PACIFIC DATAVISION, INC.
September 15, 2014
An investment in our common stock involves a high degree of risk and should be considered highly speculative. Before making an investment decision, you should carefully consider the following risk factors, which address the material risks concerning our business and an investment in our common stock.. If any of the risks discussed below, our business, prospects, liquidity, financial condition and results of operations could be materially and adversely affected, in which case the trading price of our common stock could decline significantly and you could lose all or part of your investment.
References to “Pacific DataVision,” “the Company,” “we,” “us” or “our” refer to Pacific DataVision, Inc., a Delaware corporation.
Definitions: Certain definitions used throughout these Risk Factors have the meanings ascribed to them below:
“pdvConnect” means our cloud-based, suite of advanced, value-added mobile resource management solutions.
“FCC” means the Federal Communications Commission.
“PTT” means push-to-talk.
“Spectrum Assets” refers to certain licenses to spectrum in the 900 MHz spectrum band and operating equipment to be purchased by the Company from Sprint pursuant to the Sprint APA.
“Spectrum Closing” refers to the closing of the transfer of the Spectrum Assets under the Sprint APA, which occurred on September 15, 2014.
“SMR Networks” means local specialized mobile radio networks.
“JOBS Act” means the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012.
“900 MHz band” means those electromagnetic radio spectrum pairs located between 896-901 MHz (uplink frequencies) and 935-940 MHz (down link frequencies) that are licensed in the United States by the FCC.
Risks Related to Our Business
We have no operating history with respect to our proposed business, which makes it difficult to evaluate our prospects and future financial results, and our business may not be successful.
Although we were incorporated in 1997, we have had limited operations, and our business model and strategy will change significantly due to our acquisition of the Spectrum Assets. As a result, with our existing business, our ability to forecast our future operating results is limited and subject to a number of uncertainties, including our ability to plan for and model our future growth and expenses. We have encountered and expect to continue to encounter risks and uncertainties frequently experienced by new businesses in highly competitive markets. If our assumptions regarding these uncertainties are incorrect or change in reaction to changes in our markets, or if we do not manage or address these risks successfully, our results of operations could differ materially from our expectations, and our business could suffer. Any success that we may experience in the future will depend, in large part, on our ability to, among other things:
- build out and expand our network;
- expand and retain our customer base on a cost-effective basis;
- attract dealers to sell our services;
- add new customers and increase revenues from existing customers by adding users, devices and additional services;
- maintain our existing services business, which requires the continuation of our existing relationships with other wireless communications services providers;
- successfully compete in our markets;
- continue to add features and functionality to our solutions to meet customer demand;
- integrate our existing pdvConnect technologies with the PTT systems we are deploying; and
- scale our internal business operations in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
We have had net losses each year since our inception, and may not achieve or maintain profitability in the future.
We have incurred net losses each year since our inception. We may incur significant losses in the future for a number of reasons, including without limitation the risks and uncertainties described in these Risk Factors related to our new business model and strategy. Additionally, we may encounter unforeseen operating expenses, difficulties, complications, delays and other unknown factors that may result in losses in future periods. If these losses exceed our expectations or our revenue growth expectations are not met in future periods, our financial performance will be harmed.
The wireless communications industry is highly competitive, and in order for us to compete effectively we will need to gain market share.
There are currently several national wireless communications services providers and many local two-way radio operators providing two-way PTT dispatch services. Moreover, the market for PTT dispatch services is entrenched. In order for us to compete effectively we will need to demonstrate the superiority of our services and products and convert customers from existing services providers. Our efforts to convert customers from existing services providers will be made more difficult by the fact that the market for PTT dispatch services is highly fragmented, and we will need to tailor our marketing approach to many different categories of customers. If we are unable to acquire a substantial number of customers, our ability to grow our business and our operating results will suffer.
Some of our competitors are financially stronger than we are, which may limit our ability to compete based on price.
Because of their resources and, in some cases, ownership by larger companies, some of our competitors are financially stronger than we are, which may enable them to offer services to customers at prices that are below the prices at which we can offer comparable services. If we cannot compete effectively based on the price of our service offerings, our revenues and growth may be adversely affected.
