payment of the principal of, or interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities of that Series, or to enforce the performance of any provision of the Securities of that Series or this Indenture.

 

The Trustee may maintain a proceeding even if it does not possess any of the Securities of that Series or does not produce any of them in the proceeding. A delay or omission by the Trustee or any Securityholder in exercising any right or remedy accruing upon an Event of Default shall not impair the right or remedy or constitute a waiver of or acquiescence in the Event of Default. No remedy is exclusive of any other remedy. All available remedies are cumulative to the extent permitted by law.

 

6.4. WAIVER OF PAST DEFAULTS AND EVENTS OF DEFAULT.

 

Subject to Sections 6.2, 6.7 and 8.2, the Holders of a majority in principal amount of the Securities of any Series then outstanding have the right to waive any existing Default or Event of Default with respect to such Series or compliance with any provision of this Indenture (with respect to such Series) or the Securities of such Series. Upon any such waiver, such Default with respect to such Series shall cease to exist, and any Event of Default with respect to such Series arising therefrom shall be deemed to have been cured for every purpose of this Indenture; but no such waiver shall extend to any subsequent or other Default or Event of Default or impair any right consequent thereto. This Section 6.4 shall be in lieu of TIA Section 316(a)(1)(B), and TIA Section 316(a)(1)(B) is hereby expressly excluded from this Indenture and Section as permitted by the TIA.

 

6.5. CONTROL BY MAJORITY.

 

Subject to Sections 6.2, 6.7 and 8.2, the Holders of a majority in principal amount of the Securities of any Series then outstanding may direct the time, method and place of conducting any proceeding for any remedy available to the Trustee or exercising any trust or power conferred on the Trustee by this Indenture with respect to such Series. The Trustee, however, may refuse to follow any direction that conflicts with law or this Indenture, or that the Trustee determines may be unduly prejudicial to the rights of another Securityholder, or that may involve the Trustee in personal liability; PROVIDED, that the Trustee may take any other action deemed proper by the Trustee which is not inconsistent with such direction. This Section 6.5 shall be in lieu of TIA Section 316(a)(1)(A), and TIA Section 316(a)(1)(A) is hereby expressly excluded from this Indenture and Section as permitted by the TIA.

 

6.6. LIMITATION ON SUITS.

 

Subject to Section 6.7, a Securityholder may not institute any proceeding or pursue any remedy with respect to this Indenture or the Securities of a Series unless:

 

(1) the Holder gives to the Trustee written notice of a continuing Event of Default with respect to the Securities of that Series;

 

(2) the Holders of at least [   ]% in aggregate principal amount of the Securities of such Series then outstanding make a written request to the Trustee to pursue the remedy;

 

(3) such Holder or Holders offer to the Trustee indemnity reasonably satisfactory to the Trustee against any loss, liability or expense to be incurred in compliance with such request;

 

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(4) the Trustee does not comply with the request within [  ] days after receipt of the request and the offer of indemnity; and

 

(5) no direction inconsistent with such written request has been given to the Trustee during such [  ]-day period by the Holders of a majority in aggregate principal amount of the Securities of such Series then outstanding.

 

A Securityholder may not use this Indenture to prejudice the rights of another Securityholder, or to obtain a preference or priority over another Securityholder.

 

6.7. RIGHTS OF HOLDERS TO RECEIVE PAYMENT.

 

Notwithstanding any other provision of this Indenture, the right of any Holder of a Security of a Series to receive payment of the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Security of such Series on or after the respective due dates expressed in the Security of such Series, or to bring suit for the enforcement of any such payment on or after such respective dates, is absolute and unconditional, and shall not be impaired or affected without the consent of the Holder.

 

6.8. COLLECTION SUIT BY TRUSTEE.

 

If an Event of Default in payment of principal, interest or premium, if any, specified in Section 6.1(1) or (2) with respect to Securities of any Series at the time outstanding occurs and is continuing, the Trustee may recover judgment in its own name and as trustee of an express trust against the Company (or any other obligor on the Securities of that Series) for the whole amount of unpaid principal and premium, if any, and accrued interest remaining unpaid, together with interest on overdue principal and premium, if any, and, to the extent that payment of such interest is lawful, interest on overdue installments of interest, in each case at the rate then borne by the Securities of that Series, and such further amounts as shall be sufficient to cover the costs and expenses of collection, including the reasonable compensation, expenses, disbursements and advances of the Trustee, its agents and counsel, as set forth in Section 7.7.

