Preparing for an A+ grade: Protect yourself

Don’t fool yourself.  While an offering under Regulation A+ is not an IPO on a stock exchange or full registration under the Securities Act, it is a big deal.  Your company is preparing for a public offering of securities and will be taking on investors with whom you do not have any previous relationship.  Those investors may have different ideas about the future of your company than you do and may demonstrate those ideas in the form of a lawsuit.  That said, if Regulation A+ is still right for your company, you can help to protect, or maybe mitigate or reduce that risk.

The place to start is insurance.  There are a variety of insurance products out there to help protect your company —e.g., general liability insurance, property insurance, business interruption insurance, key person life insurance, etc. However the insurance that is most important for mitigating the risks that come with taking on public investors is Directors & Officers Insurance, commonly referred to as “D&O” Insurance.

Essentially, any lawsuit brought by an investor will be against the management of the company.  However, the investor is looking for a payout from the company itself.  Even the most well run companies face investor lawsuits because no matter what is disclosed to the investor up front, investors have a way of forgetting those disclosures when they believe the company could have performed better.

However, insurance is not free.  There are premiums that must be paid and underwriters to convince that your company is not a risky proposition.  This is where a CrowdCheck due diligence report accompanying CrowdCheck’s full Regulation A+ service package, or on a standalone basis can be of help to you.  CrowdCheck due diligence covers the objectively verifiable history of a company.  This includes a review of the corporate governance and documentation of the major actions of the company.

Due diligence is an affirmative defense to any claim of securities fraud and put the company in a better position to fight any investor claim that the company did not perform as it should have.  As such, due diligence procedures, along with sound management, may lead to better terms for any D&O insurance policy that the company is seeking.

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