Additionally, national wireless communications services providers that offer cellular phone services that do not incorporate a PTT function often provide subscribers with free or significantly discounted or subsidized handsets as an enticement to sign up for their particular suite of services. The higher cost of the handsets that we market, as compared to digital handsets that do not incorporate a similar PTT dispatch-centric, multi-function capability, may make it more difficult or less profitable for us to attract customers. Moreover, the higher cost of our handsets combined with the offering of free handsets by some wireless communications services providers will require us to absorb part of the cost of offering our handsets to new and existing customers. These increased costs for our target customers to acquire handsets for us on our network and any handset subsidy expenses we may need to absorb to offset a portion of these increased costs may reduce our growth and profitability.
If other wireless vendors or services providers improve their existing PTT dispatch services that become comparable to ours, our competitive advantage will be reduced.
One of the primary ways in which we will differentiate ourselves is through our two-way PTT services. A number of wireless equipment vendors already offer or plan to offer wireless equipment that is capable of providing PTT services or technologies that compete or will compete with our services and technology. If these PTT services or technologies are perceived to be or become, or if any such services introduced in the future are, comparable to our PTT service or technology, our competitive advantage would be reduced, which in turn could adversely affect our business.
Moreover, the largest national wireless communications services providers by revenue do not currently focus on PTT dispatch services as a primary component of their businesses. However, if that were to change, it would likely be difficult for us to compete effectively with such providers. These larger services providers have larger existing customer bases that they will be able to introduce PTT dispatch services to, have more money to spend on research and development that may enable them to create products that are qualitatively superior to ours and may have the ability to operate successfully on a smaller profit per subscriber margin due to the larger volume of subscribers they service.
If we do not keep pace with rapid technological changes, we may not be able to attract and retain customers.
We will need to be able to evolve the technology that we rely upon in supplying the suite of services that we offer in order to solve the problems of our business customers. Future technological advancements may occur quickly and may enable other wireless technologies to equal or exceed our current levels of service and render our technology obsolete. If we are unable to meet future advances in competing technologies on a timely basis, or at an acceptable cost, we may not be able to compete effectively and could lose customers to our competitors. In addition, competition among the differing wireless communications technologies could:
- further segment the user markets, which could reduce the demand for, and competitiveness of, our technology; and
- reduce the resources devoted by third party suppliers to developing or improving the technology for our systems.
If our customers do not adopt our technology or if they do not renew their services with us, our future revenue and operating results will be harmed.
In order to begin selling our services we must launch our network and build a customer base. Our strategy depends on building and maintaining a loyal customer base, because we will not have long-term contracts (like most of our local SMR system operator competitors). Because of the number of participants in the industry, we will need to work with sales and service teams locally including indirect dealer networks to obtain customers and maintain those relationships. Also, if we do not develop new solutions, features and functionality that meet our customers’ needs, we may lose customers. If our efforts to gain customers and sell our services are not effective, our business will suffer.
Given our limited operating history, we are unable to accurately predict our customer expansion or renewal rates. Our customer expansion and renewal rates may decline or fluctuate as a result of a number of factors, including the level of their satisfaction with our solutions or our customer support, customer budgets and the pricing of our solutions compared with the solutions offered by our competitors, any of which may cause our revenue to grow more slowly than expected, if at all.
If we do not enter our targeted markets quickly enough, it may not be possible for us to compete effectively.
We currently intend to deploy our products and services in 20 of the major metropolitan areas throughout the United States. In addition to containing a large number of potential customers, these markets are strategically located throughout the United States in order to provide our brand with a high degree of visibility that will help us grow and potentially expand into other markets at a later time. However, if we are not able to offer our products and services in these initial crucial markets quickly enough, other services providers may be able to deploy their services and products and sign up a large enough number of subscribers in these markets in the interim, which would make it impossible for us to enter these markets. If we are unable to enter these markets, we do not believe that we will be able to compete effectively, and our profitability and growth will be negatively affected.
We rely on the equipment and selling efforts of other parties, such as our manufacturer partners, carrier partners and indirect dealer channel, and if such parties are unable or unwilling to provide us with such equipment or selling efforts, our operations will be adversely affected.
Our wireless communication technology relies on the efforts of other parties, such as indirect channel partners to act as a sales force. We will also need to rely on other parties to provide us with technological improvements designed to expand our wireless capacity and improve our services. Accordingly, we must rely on other parties, such as our manufacturer partners, to develop handsets and equipment capable of supporting the features and services that we plan to offer to our customers. In addition to relying on other parties for technology and equipment, we rely on an indirect sales force to market our products and services to customers.
