JOBS Act Changes the Landscape for Financing Emerging Companies

Extensive, and somewhat controversial, changes were made in the regulatory framework for financing of emerging growth companies when the President signed the ‘‘Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act’’ (“JOBS Act”) into law on April 5, 2012 as Public Law 112-106.  Many of the provisions in the JOBS Act went into effect immediately upon signing; however, other provisions await rulemaking by the Securities and Exchange Commission that must be completed on a schedule specified in the Act and some rules may not be finalized until 2013.  The JOBS Act includes changes to both the Securities Act and the Exchange Act including easing requirements for going and being public, permitting “general solicitation” of investors in Rule 506 and 144A offerings under certain conditions, creating a new “crowdfunding” procedure to allow issuers to raise up to $1,000,000 if extensive disclosure and reporting obligations are satisfied, creating a new exemption that parallels existing Regulation A that would facilitate raising up to $50,000,000 in capital and increasing the maximum number of shareholders for private companies to 2,000.  Click here for our report on the relevant provisions of the JOBS Act.  While the JOBS Act received bipartisan support and has been heralded by many in the political and business communities as strong and important medicine for an ailing economy that will foster business growth and job creation, there are many others who have expressed concerns about the scope of the changes and the possibility that the Act will substantially erode many of the investor protections that have been implemented over the last decade.  In particular, critics worry that granting exemptions from the rigorous corporate governance and accounting standards put in place after the scandals at Enron and WorldCom and the more recent global financial crisis will lead to an increase in securities fraud at the expenses of large numbers of small investors. 

15 thoughts on “JOBS Act Changes the Landscape for Financing Emerging Companies

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