 

6.9. TRUSTEE MAY FILE PROOFS OF CLAIM.

 

The Trustee may file such proofs of claim and other papers or documents, and take other actions (including sitting on a committee of creditors), as may be necessary or advisable in order to have the claims of the Trustee (including any claim for the reasonable compensation, expenses, disbursements and advances of the Trustee, its agents and counsel) and the Securityholders allowed in any judicial proceedings relative to the Company (or any other obligor on the Securities), any of their respective creditors or any of their respective property, and the Trustee shall be entitled and empowered to collect and receive any monies or other property payable or deliverable on any such claims, and to distribute the same after deduction of its charges and expenses to the extent that any such charges and expenses are not paid out of the estate in any such proceedings, and any custodian in any such judicial proceeding is hereby authorized by each Securityholder to make such payments to the Trustee, and in the event that the Trustee shall consent to the making of such payments directly to the Securityholders, to pay to the Trustee any amount due to it for the reasonable compensation, expenses, disbursements and advances of the Trustee, its agents and counsel, and any other amounts due the Trustee under Section 7.7.

 

Nothing herein contained shall be deemed to authorize the Trustee to authorize or consent to, or accept or adopt on behalf of any Securityholder, any plan of reorganization, arrangement, adjustment or composition affecting the Securities of a Series or the rights of any Holder thereof, or to authorize the Trustee to vote in respect of the claim of any Securityholder in any such proceedings.

 

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6.10. PRIORITIES.

 

If the Trustee collects any money pursuant to this Article 6, it shall pay out the money in the following order:

 

FIRST: to the Trustee for amounts due under Section 7.7;

 

SECOND: to Securityholders for amounts then due and unpaid for the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities in respect of which, or for the benefit of which, such money has been collected, ratably, without preference or priority of any kind, according to the amounts due and payable on such Securities; for principal and any premium and interest, respectively; and

 

THIRD: to the Company.

 

The Trustee may fix a record date and payment date for any payment to Securityholders pursuant to this Section 6.10. At least [  ] days before such record date, the Trustee shall mail to each Securityholder a notice that states the record date, the payment date and amount to be paid.

 

6.11. UNDERTAKING FOR COSTS.

 

In any suit for the enforcement of any right or remedy under this Indenture, or in any suit against the Trustee for any action taken or omitted by it as Trustee, a court in its discretion may require the filing by any party litigant in the suit of an undertaking to pay the costs of the suit, and the court in its discretion may assess reasonable costs, including reasonable attorneys’ fees, against any party litigant in the suit, having due regard to the merits and good faith of the claims or defenses made by the party litigant. This Section 6.11 does not apply to a suit by the Trustee, a suit by a Holder pursuant to Section 6.7 or a suit by Holders of more than [  ]% in principal amount of the Securities of a Series then outstanding.

 

ARTICLE 7

 

TRUSTEE

 

7.1. DUTIES OF TRUSTEE.

 

(a) If an Event of Default has occurred and is continuing, the Trustee shall exercise such of the rights and powers vested in it by this Indenture and use the same degree of care and skill in their exercise as a prudent Person would exercise or use under the same circumstances in the conduct of his own affairs.

 

(b) Except during the continuance of an Event of Default:

 

(1) The Trustee need perform only those duties that are specifically set forth in this Indenture, and no covenants or obligations shall be implied in this Indenture against the Trustee.

 

(2) In the absence of bad faith on its part, the Trustee may conclusively rely, as to the truth of the statements and the correctness of the opinions expressed therein, upon certificates or opinions furnished to the Trustee and conforming to the requirements of this Indenture, but, in the case of any such certificates or opinions which by any provision hereof are specifically required to be furnished to the Trustee, the Trustee shall be under a duty to examine the same to determine whether or not they conform to the requirements of this Indenture.

 

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(c) The Trustee may not be relieved from liability for its own negligent action, its own negligent failure to act or its own willful misconduct, except that:

 

(1) This paragraph does not limit the effect of paragraph (b) of this Section 7.1.

 

(2) The Trustee shall not be liable for any error of judgment made in good faith by a Responsible Officer, unless it is proved that the Trustee was negligent in ascertaining the pertinent facts.