The parties that we rely upon could choose not to promote our services or may receive better incentives from our competitors. If these or other factors affecting our relationship with such parties were to result in a significant adverse change in such parties’ ability or willingness to provide handsets and related equipment and software applications, or to develop new technologies or features for us, or in such parties’ ability or willingness to do so on a timely, cost-effective basis, we may not be able to adequately service our existing subscribers or add new subscribers and may not be able to offer competitive services. Accordingly, a decision by one of these parties to discontinue manufacturing, supporting or enhancing our infrastructure and handsets or to discontinue marketing our products would have a material adverse effect on us.
The parties we rely upon to supply our wireless communications equipment are also significant suppliers of wireless communications equipment to our competitors. These other parties may elect to focus a greater amount of their financial and other resources on the development of enhanced features functionality of standards-based wireless equipment used by our competitors rather than the equipment used by us. In such an event, we might be forced to supply our customers with equipment that is either more costly or qualitatively inferior to the equipment offered by our competitors.
We expect to continue to rely principally on manufacturers and other parties to market our products and to manufacture a substantial portion of the equipment necessary to construct, enhance and maintain our network and handset equipment for at least the next several years. The failure by these other parties to perform as expected could impose significant additional costs on us.
Agreements with suppliers, may reduce our operational flexibility and may adversely affect our growth or operating results.
Suppliers will provide the infrastructure equipment and substantially all of the handsets throughout our markets under agreements that set the prices we must pay to purchase and license this equipment, as well as a structure to develop new features and make long-term improvements to our network. These agreements may reduce our operational flexibility. Our arrangements with suppliers may delay or prevent us from employing new or different technologies that perform better or are available at a lower cost because of the additional economic costs and other impediments to change generally as well as those that arise under the supplier agreements. In the event that these suppliers are unable to deliver the hardware or other equipment which are necessary for our operations, we may not be able to service our clients on a timely basis and our business and growth may be adversely affected.
The products and services utilized by us and our suppliers and service providers may infringe on intellectual property rights owned by others.
Some of our products and services use intellectual property that we own. We also purchase products from suppliers, including hardware and device suppliers and outsource services to service provides that incorporate or utilize intellectual property which we do not own. From time to time our suppliers have received, and we and our suppliers may receive in the future, assertions and claims from third parties that the products or software utilized by us or our suppliers and service providers infringe on the patents or other intellectual property rights of these third parties. These claims could require us or an infringing supplier or service provider to discontinue certain activities or to discontinue selling the relevant products and services. Even when unsuccessful, these claims can be time-consuming and costly to defend, and divert management resources. If these claims are successful, we could be forced to pay significant damages or stop selling certain products or services or stop using certain trademarks, which could adversely affect our results of operations.
If our wireless communications technology does not perform in a manner that meets customer expectations, we will be unable to attract and retain customers.
Customer acceptance of the services we offer is and will continue to be affected by technology-based differences and by the operational performance and reliability of our network as compared to the networks of our competitors. Participants within our targeted markets may, instead of switching to our Dispatch Plus services incorporating our pdvConnect mobile resource management solution, determine that their communication needs are already adequately serviced by other means of communication and continue using such other means. We may have difficulty attracting and retaining customers if we are unable to resolve quality issues related to our network as they arise or if those issues were to:
- limit our ability to expand our network coverage or capacity as currently planned; or
- place us at a competitive disadvantage to other wireless service providers in our markets.
The current economic environment has made it difficult for businesses and consumers to obtain credit, which could cause our suppliers, distributors and subscribers to have problems meeting their contractual obligations with us.
If our suppliers are unable to fulfill our orders or meet their contractual obligations with us, we may not be able to obtain the services or devices required to meet the needs of our current and future subscribers, which could cause us to lose current and potential subscribers to other carriers. If our subscribers are unable to pay their bills or potential subscribers feel they are unable to take on additional financial obligations, they may be forced to forgo our services, which could negatively affect our results of operations.
We may face pressure to reduce prices, which could adversely affect operating results.
