Garrett A. DeVries

Garrett A. DeVries

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

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SEC Proposes Amendments to Update and Simplify Certain Disclosure Requirements

On July 13, 2016, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed amendments designed to update and simplify certain disclosure requirements that may have become redundant, duplicative, overlapping, outdated or...more

7/26/2016 - Comment Period Disclosure Requirements GAAP IFRS Proposed Amendments Regulation S-K Regulation S-X SEC

SEC Adopts New Rules Requiring Disclosure of Resource Extraction Payments

On June 27, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) adopted new rules requiring certain producers of oil, natural gas and minerals to publicly disclose information regarding payments to the U.S. federal government,...more

7/13/2016 - Anti-Corruption Compliance Corporate Counsel Disclosure Requirements Dodd-Frank Facilitation Payments Foreign Entities Form SD New Regulations Oil & Gas Popular Resource Extraction SEC

SEC Proposes Changes to Smaller Reporting Company Definition

On June 27, 2016, the SEC Staff proposed changes to the definition of “smaller reporting company” to expand the number of registrants that would qualify as smaller reporting companies (SRC). The term “smaller reporting...more

7/1/2016 - Capital Formation Proposed Amendments Regulation S-K SEC Smaller Reporting Companies Stock Float

SEC approves final rules implementing JOBS Act and FAST Act

On May 3, 2016, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”) released final rules1 implementing Titles V and VI of the JOBS Act and Section 85001 of the FAST Act, which together adjusted certain threshold for...more

5/13/2016 - Bank Holding Company Final Rules Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) JOBS Act Registration Requirement SEC

The SEC Speaks in 2016: Division of Corporation Finance Panel

Senior members of the Division of Corporation Finance (“Corp Fin”) of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) gathered with two former SEC commissioners at the Practising Law Institute’s annual “SEC Speaks”...more

3/23/2016 - Administrative Interpretation Crowdfunding Dodd-Frank Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) Professional Conferences Proxy Season Rulemaking Process SEC

Second Circuit Upholds Sanofi Dismissal Despite Omnicare

In its first published opinion applying the Supreme Court’s landmark ruling in Omnicare, Inc. v. Laborers District Council Construction Industry Pension Fund, 135 S. Ct. 1318 (2015), the 2nd Circuit has offered relief to...more

3/11/2016 - Corporate Counsel Material Misstatements Omnicare v Laborers District Council Pharmaceutical Industry Popular Registration Statement SCOTUS Securities Exchange Act

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Proxy Access

Proxy Access - 2015 was a turning point for shareholder proposals seeking to implement proxy access, which gives certain shareholders the ability to nominate directors and include those nominees in a company’s proxy...more

2/2/2016 - CalPERS CalSTRS Institutional Investors Proxy Access Rule 14a-8(i)(9) Shareholder Proposals TIAA CREF Vanguard

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Executive Compensation

Executive and Director Compensation - Perennially in the spotlight, executive compensation will continue to be a hot topic for directors in 2016. But this year, due to the SEC’s active rulemaking in 2015, directors will...more

1/26/2016 - Board of Directors Corporate Governance Dodd-Frank Executive Compensation SEC

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Audit Committees

Audit Committees - Averaging 8.8 meetings a year, audit continues to be the most time-consuming committee.i Audit committees are burdened not only with overseeing a company’s risks, but also a host of other...more

1/18/2016 - Audit Committee Board of Directors Corporate Governance IRS SEC

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Risk Management

Risk Management - Risk management goes hand in hand with strategic planning — it is impossible to make informed decisions about a company’s strategic direction without a comprehensive understanding of the risks involved....more

1/15/2016 - Board of Directors Corporate Governance Risk Management

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity - Nearly 90 percent of CEOs worry that cyber threats could adversely impact growth prospects, up from nearly 70 percent the previous year. Yet, in a recent survey, nearly 80 percent of the more than 1,000...more

1/15/2016 - Board of Directors Corporate Governance Cybersecurity Popular Risk Management

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: M&A Developments

M&A Developments - M&A activity has been robust in 2015 and is on track for another record year. According to Thomson Reuters, global M&A activity exceeded $3.2 trillion, with almost 32,000 deals during the first three...more

1/15/2016 - Acquisitions Board of Directors Corporate Governance Mergers

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Board Composition and Succession Planning