 

(3) The Trustee shall not be liable with respect to any action it takes or omits to take in good faith in accordance with a direction received by it pursuant to Sections 6.2 and 6.5.

 

(d) No provision of this Indenture shall require the Trustee to expend or risk its own funds, or otherwise incur any financial liability, in the performance of any of its rights or powers if it shall have reasonable grounds for believing that repayment of such funds or adequate indemnity satisfactory to it against such risk or liability is not reasonably assured to it.

 

(e) Whether or not therein expressly so provided, paragraphs (a), (b), (c) and (d) of this Section 7.1 shall govern every provision of this Indenture that in any way relates to the Trustee.

 

(f) The Trustee and Paying Agent shall not be liable for interest on any money received by either of them, except as the Trustee and Paying Agent may agree in writing with the Company. Money held in trust by the Trustee need not be segregated from other funds except to the extent required by the law.

 

(g) The Paying Agent, the Registrar and any authenticating agent shall be entitled to the protections, immunities and standard of care set forth in paragraphs (a), (b), (c), (d) and (f) of this Section 7.1 and in Section 7.2 with respect to the Trustee.

 

7.2. RIGHTS OF TRUSTEE.

 

(a) Subject to Section 7.1:

 

(1) The Trustee may rely on, and shall be protected in acting or refraining from acting upon, any document reasonably believed by it to be genuine and to have been signed or presented by the proper Person. The Trustee need not investigate any fact or matter stated in the document.

 

(2) Before the Trustee acts or refrains from acting, it may require an Officers’ Certificate or an Opinion of Counsel, or both, which shall conform to the provisions of Section 10.5. The Trustee shall be protected and shall not be liable for any action it takes or omits to take in good faith in reliance on such certificate or opinion.

 

(3) The Trustee may act through agents and attorneys, and shall not be responsible for the misconduct or negligence of any agent appointed by it with due care.

 

(4) The Trustee shall not be liable for any action it takes or omits to take in good faith which it reasonably believes to be authorized or within its rights or powers.

 

(5) The Trustee may consult with counsel reasonably acceptable to the Trustee, which may be counsel to the Company, and the advice or opinion of such counsel as to matters of law shall be full and complete authorization and protection from liability in respect of any action taken, omitted or suffered by it hereunder in good faith and in accordance with the advice or opinion of such counsel.

 

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(6) The Trustee shall be under no obligation to exercise any of the rights or powers vested in it by this Indenture at the request, order or direction of any of the Holders pursuant to the provisions of this Indenture, unless such Holders shall have offered to the Trustee reasonable security or indemnity against the costs, expenses and liabilities which may be incurred therein or thereby.

 

(7) The Trustee shall not be deemed to have knowledge of any fact or matter (including, without limitation, a Default or Event of Default) unless such fact or matter is known to a Responsible Officer of the Trustee.

 

(8) Unless otherwise expressly provided herein or in the Securities of a Series or the related Board Resolution, supplemental indenture or Officers’ Certificate, the Trustee shall not have any responsibility with respect to reports, notices, certificates or other documents filed with it hereunder, except to make them available for inspection, at reasonable times, by Securityholders, it being understood that delivery of such reports, information and documents to the Trustee is for informational purposes only and the Trustee’s receipt of such shall not constitute constructive notice of any information contained therein or determinable from information contained therein, including the Company’s compliance with any of its covenants hereunder (except as set forth in Section 4.4).

 

7.3. INDIVIDUAL RIGHTS OF TRUSTEE.

 

The Trustee in its individual or any other capacity may become the owner or pledgee of Securities, and may make loans to, accept deposits from, perform services for or otherwise deal with the Company, or any Affiliate thereof, with the same rights it would have if it were not Trustee. Any Agent may do the same with like rights. The Trustee, however, shall be subject to Sections 7.10 and 7.11.

 

7.4. TRUSTEE’S DISCLAIMER.

 

The Trustee makes no representation as to the validity or adequacy of this Indenture or the Securities (except that the Trustee represents that it is duly authorized to execute and deliver this Indenture and authenticate the Securities and perform its obligations hereunder), and the Trustee shall not be accountable for the Company’s use of the proceeds from the sale of Securities or any money paid to the Company pursuant to the terms of this Indenture, and the Trustee shall not be responsible for any statement in the Securities other than its certificates of authentication.