We and our competitors may decrease prices or increase service and product offerings, resulting in declining average monthly revenue per subscriber in the wireless industry overall. Competition in pricing and service and product offerings may also adversely impact customer retention. To the extent that we continue to offer more competitive pricing packages, our average monthly revenue per subscriber may decrease, which could adversely affect our results of operations. If this happens, it may be increasingly difficult for us to remain competitive. We may encounter market pressures to:
- migrate existing customers to lower priced service offering packages;
- restructure our service offering packages to offer more value;
- reduce our service offering prices; or
- respond to particular short-term, market specific situations, such as special introductory pricing or particular new product or service offerings, in a particular market.
We have a concentration of risk related to the accounts receivable from three of our customers and failure to fully collect outstanding balances from these customers, or a combination of other customers, may adversely affect our results of operations.
As of March 31, 2014, we have balances accounts receivable balances owed to us by three customers, representing approximately 33%, 43% and 6% of accounts receivable, respectively. We maintain an allowance for doubtful accounts based on the collections history and aging of outstanding receivables, as well as for any specific instances we become aware of that may preclude us from reasonably assuring collection on outstanding balances. Determining the allowance for doubtful accounts is judgmental in nature and often involves the use of significant estimates. A determination that requires a change in our estimates could have a materially adverse effect on our results of operations. Additionally, if our customers fail to pay a significant portion of outstanding accounts receivable balances, it would have a negative impact on our results of operations and financial condition.
Government regulation could adversely affect our prospects and results of operations; the FCC and state regulatory commissions may adopt new regulations or take other actions that could adversely affect our business prospects, future growth or results of operations.
The FCC and other federal, state and local, as well as international, governmental authorities have jurisdiction over our business and could adopt regulations or take other actions that would adversely affect our business prospects or results of operations.
The licensing, construction, operation and sale of wireless telecommunications systems are regulated by the FCC and, depending on the jurisdiction, international, state and local regulatory agencies. In particular, the FCC imposes significant regulation on licensees of wireless spectrum with respect to how radio spectrum is used by licensees, the nature of the services that licensees may offer and how the services may be offered, and resolution of issues of interference between spectrum bands.
The FCC grants wireless licenses for terms of generally ten years that are subject to renewal and revocation. There is no guarantee that our licenses will be renewed. Failure to comply with FCC requirements applicable to a given license could result in revocation or non-renewal of our licenses, depending on the nature and severity of the non-compliance.
Various states are considering regulations over terms and conditions of service, including certain billing practices and consumer-related issues that may not be pre-empted by federal law. If imposed, these regulations could make it more difficult and expensive to implement national sales and marketing programs and could increase the costs of our wireless operations.
Government regulations determine how we operate, which could increase our costs and limit our growth and strategy plans.
The FCC regulates the licensing, operation, acquisition and sale of the licensed spectrum that is essential to our business. We may be subject to FCC regulations that impose obligations on wireless providers, such as federal Universal Service Fund obligations, which require communications providers to contribute to a fund that supports subsidized communications services to underserved areas and users; rules governing billing, subscriber privacy and customer proprietary network information; roaming obligations; rules that require wireless service providers to configure their networks to facilitate electronic surveillance by law enforcement officials; rules governing spam, telemarketing and truth-in-billing; and rules requiring us to offer equipment and services that are accessible to and usable by persons with disabilities, among others. If we fail to comply with applicable FCC regulations, we may be subject to sanctions, which may have a material adverse effect on our business. Future changes in regulation or legislation could impose significant additional costs on us either in the form of direct out of pocket costs or additional compliance obligations. The FCC and Congress may make additional spectrum available for communications services, which may result in the introduction of additional competitive entrants to the already crowded wireless communications marketplace.
Further, some state and local jurisdictions have adopted legislation that could affect our costs and operations in those areas. For example, some jurisdictions have adopted laws restricting or prohibiting the use of portable communications devices while driving motor vehicles, often including PTT devices. If similar laws are enacted in other jurisdictions, we may experience reduced subscriber usage and demand for our services, which could have a material adverse effect on our results of operations.
Our business could be negatively impacted by disruptions arising from causes beyond our control.
Major equipment failures, catastrophic events, power anomalies or outages, natural disasters, including severe weather, terrorist acts or breaches of network or information technology security that affect wireless networks, including transport facilities, communications switches, routers, microwave links, cell sites or other equipment or third-party owned local and long-distance networks on which we rely, could have a material adverse effect on our operations.
