News & Analysis as of

Whole Foods’ Proposal for Proxy Access Is Sufficient to Exclude Shareholder Proposal

In a closely watched development, the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance Staff (Staff) granted no-action relief in early December to Whole Foods Market, Inc. (Whole Foods, or the Company) in response to the Company’s...more

Recent Developments Relating to Rights to Exclude Shareholder Proposals from Proxy Statements

A recent court decision and no-action letter have brought to light new issues surrounding issuer requests for Securities and Exchange Commission no-action relief with respect to the ability to exclude shareholder proposals...more

In Texas Can Some Shares Be More Equal Than Others?

Although Rome before Augustus is often described as a republic, it was in many respects ruled by the wealthy who jealously guarded their power. So it was with Rome’s comitia centuriata. In theory, this was an assembly of...more

Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest - Volume IX, Issue 48

In this issue: - Recent Developments Relating to Rights to Exclude Shareholder Proposals from Proxy Statements - SEC Approves MSRB Best Execution Rule - SEC Sanctions Operator of Unregistered Virtual...more

On the Third Day of Privacy, the Shareholders Gave to Me……

…….Shareholder Proposals on Cybersecurity and Privacy: Another Country Heard From As the holiday season slips into the rear view mirror, another season looms large for public companies —- proxy season. Adding to the...more

NYC Pension Fund Submits 75 Proxy Access Proposals

New York City Comptroller Scott M. Stringer, on behalf of the $160 billion New York City Pension Funds, has submitted proxy access shareowner proposals to 75 companies. The proposals request a bylaw to give shareowners who...more

In Case You Missed It - Interesting Items for Corporate Counsel - November 2014

1.As the year moves to a close, expect lots of chatter about the upcoming 2015 proxy season. Including from us beginning right now. 2.Almost certainly because good corporate governance practices just change so darn...more

Anticipating Shareholder Proposals During the 2015 Proxy Season

As companies begin to prepare for the 2015 proxy season, it will be important to anticipate the types of shareholder proposals they should expect so that they can develop a more meaningful response. This can be accomplished...more

Blog: Corp Fin Tallies Shareholder Proposal No-Action Requests And Responses

As reported by Bloomberg, director of Corp Fin Keith Higgins, speaking at the ABA meeting of the Business Law section in Chicago, provided Corp Fin’s tally of no-action requests and responses in connection with shareholder...more

Lead Director Network: Viewpoints: Proxy trends and advisory firm policy

Lead Director Network (LDN) and Compensation Committee Leadership Network (CCLN) members met jointly on July 17, 2014 to discuss proxy advisory firm policy and trends from the 2014 proxy season. They were joined for part of...more

Vote-Counting Standards: A Recipe for Confusion?

Shareholder voting standards was a hot topic this proxy season and will likely continue to be of significant interest next proxy season and in subsequent years. This proxy season, shareholders submitted various proposals...more

Boardroom Perspectives: Three Practical Steps to Stay Ahead of Shareholder Activism

Activist investors continue to shape corporate governance. Last year saw more than 300 activist proxy campaigns, proposals and contests. Activism-focused funds manage over $100 billion in assets. In this climate, no...more

Proxy Season: Enhanced Confidential Voting Shareholder Proposals

Fueled by the controversy during the 2013 proxy season over access to interim vote tallies, “enhanced confidential voting” proposals have been submitted to over a dozen high profile companies for the 2014 proxy season,...more

The Proxy Season Field Guide - Fourth Edition

In This Issue: Executive Summary; Chapter 1 - The Legislative And Regulatory Developments Shaping The Proxy Season; Chapter 2 Say-On-Pay; Chapter 3 Key Disclosure Considerations For Proxy Statements And Annual Reports;...more

Investor Voice May Rue Adoption Of Single Voting Standard

In yesterday’s post, I discussed why the Council of Institutional Investor’s blanket policy eschewing the counting of abstentions may be neither good nor legal. CII, however, isn’t the only proponent of not counting...more

What’s New for the 2014 Proxy Season

Unlike in past years, there are no new disclosure requirements which need to be reflected in this year’s proxy statement; however, with ongoing shareholder activism and the desire of companies to communicate effectively with...more

The Latest in Bylaws–No Director Third-Party Compensation

Every now and then a bylaw amendment gains favor in corporate America. A few brave companies act as early adopters. Then, if the concept has merit and nothing bad happens, other companies follow suit until it becomes...more

Corporate Communicator - Winter 2014

2014 ANNUAL MEETING SEASON - Dear clients and friends, We present to you our traditional year-end issue of Snell & Wilmer’s Corporate Communicator to help you prepare for the upcoming annual report and proxy...more

Preparing for the 2014 Proxy Season - Process and Expectations

Annual Meeting Timeline: - Stockholder Proposals: ..Generally 120 days before the date on which the previous year’s proxy materials were mailed - Determine Proposal...more

“Short Slate” Rules: A Recap

“Short slate” proxy contests (i.e., contests where a dissident is soliciting proxies in support of nominees that, if elected, would constitute a minority of the board of directors) are expected to continue to be popular...more

Skadden's 2013 Insights: Governance

Say-on-pay has contributed to an environment where shareholder engagement is an increasingly critical component of corporate governance. In this section, we take a broad look at the corporate governance landscape to...more

Technical Change by Broadridge May Impact Retail Voting at Upcoming Annual Meetings

Most public companies use Broadridge for shareholder voting tasks related to their annual meetings. Due to a new interpretive position being taken by the SEC, Broadridge recently informed its clients of a technical change in...more

2013 U.S. Proxy Voting Policies and Procedures FAQ (Excluding Compensation-Related Questions)

The following issues are among those addressed in ISS' non-compensation-related FAQs... ...more

Considerations for the 2013 Form 10-K and Annual Proxy Season

The upcoming 2013 proxy season will likely be impacted by new policies issued by proxy advisers, as well as shareholder activists taking advantage of previously adopted rules, rather than by recent legislative or rulemaking...more

Reviewing the 2012 Proxy Season and Preparing for 2013

The 2012 proxy season will likely be remembered as an evolutionary, rather than revolutionary, year at the corporate ballot box. Many of the trends seen in 2011—the first year of mandatory say-on-pay—continued in 2012, with...more

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