 

7.5. NOTICE OF DEFAULT.

 

If a Default or an Event of Default occurs and is continuing with respect to the Securities of any Series, and if it is known to the Trustee, the Trustee shall mail to each Securityholder of the Securities of that Series notice of the Default or the Event of Default, as the case may be, within [  ] days after it occurs or, if later, after a Responsible Officer of the Trustee has knowledge of such Default or Event of Default (except if such Default or Event of Default has been validly cured or waived before the giving of such notice). Except in the case of a Default or an Event of Default in payment of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, any Security of any Series, the Trustee may withhold the notice if and so long as the Board of Directors of the Trustee, the executive committee or any trust committee of such board and/or its Responsible Officers in good faith determine(s) that withholding the notice is in the interests of the Securityholders of that Series.

 

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7.6. REPORTS BY TRUSTEE TO HOLDERS.

 

If and to the extent required by the TIA, within 60 days after April 1 of each year, commencing the April 1 following the date of this Indenture, the Trustee shall mail to each Securityholder a brief report dated as of such April 1 that complies with TIA Section 313(a). The Trustee also shall comply with TIA Sections 313(b) and 313(c).

 

A copy of each report at the time of its mailing to Securityholders shall be filed with the SEC and any stock exchange on which the Securities of that Series are listed. The Company shall promptly notify the Trustee when the Securities of any Series are listed on any stock exchange or any delisting thereof, and the Trustee shall comply with TIA Section 313(d).

 

7.7. COMPENSATION AND INDEMNITY.

 

The Company shall pay to the Trustee from time to time reasonable compensation for its services. The Trustee’s compensation shall not be limited by any provision of law on compensation of a trustee of an express trust. The Company shall reimburse the Trustee within [  ] days after receipt of request for all reasonable out-of-pocket disbursements and expenses incurred or made by it in connection with its duties under this Indenture, including the reasonable compensation, disbursements and expenses of the Trustee’s agents and counsel.

 

The Company shall indemnify the Trustee for, and hold it harmless against, any and all loss or liability incurred by it in connection with the acceptance or performance of its duties under this Indenture including the reasonable costs and expenses of defending itself against any claim or liability in connection with the exercise or performance of any of its powers or duties hereunder. The Trustee shall notify the Company promptly of any claim asserted against the Trustee for which it may seek indemnity.

 

The failure by the Trustee to so notify the Company shall not however relieve the Company of its obligations. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Company need not reimburse the Trustee for any expense or indemnify it against any loss or liability incurred by the Trustee through its negligence or bad faith. To secure the payment obligations of the Company in this Section 7.7, the Trustee shall have a lien prior to the Securities of any Series on all money or property held or collected by the Trustee except such money or property held in trust to pay the principal of, interest and premium, if any, on particular Securities of that Series.

 

When the Trustee incurs expenses or renders services after an Event of Default specified in Section 6.1(4) or (5) occurs, the expenses and the compensation for the services are intended to constitute expenses of administration under any Bankruptcy Law.

 

For purposes of this Section 7.7, the term “Trustee” shall include any trustee appointed pursuant to this Article 7.

 

7.8. REPLACEMENT OF TRUSTEE.

 

The Trustee may resign with respect to the Securities of one or more Series by so notifying the Company in writing at least [  ] days in advance of such resignation.

 

The Holders of a majority in principal amount of the outstanding Securities of any Series may remove the Trustee with respect to that Series by notifying the removed Trustee in writing and may appoint a successor Trustee with respect to that Series with the consent of the Company, which consent shall not be unreasonably withheld. The Company may remove the Trustee with respect to that Series at its election if:

 

(1) the Trustee fails to comply with, or ceases to be eligible under, Section 7.10;

 

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(2) the Trustee is adjudged a bankrupt or an insolvent, or an order for relief is entered with respect to the Trustee, under any Bankruptcy Law;

 

(3) a Custodian or other public officer takes charge of the Trustee or its property; or

 

(4) the Trustee otherwise becomes incapable of acting.

 

(5) If the Trustee resigns or is removed, or if a vacancy exists in the office of Trustee, with respect to any Series of Securities for any reason, the Company shall promptly appoint, by Board Resolution, a successor Trustee.

 

If a successor Trustee with respect to the Securities of one or more Series does not take office within [  ] days after the retiring Trustee resigns or is removed, the retiring Trustee, the Company or the Holders of at least [  ]% in principal amount of the outstanding Securities of the applicable Series may petition any court of competent jurisdiction for the appointment of a successor Trustee.