We may be limited in our ability to grow unless we expand network capacity and coverage and address increased demands on our business systems and processes as needed.
Our business model depends on our ability to build and grow our subscriber base. To successfully increase our number of subscribers and pursue our business plan, we must economically:
- expand the capacity and coverage of our network;
- potentially obtain additional spectrum in some or all of our markets;
- secure sufficient transmitter and receiver sites at appropriate locations to meet planned system coverage and capacity targets;
- obtain adequate quantities of base radios and other system infrastructure equipment; and
- obtain an adequate volume and mix of handsets, other user devices and related accessories to meet subscriber demand.
If we are unable to achieve increased network capacity, or there are substantial delays in doing so, we could be required to invest additional capital in our infrastructure to satisfy our network capacity needs and otherwise may not be able to successfully increase our number of subscribers.
Our operating performance and ability to retain these new customers may be adversely affected unless we are able to timely and efficiently meet the demands for our services and address any increased demands on our customer service, billing and other back-office functions. If we outsource aspects of our customer care function to third parties, we cannot be sure that this outsourcing will not heighten these risks.
Our reputation and business may be harmed and we may be subject to legal claims if there is loss, disclosure or misappropriation of or access to our, or our subscribers’, information or other breaches of our information security.
We make extensive use of online services and centralized data processing, including through third-party service providers. The secure maintenance and transmission of customer information is an important element of our operations. Our information technology and other systems that maintain and transmit customer information, including location or personal information, or those of service providers, may be compromised by a malicious third-party penetration of our network security, or that of a third-party service provider, or impacted by unauthorized intentional or inadvertent actions or inactions by our employees, or those of a third-party service provider. Cyber attacks, which include the use of malware, computer viruses and other means for disruption or unauthorized access, have increased in frequency, scope and potential harm in recent years. While, to date, we have not been subject to cyber attacks or other cyber incidents which, individually or in the aggregate, have been material to our operations or financial condition, the preventive actions we take to reduce the risk of cyber incidents and protect our information technology and networks may be insufficient to repel a major cyber attack in the future. As a result, our subscribers’ information may be lost, disclosed, accessed, used, corrupted, destroyed or taken without the subscribers’ consent.
In addition, we and third-party service providers process and maintain our proprietary business information and data related to our business-to-business customers or suppliers. Our information technology and other systems that maintain and transmit this information, or those of service providers, may also be compromised by a malicious third-party penetration of our network security or that of a third-party service provider, or impacted by unauthorized intentional or inadvertent actions or inactions by our employees or those of a third-party service provider. We also purchase equipment from third parties that could contain software defects, malware, or other means by which third parties could access our network or the information stored or transmitted on such networks or equipment. We may also face increased risks of becoming subject to cyber attacks or other cyber incidents as we expand our business model and activities to include establishing and operating our own dedicated network. As a result, our business information, or subscriber or supplier data may be lost, disclosed, accessed, used, corrupted, destroyed or taken without consent.
Any major compromise of our data or network security, failure to prevent or mitigate the loss of our services or customer information and delays in detecting any such compromise or loss could disrupt our operations, impact our reputation and subscribers’ willingness to purchase our service and subject us to additional costs and liabilities, including litigation, which could be material.
Risks Related to Our Acquisition and Use of Spectrum
Spectrum is a limited resource, and we may not be able to obtain sufficient spectrum to support our planned business operations and future growth.
Spectrum is a limited resource that is regulated in the United States by the FCC. The Spectrum Assets we purchased from include geographic SMR licenses and site-specific B/ILT licenses. We believe approximately 6 MHz of spectrum on average will be available to our Company in the top 20 markets in the United States, although we might not achieve 6 MHz of spectrum in each of the top 20 markets. We believe this non-contiguous spectrum is more than sufficient to allow us to operate a nationwide dedicated dispatch network using proven narrowband technologies. Nevertheless, we may need to acquire additional spectrum in the future as our business grows or we introduce new products or technologies. We may seek to acquire additional spectrum through negotiated purchases, in government-sponsored auctions of spectrum or otherwise. We cannot assure you, however, that we will be successful in acquiring the additional spectrum we may need to support our future growth, our future network rollout plans or our future product and technology introductions on commercially reasonable terms, or at all. Any failure to obtain the spectrum required for our current and future business plans will adversely impact our revenues and our future growth potential.
