Law Blog Category: Public Shell Company
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) today suspended the trading in 379 dormant shell companies. This is the most trading suspensions in a single day in the history of the SEC. The trading suspensions are part of an SEC initiative tabbed Operation Shell-Expel by the SEC’s Microcap Fraud Working Group. Each of the companies was a dormant shell that was lacking any and all public disclosures. That is, each of the companies failed to have adequate current public information available either through the news service on OTC Markets or filed with the SEC via EDGAR.
I have explored the topic of promissory notes in previous articles. This analysis shall specifically concentrate on convertible promissory notes.
As a reminder, a promissory note is a written promise by a person, persons or entity to pay a specific amount of money (called “principal”) to another, usually to include a specified amount of interest on the unpaid principal amount. In addition, a promissory note will include the basic specifics of the debt, including the debtor and creditor, when payment or payments are due, interest rates, if the debt is secured, and whether the debt may be converted into stock or other equity. A promissory note that may be converted is often referred to as either a debenture or a convertible promissory note.
One of the most common inquiries received by securities attorneys today involves Issuers wanting to know when they and their shareholders can sell their shares on the open market following a merger with a Pink Sheet shell. In many cases, the answer they get is not the answer they want; twelve months after the Pink Sheet Company becomes a fully reporting entity.