 

If the Trustee with respect to the Securities of one or more Series fails to comply with Section 7.10, any Securityholder of the applicable Series may petition any court of competent jurisdiction for the removal of the Trustee and the appointment of a successor Trustee.

 

A successor Trustee shall deliver a written acceptance of its appointment to the retiring Trustee and to the Company. Immediately following such delivery, (i) the retiring Trustee with respect to one or more Series shall, subject to its rights under Section 7.7, transfer all property held by it as Trustee with respect to such Series to the successor Trustee, (ii) the resignation or removal of the retiring Trustee shall become effective and (iii) the successor Trustee with respect to such Series shall have all the rights, powers and duties of the Trustee under this Indenture. A successor Trustee with respect to the Securities of one or more Series shall mail notice of its succession to each Securityholder of such Series.

 

7.9. SUCCESSOR TRUSTEE BY CONSOLIDATION, MERGER OR CONVERSION.

 

If the Trustee, or any Agent, consolidates with, merges or converts into, or transfers all or substantially all of its corporate trust assets to, another corporation, subject to Section 7.10, the successor corporation without any further act shall be the successor Trustee or Agent, as the case may be.

 

7.10. ELIGIBILITY; DISQUALIFICATION.

 

This Indenture shall always have a Trustee who satisfies the requirements of TIA Sections 310(a)(1), (2) and (5) in every respect. The Trustee (or in the case of a Trustee that is a Person included in a bank holding company system, the related bank holding company) shall have a combined capital and surplus of at least $100,000,000 as set forth in its most recent published annual report of condition. The Trustee shall comply with TIA Section 310(b), including the provision in Section 310(b)(1). In addition, if the Trustee is a Person included in a bank holding company system, the Trustee, independently of such bank holding company, shall meet the capital requirements of TIA Section 310(a)(2). If at any time the Trustee shall cease to be eligible in accordance with the provisions of this Section 7.10, it shall resign immediately in the manner and with the effect specified in this Article 7.

 

7.11. PREFERENTIAL COLLECTION OF CLAIMS AGAINST COMPANY.

 

The Trustee shall comply with TIA Section 311(a), excluding any creditor relationship listed in TIA Section 311(b). A Trustee who has resigned or been removed shall be subject to TIA Section 311(a) to the extent indicated therein.

 

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7.12. PAYING AGENTS.

 

The Company shall cause each Paying Agent other than the Trustee to execute and deliver to it and the Trustee an instrument in which such agent shall agree with the Trustee, subject to the provisions of this Section 7.12:

 

(1) that it will hold all sums held by it as agent for the payment of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, the Securities (whether such sums have been paid to it by the Company or by any obligor on the Securities) in trust for the benefit of Holders of the Securities or the Trustee;

 

(2) that it will at any time during the continuance of any Event of Default, upon written request from the Trustee, deliver to the Trustee all sums so held in trust by it together with a full accounting thereof; and

 

(3) that it will give the Trustee written notice within three Business Days after any failure of the Company (or by any obligor on the Securities) in the payment of any installment of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, the Securities when the same shall be due and payable.

 

ARTICLE 8

 

AMENDMENTS, SUPPLEMENTS AND WAIVERS

 

8.1. WITHOUT CONSENT OF HOLDERS.

 

The Company, when authorized by a Board Resolution, and the Trustee may amend or supplement this Indenture or the Securities of one or more Series without notice to or consent of any Securityholder:

 

(1) to comply with Section 5.1;

 

(2) to provide for certificated Securities in addition to uncertificated Securities;

 

(3) to comply with any requirements of the SEC under the TIA;

 

(4) to cure any ambiguity, defect or inconsistency, or to make any other change herein or in the Securities that does not materially and adversely affect the rights of any Securityholder;

 

(5) to provide for the issuance of, and establish the form and terms and conditions of, Securities of any Series as permitted by this Indenture; or

 

(6) to evidence and provide for the acceptance of appointment hereunder by a successor Trustee with respect to the Securities of one or more Series, and to add to or change any of the provisions of this Indenture as shall be necessary to provide for or facilitate the administration of the trusts hereunder by more than one Trustee.