Any efforts we pursue to increase the value of our spectrum may not be successful.
We hold licenses covering approximately 60% of the licensed frequencies in the 900 MHz band. While this should provide us with sufficient spectrum to allow us to operate a nationwide dedicated dispatch network using proven narrowband technologies, we believe that future demands for high speed data and video services, even in the case of PTT users, should provide an impetus for change to broadband technologies. As a result, we believe that we will have an opportunity in the future to participate in a request to the FCC to repurpose all or any portion of the 900 MHz band from narrowband to broadband, possibly leading to 3×3 MHz broadband opportunities that we could pursue using our spectrum. Nevertheless, to pursue this strategy, we will be required to make additional spectrum purchases and to reconfigure our non-contiguous spectrum to achieve a contiguous nationwide 3×3 MHz position. Our ability to successfully implement this strategy may take more time and be more expensive than we currently anticipate, and we ultimately may not be able to complete the necessary spectrum acquisitions and reconfiguration. In addition, even if we can obtain a contiguous nationwide 3×3 MHz position, we expect FCC consideration of any repurposing request to take a significant amount of time, and there is no assurance that the FCC will approve the repurposing of all or any portion of the 900 MHz band (including the licenses that we acquired as part of the Spectrum Assets). We also anticipate that FCC approval may be subject to legal objections from other licensees and users of licensed spectrum in the 900 MHz band not held by us. As a result, there is no assurance that we will ultimately be successful in obtaining the necessary approvals required to repurpose a portion of the 900 MHz spectrum from narrowband to broadband.
Risks Related to Our Organization and Structure
We depend on key personnel.
Our success depends to a significant degree upon the contributions of key personnel. We do not currently have long-term employment agreements with our key personnel. In addition, there is no guarantee that these executives will remain employed with us. If any of our key personnel were to cease employment with us, our operating results could suffer. Further, the process of attracting and retaining suitable replacements for key personnel whose services we may lose would result in transition costs and would divert the attention of other members of our senior management from our existing operations. The loss of services from key personnel or a limitation in their availability could materially and adversely impact our business, prospects, liquidity, financial condition and results of operations. Further, such a loss could be negatively perceived in the capital markets. We have not obtained and do not expect to obtain key man life insurance that would provide us with proceeds in the event of death or disability of any of our key personnel.
We may not be able to successfully operate our business.
We are targeting a very specific niche of the existing market for wireless communications services. The subset of the market within which we seek to focus our services may not prove to be as lucrative as we currently estimate. Moreover, we cannot assure you that our past experience will be sufficient to enable us to operate our business successfully or implement our operating policies and business strategies. Furthermore, we may not be able to generate sufficient operating cash flows to pay our operating expenses or service our indebtedness. You should not rely upon the past performance of our management team, as past performance may not be indicative of our future results.
Termination of the employment agreements with the members of our management team could be costly and prevent a change in control of our Company.
The employment agreements we have in place with our key personnel, in their capacities as officers, each provide that if the officer’s employment with us terminates under certain circumstances, we may be required to pay them significant amounts of severance compensation, thereby making it costly to terminate such officer’s employment. Furthermore, these provisions could delay or prevent a transaction or a change in control of our Company that might involve a premium paid for shares of our common stock or otherwise be in the best interests of our stockholders, which could adversely affect the market price of our common stock.
We may change our operational policies and business and growth strategies without stockholder consent, which may subject us to different and more significant risks in the future.
Our board of directors determines our operational policies and business and growth strategies. Our board of directors may make changes to, or approve transactions that deviate from, those policies, guidelines and strategies without a vote of, or notice to, our stockholders. This could result in us conducting operational matters, making investments or pursuing different business or growth strategies than those currently announced. Under any of these circumstances, we may expose ourselves to different and more significant risks in the future, which could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, liquidity, financial condition and results of operations.
If we fail to implement and maintain an effective system of internal controls, we may not be able to accurately determine our financial results or prevent fraud. As a result, our stockholders could lose confidence in our financial results, which could materially and adversely affect us.