Board Composition and Succession Planning - Boards have to look at their composition and make an honest assessment of whether they collectively have the necessary experience and expertise to oversee the new opportunities...more

1/15/2016 - Board of Directors Corporate Governance Succession Planning

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Social Media

Social Media - Companies that ignore the significant influence that social media has on existing and potential customers, employees and investors do so at their own peril. Last quarter, Facebook reported daily active...more

1/15/2016 - Board of Directors Corporate Governance Facebook Online Reputation Reputation Management Social Media Twitter

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016 U.S. public companies face a host of challenges as they enter 2016. Here is our annual list of hot topics for the boardroom in the coming year... Please see full Alert below for more...more

12/31/2015 - Audit Committee Board of Directors Corporate Governance Cybersecurity Shareholder Activism

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Shareholder Activism

Shareholder Activism - Shareholder activism and “suggestivism” continue to gain traction. With the success that activists have experienced throughout 2015, coupled with significant new money being allocated to activist...more

12/23/2015 - Audit Committee Board of Directors Corporate Governance Cybersecurity Proxy Access Shareholder Activism Strategic Planning

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2016: Strategic Planning Considerations

Strategic Planning Considerations - Strategic planning continues to be a high priority for directors and one to which they want to devote more time.i Figuring out where the company wants to — and where it should want to...more

12/18/2015 - Climate Change Corporate Governance Corporate Social Responsibility Oil & Gas Strategic Planning

JOBS Act 2.0 – New FAST Act Legislation Signed into Law to Facilitate Capital Formation

On December 4, 2015, President Obama signed into law the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (the “FAST Act”). While the legislation is aimed at providing long-term funding certainty for surface transportation, it...more

12/9/2015 - Capital Formation Disclosure Requirements Emerging Growth Companies Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act) Holding Companies JOBS Act Regulation S-K

ISS and Glass Lewis Update their Proxy Voting Guidelines for 2016 Proxy Season

Proxy advisory firms Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) and Glass Lewis each have released updates to their policies that outline how they will form recommendations to shareholders on how they should vote on governance,...more

12/2/2015 - Corporate Governance Glass Lewis ISS Proxy Season Proxy Voting Guidelines Publicly-Traded Companies Shareholder Proposals

2015 Changes to Delaware Law Go into Effect

Amendments to the DGCL - Several significant amendments to the Delaware General Corporation Law (DGCL) were signed into law on June 24, 2015, and will go into effect on August 1, 2015. Most significantly, these...more

7/30/2015 - Amended Legislation Delaware General Corporation Law Fee-Shifting Forum Selection Power of Attorney Voting Rights

Going from A to A+: SEC Approves Amendments to Regulation A

On March 25, 2015, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission unanimously adopted final rules to amend Regulation A, as mandated by Title IV of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act). Whereas the existing...more

4/14/2015 - Blue Sky Laws Final Rules JOBS Act Public Offerings Regulation A SEC Securities Act of 1933 Small Offering Exemptions

High Court Announces New Standard for Opinion Statements

The U.S. Supreme Court found middle ground in Omnicare this week, holding that issuers’ statements of opinion issued in registration statements can be the basis for liability under Section 11 if either the speaker does not...more

3/30/2015 - Material Misstatements Omnicare Omnicare v Laborers District Council Registration Statement SCOTUS Section 11 Securities Act of 1933

Top 10 Topics for Directors in 2015: Explore New Trends in Reducing Corporate Health Care Costs

The increasing cost of healthcare is a significant concern for companies that provide health care benefits to their employees. With certain key provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, more commonly known...more

2/4/2015 - Affordable Care Act Board of Directors Corporate Management Corporate Officers Employee Benefits Employer Group Health Plans Employer Mandates Health Insurance Strategic Planning Wellness Programs

SEC Shortens Tender Offer Period for Issuers of Nonconvertible Debt

On January 23, 2015, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Staff issued a no-action letter that would allow issuers to conduct tender offers for their nonconvertible debt securities in a period of only five business...more

2/3/2015 - Deadlines No-Action Letters Non-Convertible Debt Securities SEC Tender Offers

SEC’s Record Whistleblower Award: Context and Key Take-Aways

On September 22, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced the highest award to date in its whistleblower bounty program: an amount estimated to be between $30–35 million to be paid to a foreign national...more

10/10/2014

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