Law Blog Tag: 506 Offering

SEC Extends Valuable Guidance to Determine and Verify Accredited Investors

Proposed Rules Eliminating the Prohibition Against General Solicitation and Advertising in Rules 506 and 144A Offerings – Part II

As required by Title II of the JOBS Act, the SEC has published proposed rules eliminating the prohibition against general solicitation and advertising in Rules 506 and 144A offerings. In a move that is widely supported by legal practitioners, including the Federal Regulation of Securities Committee of the Business Law Section of the American Bar Association, the SEC has proposed simple modifications to Regulation D and Rule 144A mirroring the JOBS Act requirement. The entire text of the rule release is available on the SEC website.

What is an Accredited Investor or a Qualified Institutional Investor Anyway?

Title II of the JOBS Act provides that the SEC will amend Section 4(2) of the Securities Act of 1933 and Regulation D promulgated there under, to eliminate the prohibition on general solicitation and general advertising in a Rule 506 offering, so long as all purchasers in such offering are accredited investors. The JOBS Act directs the SEC to make the same amendment to Rule 144A so long as all purchasers in the Rule 144A offering are qualified institutional buyers. Neither a Rule 506 offering nor a Rule 144A offering will be considered a public offering (i.e. will lose its exemption) by virtue of a general solicitation or general advertising so long as the issuer has taken reasonable steps to verify that purchasers are either accredited investors or qualified institutional buyers, respectively. Since it would be impossible to ensure that only accredited investors, or qualified institutional buyers, receive, review or become aware of general solicitations and advertisements, the rule focuses on ensuring that the purchasers qualify.