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Matt Franker has nearly twenty years of experience advising public and private companies, underwriters, and boards of directors in capital markets offerings, securities disclosure and compliance, corporate governance and ESG matters, mergers and acquisitions, and general corporate issues. Matt has significant experience representing companies from a broad range of industries, including life sciences, financial services, manufacturing, energy, consumer products, and telecommunications. Matt, a former SEC staff member, also has extensive experience advising clients on SEC rulemakings and regulatory proceedings.

Matt has been recognized in Legal 500 for his work on capital markets transactions, and his capital markets experience includes advising companies and underwriters on registered and exempt offerings of common and preferred equity securities and investment grade, high-yield and convertible debt securities, exchange offers, debt tender offers, and consent solicitations. Matt has an extensive securities advisory practice focused on assisting public companies in a wide variety of disclosure, corporate governance, and compliance matters.

Prior to joining Covington, Matt served as an attorney-adviser with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's Division of Corporation Finance. While at the SEC, he worked on a wide variety of transactional and securities compliance matters, with an emphasis on the manufacturing, construction, and financial services industries. His experience at the SEC focused on IPOs, secondary offerings, mergers and acquisitions, exchange offers, going-private transactions, PIPEs and private equity financings and evaluating no-action requests to exclude shareholder proposals under Exchange Act Rule 14a-8.

On October 26, 2022, the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) adopted a long-awaited rule[1] that will require listed companies to adopt and publicly file so-called “clawback” policies to recover erroneously awarded incentive-based compensation following accounting restatements. Companies with securities listed on national securities exchanges, including NYSE and Nasdaq, will be required to implement such policies within 60 days of the effective date of new listing standards, which the exchanges must adopt within 12 months of the new rule’s publication in the Federal Register. Companies who fail to comply will be subject to delisting.

The most significant deviation from the SEC’s initial proposal of the clawback rule in 2015 is that Rule 10D-1 will require companies to conduct a clawback analysis not only for “Big R” accounting restatements, which must be disclosed under Item 4.02(a) of Form 8-K, but also for “little r” accounting restatements, which involve the correction of errors in prior period financial statements when those financial statements are included in a current period filing.

Clawback Policy Requirements

Under the new rule, a listed company’s clawback policy must require the company to recover, reasonably promptly, erroneously awarded incentive-based compensation from persons who served as an executive officer at any time during the performance period for such incentive-based compensation and who received such compensation during the three fiscal years preceding the date on which the company is required to prepare an accounting restatement. The compensation to be recovered is the amount in excess of what would have been paid based on the restated results.

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