 

The Trustee is hereby authorized to join with the Company in the execution of any supplemental indenture authorized or permitted by the terms of this Indenture, and to make any further appropriate agreements and stipulations which may be therein contained, but the Trustee shall not be obligated to enter into any such supplemental indenture which adversely affects its own rights, duties or immunities under this Indenture.

 

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8.2. WITH CONSENT OF HOLDERS.

 

(a) The Company, when authorized by a Board Resolution, and the Trustee may amend or supplement this Indenture or the Securities of one or more Series with the written consent of the Holders of not less than a majority in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding Securities of such Series affected by such amendment or supplement without notice to any Securityholder. The Holders of not less than a majority in aggregate principal amount of the outstanding Securities of each such Series affected by such amendment or supplement may waive compliance by the Company in a particular instance with any provision of this Indenture or the Securities of such Series without notice to any Securityholder. Subject to Section 8.4, without the consent of each Securityholder affected, however, an amendment, supplement or waiver may not:

 

(1) reduce the amount of Securities whose Holders must consent to an amendment, supplement or waiver to this Indenture or the Securities;

 

(2) reduce the rate of, or change the time for payment of, interest on any Security;

 

(3) reduce the principal, or change the Stated Maturity, of any Security, or reduce the amount of, or postpone the date fixed for, the payment of any sinking fund or analogous obligation;

 

(4) make any Security payable in money other than that stated in the Security;

 

(5) change the amount or time of any payment required by the Securities, or reduce the premium payable upon any redemption of the Securities, or change the time before which no such redemption may be made;

 

(6) waive a Default or Event of Default in the payment of the principal of, or interest or premium, if any, on, any Security (except a rescission of acceleration of the Securities of any Series by the Holders of at least a majority in principal amount of the outstanding Securities of such Series and a waiver of the payment default that resulted from such acceleration);

 

(7) waive a redemption payment with respect to any Security, or change any of the provisions with respect to the redemption of any Securities;

 

(8) make any changes in Section 6.6 or this Section 8.2, except to increase any percentage of Securities the Holders of which must consent to any matter; or

 

(9) take any other action otherwise prohibited by this Indenture to be taken without the consent of each Holder affected thereby.

 

(b) Upon the request of the Company, accompanied by a Board Resolution authorizing the execution of any such supplemental indenture, and upon the receipt by the Trustee of evidence reasonably satisfactory to the Trustee of the consent of the Securityholders as aforesaid and of the documents described in Section 8.6, the Trustee shall join with the Company in the execution of such supplemental indenture, unless such supplemental indenture affects the Trustee’s own rights, duties or immunities under this Indenture, in which case the Trustee may in its discretion, but shall not be obligated to, enter into such supplemental indenture.

 

(c) It shall not be necessary for the consent of the Holders under this section to approve the particular form of any proposed amendment, supplement or waiver, but it shall be sufficient if such consent approves the substance thereof.

 

After an amendment or supplement under this Section becomes effective, the Company shall mail to Securityholders a notice briefly describing the amendment or supplement. Any failure of the Company to mail any such notice, or any defect therein, shall not, however, in any way impair or affect the validity of any supplemental indenture.

 

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8.3. COMPLIANCE WITH TRUST INDENTURE ACT.

 

Every amendment to, or supplement of, this Indenture or the Securities shall comply with the TIA as then in effect.

 

8.4. REVOCATION AND EFFECT OF CONSENTS.

 

Until an amendment, supplement, waiver or other action becomes effective, a consent to it by a Holder of a Security is a continuing consent conclusive and binding upon such Holder and every subsequent Holder of the same Security or portion thereof, and of any Security issued upon the transfer thereof or in exchange therefor or in place thereof, even if notation of the consent is not made on any such Security. Any such Holder or subsequent Holder, however, may revoke the consent as to his Security or portion of a Security, if the Trustee receives the notice of revocation before the date the amendment, supplement, waiver or other action becomes effective.

 

The Company may, but shall not be obligated to, fix a record date for the purpose of determining the Holders entitled to consent to any amendment, supplement or waiver, which record date shall be at least [  ] days prior to the first solicitation of such consent. If a record date is fixed, then, notwithstanding the preceding paragraph, those Persons who were Holders at such record date (or their duly designated proxies), and only such Persons, shall be entitled to consent to such amendment, supplement or waiver, or to revoke any consent previously given, whether or not such Persons continue to be Holders after such record date.