Effective internal controls are necessary for us to provide reliable financial reports and effectively prevent fraud. We may in the future discover areas of our internal controls that need improvement. We have not been subject to public reporting requirements and have not been required to assess our internal controls. We cannot be certain that we will be successful in implementing or maintaining adequate internal control over our financial reporting and financial processes. Furthermore, as we grow our business, our internal controls will become more complex, and we will require significantly more resources to ensure our internal controls remain effective. Additionally, the existence of any material weakness or significant deficiency would require management to devote significant time and incur significant expense to remediate any such material weaknesses or significant deficiencies and management may not be able to remediate any such material weaknesses or significant deficiencies in a timely manner. The existence of any material weakness in our internal control over financial reporting could also result in errors in our financial statements that could require us to restate our financial statements, cause us to fail to meet our reporting obligations and cause stockholders to lose confidence in our reported financial information, all of which could materially and adversely affect us.
Changes in accounting rules, assumptions and/or judgments could materially and adversely affect us.
Accounting rules and interpretations for certain aspects of our operations are highly complex and involve significant assumptions and judgment. These complexities could lead to a delay in the preparation and dissemination of our financial statements. Furthermore, changes in accounting rules and interpretations or in our accounting assumptions and/or judgments, such as asset impairments, could significantly impact our financial statements. In some cases, we could be required to apply a new or revised standard retroactively, resulting in restating prior period financial statements. Any of these circumstances could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, liquidity, financial condition and results of operations.
Risks Related to an Investment in Our Common Stock
There is currently no public market for our common stock, which could result in investors in our common stock being unable to liquidate their investments. An active, liquid market for our common stock may never develop or be sustained, which would materially and adversely affect the market price of our common stock.
There is no established public market for our common stock. We intend to seek to have our common stock listed on a national stock exchange. If we don’t meet all listing requirements, we will not be able to list our common stock on a national stock exchange and will apply to have our common stock quoted on the OTCBB. If we are unable to list our common stock on a national stock exchange, an active, liquid trading market for our common stock may not develop or be sustained, which likely would materially and adversely affect the market price of our common stock. Stockholders also may not be able to sell their shares of our common stock at the volume, prices and times desired.
We may not be accepted for listing or inclusion on a national stock exchange.
There is no assurance that our application to be listed on a national stock exchange will be approved. Each exchange and market has initial listing criteria, including criteria related to minimum bid price, public float, market makers, minimum numbers of round lot holders and board independence requirements that we can give no assurance we will meet. Our inability to list or include our common stock on a national stock exchange could affect the ability of our stockholders to sell their shares of our common stock and, consequently, could adversely affect the value of such shares. In such case, our stockholders would find it more difficult to dispose of, or to obtain accurate quotations as to the market value of, our common stock. In addition, we would have more difficulty attracting the attention of market analysts to cover us in their research. If we are unsuccessful, holders of shares of our common stock may not be able to sell their shares of our common stock at or near their original acquisition price, or at any price.
We can give no assurances as to the development of liquidity or any trading market for our common stock. Holders of shares of our common stock may not be able to resell their shares of our common stock at or near their original acquisition price, or at any price.
Our common stock prices may be volatile which could cause the value of an investment in our common stock to decline.
Once our common stock becomes publicly traded and an active trading market develops for our common stock, the market price of our common stock may be highly volatile and subject to wide fluctuations. Our financial performance, government regulatory action, tax laws, interest rates and market conditions in general could have a significant impact on the future market price of our common stock.
Some of the factors that could negatively affect or result in fluctuations in the market price of our common stock include:
- actual or anticipated variations in our quarterly operating results;
- changes in market valuations of similar companies;
- adverse market reaction to the level of our indebtedness;
- additions or departures of key personnel;
- actions by stockholders;
- speculation in the press or investment community;
- general market, economic and political conditions, including an economic slowdown or dislocation in the global credit markets;
- our operating performance and the performance of other similar companies;
- changes in accounting principles; and
- passage of legislation or other regulatory developments that adversely affect us or our industry.
We are an “emerging growth company,” and the reduced disclosure requirements applicable to emerging growth companies may make our common stock less attractive to investors.