 

After an amendment, supplement, waiver or other action becomes effective, it shall bind every Securityholder, unless it makes a change described in any of clauses (1) through (9) of Section 8.2. In that case, the amendment, supplement, waiver or other action shall bind each Holder of a Security who has consented to it and every subsequent Holder of a Security or portion of a Security that evidences the same debt as the consenting Holder’s Security; PROVIDED, that any such waiver shall not impair or affect the right of any Holder to receive payment of the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, a Security, on or after the respective due dates expressed in such Security, or to bring suit for the enforcement of any such payment on or after such respective dates without the consent of such Holder.

 

8.5. NOTATION ON OR EXCHANGE OF SECURITIES.

 

If an amendment, supplement or waiver changes the terms of a Security of any Series, the Trustee may request the Holder of such Security to deliver it to the Trustee. In such case, the Trustee shall place an appropriate notation on such Security about the changed terms and return it to the Holder. Alternatively, the Company, in exchange for such Security, may issue, and the Trustee shall authenticate, a new security that reflects the changed terms. Failure to make the appropriate notation or issue a new Security shall not affect the validity and effect of such amendment, supplement or waiver.

 

8.6. TRUSTEE TO SIGN AMENDMENTS, ETC.

 

The Trustee shall sign any amendment, supplement or waiver authorized pursuant to this Article 8 if the amendment, supplement or waiver does not adversely affect the rights, duties, liabilities or immunities of the Trustee. If it does, the Trustee may, but need not, sign it. In signing or refusing to sign such amendment, supplement or waiver the Trustee shall be entitled to receive and, subject to Section 7.1, shall be fully protected in relying upon an Officers’ Certificate and an Opinion of Counsel stating that such amendment, supplement or waiver is authorized or permitted by this Indenture. The Company may not sign an amendment or supplement until the Board of Directors of the Company approves it.

 

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ARTICLE 9

 

DISCHARGE OF INDENTURE; DEFEASANCE

 

9.1. DISCHARGE OF INDENTURE.

 

The Company may terminate its obligations under the Securities of any Series and this Indenture with respect to such Series, except the obligations referred to in the last paragraph of this Section 9.1, if there shall have been canceled by the Trustee, or delivered to the Trustee for cancellation, all Securities of such Series theretofore authenticated and delivered (other than any Securities of such Series that are asserted to have been destroyed, lost or stolen and that shall have been replaced as provided in Section 2.8) and the Company has paid all sums payable by it hereunder or deposited all required sums with the Trustee.

 

After such delivery the Trustee upon request shall acknowledge in a writing prepared by or on behalf of the Company the discharge of the Company’s obligations under the Securities of such Series and this Indenture, except for those surviving obligations specified below.

 

Notwithstanding the satisfaction and discharge of this Indenture, the obligations of the Company in Sections 7.7, 9.5 and 9.6 shall survive.

 

9.2. LEGAL DEFEASANCE.

 

The Company may at its option, by Board Resolution, be discharged from its obligations with respect to the Securities of any Series on the date upon which the conditions set forth in Section 9.4 below are satisfied (hereinafter, “Legal Defeasance”). For this purpose, such Legal Defeasance means that the Company shall be deemed to have paid and discharged the entire indebtedness represented by the Securities of such Series and to have satisfied all its other obligations under such Securities and this Indenture insofar as such Securities are concerned (and the Trustee, at the expense of the Company, shall, subject to Section 9.6, execute proper instruments acknowledging the same, as are delivered to it by the Company), except for the following, which shall survive until otherwise terminated or discharged hereunder: (A) the rights of Holders of outstanding Securities of such Series to receive solely from the trust funds described in Section 9.4 and as more fully set forth in such section, payments in respect of the principal of, and interest and premium, if any, on, the Securities of such Series when such payments are due, (B) the Company’s obligations with respect to the Securities of such Series under Sections 2.4, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 2.8 and 2.9, (C) the rights, powers, trusts, duties and immunities of the Trustee hereunder (including claims of, or payments to, the Trustee under or pursuant to Section 7.7) and (D) this Article 9. Subject to compliance with this Article 9, the Company may exercise its option under this Section 9.2 with respect to the Securities of any Series notwithstanding the prior exercise of its option under Section 9.3 below with respect to the Securities of such Series.

 

9.3. COVENANT DEFEASANCE.

 

At the option of the Company, pursuant to a Board Resolution, the Company shall be released from its obligations with respect to the outstanding Securities of any Series under Sections 4.2 through 4.5, inclusive, and Section 5.1, with respect to the outstanding Securities of such Series, on and after the date the conditions set forth in Section 9.4 are satisfied (hereinafter, “Covenant Defeasance”). For this purpose, such Covenant Defeasance means that the Company may omit to comply with and shall have no liability in respect of any term, condition or limitation set forth in any such specified section or portion thereof, whether directly or indirectly by reason of any reference elsewhere herein to any such specified Section or portion thereof or by reason of any reference in any such specified section or portion thereof to any other provision herein or in any other document, but the remainder of this Indenture and the Securities of any Series shall be unaffected thereby.

 

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9.4. CONDITIONS TO LEGAL DEFEASANCE OR COVENANT DEFEASANCE.

 

The following shall be the conditions to application of Section 9.2 or Section 9.3 to the outstanding Securities of a Series:

 

(1) the Company shall irrevocably have deposited or caused to be deposited with the Trustee (or another trustee satisfying the requirements of Section 7.10 who shall agree to comply with the provisions of this Article 9 applicable to it) as funds in trust for the purpose of making the following payments, specifically pledged as security for, and dedicated solely to, the benefit of the Holders of the Securities, (A) money in an amount, or (B) U.S. Government Obligations or Foreign Government Obligations which through the scheduled payment of principal and interest in respect thereof in accordance with their terms will provide, not later than the due date of any payment, money in an amount, or (C) a combination thereof, sufficient, in the opinion of a nationally recognized firm of independent public accountants expressed in a written certification thereof delivered to the Trustee, to pay and discharge, and which shall be applied by the Trustee (or other qualifying trustee) to pay and discharge, the principal of, and accrued interest and premium, if any, on, the outstanding Securities of such Series at the Stated Maturity of such principal, interest or premium, if any, or on dates for payment and redemption of such principal, interest and premium, if any, selected in accordance with the terms of this Indenture and of the Securities of such Series;

 

(2) no Event of Default or Default with respect to the Securities of such Series shall have occurred and be continuing on the date of such deposit, or shall have occurred and be continuing at any time during the period ending on the 91st day after the date of such deposit or, if longer, ending on the day following the expiration of the longest preference period under any Bankruptcy Law applicable to the Company in respect of such deposit as specified in the Opinion of Counsel identified in paragraph (8) below (it being understood that this condition shall not be deemed satisfied until the expiration of such period);

 

(3) such Legal Defeasance or Covenant Defeasance shall not cause the Trustee to have a conflicting interest for purposes of the TIA with respect to any securities of the Company;

 

(4) such Legal Defeasance or Covenant Defeasance shall not result in a breach or violation of, or constitute default under, any other agreement or instrument to which the Company is a party or by which it is bound;

 

(5) the Company shall have delivered to the Trustee an Opinion of Counsel stating that, as a result of such Legal Defeasance or Covenant Defeasance, neither the trust nor the Trustee will be required to register as an investment company under the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended;

 

(6) in the case of an election under Section 9.2, the Company shall have delivered to the Trustee an Opinion of Counsel stating that (i) the Company has received from, or there has been published by, the Internal Revenue Service a ruling to the effect that or (ii) there has been a change in any applicable Federal income tax law with the effect that, and such opinion shall confirm that, the Holders of the outstanding Securities of such Series or Persons in their positions will not recognize income, gain or loss for Federal income tax purposes solely as a result of such Legal Defeasance and will be subject to Federal income tax on the same amounts, in the same manner, including as a result of prepayment, and at the same times as would have been the case if such Legal Defeasance had not occurred;

 

(7) in the case of an election under Section 9.3, the Company shall have delivered to the Trustee an Opinion of Counsel to the effect that the Holders of the outstanding Securities of such Series will not recognize income, gain or loss for Federal income tax purposes as a result of such Covenant Defeasance, and will be subject to Federal income tax on the same amounts, in the same manner and at the same times as would have been the case if such Covenant Defeasance had not occurred;

 

(8) the Company shall have delivered to the Trustee an Officers’ Certificate and an Opinion of Counsel, each stating that all conditions precedent provided for in this Article 9 relating to either the Legal Defeasance under Section 9.2 or the Covenant Defeasance under Section 9.3 (as the case may be) have been complied with;

 

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