We are an “emerging growth company,” as defined in the JOBS Act, and may remain an emerging growth company for up to five years. For so long as we remain an emerging growth company, we are permitted and intend to rely on exemptions from certain disclosure requirements that are applicable to other public companies that are not emerging growth companies. These exemptions include:
- Being permitted to provide only two years of audited financial statements, in addition to any required unaudited interim financial statements, with correspondingly reduced “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” disclosure;
- Not being required to comply with the auditor attestation requirements in the assessment of our internal control over financial reporting;
- Not being required to comply with any requirement that may be adopted by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board regarding mandatory audit firm rotation or a supplement to the auditor’s report providing additional information about the audit and the financial statements;
- Reduced disclosure obligations regarding executive compensation; and
- Exemptions from the requirements of holding a nonbinding advisory vote on executive compensation and stockholder approval of any golden parachute payments not previously approved.
We have taken advantage of reduced reporting burdens authorized by the JOBS Act. We cannot predict whether investors will find our common stock less attractive if we rely on these exemptions. If some investors find our common stock less attractive as a result, there may be a less active trading market for our common stock and our stock price may be more volatile.
In addition, the JOBS Act also provides that an emerging growth company can take advantage of an extended transition period for complying with new or revised accounting standards. This allows an emerging growth company to delay the adoption of certain accounting standards until those standards would otherwise apply to private companies. Nevertheless, we have elected not to avail ourselves of this extended transition period and, as a result, we will adopt new or revised accounting standards on the relevant dates on which adoption of such standards is required for other public companies.
We do not intend to pay dividends on our common stock for the foreseeable future.
We currently intend to retain our future earnings, if any, to finance the development and expansion of our business and, therefore, do not intend to pay cash dividends on our common stock for the foreseeable future. Any future determination to pay dividends will be at the discretion of our board of directors and will depend on our financial condition, results of operations, capital requirements, restrictions contained in any financing instruments and such other factors as our board of directors deems relevant in its discretion. Accordingly, you may need to sell your shares of our common stock to realize a return on your investment, and you may not be able to sell your shares at or above the price you paid for them.
Certain anti-takeover defenses and applicable law may limit the ability of a third party to acquire control of us.
Certain provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws could discourage, delay, or prevent a merger, acquisition or other change of control that stockholders may consider favorable, including transactions in which you might otherwise receive a premium for your shares. These provisions also could limit the price that investors might be willing to pay in the future for our common stock, thereby depressing the market price of our common stock. These provisions, among other things:
- allow the authorized number of directors to be changed only by resolution of our board of directors;
- authorize our board of directors to issue, without stockholder approval, preferred stock, the rights of which will be determined at the discretion of the board of directors and that, if issued, could operate as a “poison pill” to dilute the stock ownership of a potential hostile acquirer to prevent an acquisition that our board of directors does not approve;
- establish advance notice requirements for stockholder nominations to our board of directors or for stockholder proposals that can be acted on at stockholder meetings; and
- limit who may call a stockholders meeting.
Claims for indemnification by our directors and officers may reduce our available funds to satisfy successful third-party claims against us and may reduce the amount of money available to us.
Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and amended and restated bylaws provide that we will indemnify our directors and officers, in each case to the fullest extent permitted by Delaware law. In addition, as permitted by Section 145 of the Delaware General Corporation Law, our amended and restated bylaws and our indemnification agreements that we have entered into with our directors and officers provide that:
- We will indemnify our directors and officers for serving us in those capacities or for serving other business enterprises at our request, to the fullest extent permitted by Delaware law. Delaware law provides that a corporation may indemnify such person if such person acted in good faith and in a manner such person reasonably believed to be in or not opposed to the best interests of the registrant and, with respect to any criminal proceeding, had no reasonable cause to believe such person’s conduct was unlawful.
- We may, in our discretion, indemnify employees and agents in those circumstances where indemnification is permitted by applicable law.
- We are required to advance expenses, as incurred, to our directors and officers in connection with defending a proceeding, except that such directors or officers shall undertake to repay such advances if it is ultimately determined that such person is not entitled to indemnification.
- We will not be obligated pursuant to our amended and restated bylaws to indemnify a person with respect to proceedings initiated by that person against us or our other indemnitees, except with respect to proceedings authorized by our board of directors or brought to enforce a right to indemnification.
- The rights conferred in our amended and restated bylaws are not exclusive, and we are authorized to enter into indemnification agreements with our directors, officers, employees and agents and to obtain insurance to indemnify such persons.
- We may not retroactively amend our bylaw provisions to reduce our indemnification obligations to directors, officers, employees and agents.