Related Party Transactions Policy
A “Related Party Transaction” is any transaction directly or indirectly involving any Related Party that would need to be disclosed under Item 404(a) of the Securities and Exchange Commission’s Regulation S-K. Under Item 404(a), the Company is required to disclose any transaction occurring since the beginning of the registrant’s last completed fiscal year, or any currently proposed transaction, involving the Company where the amount involved exceeds $120,000, and in which any Related Party had or will have a direct or indirect material interest. “Related Party Transaction” also includes any material amendment or modification to an existing Related Party Transaction.
“Related Party” means any of the following:
- a director (which term when used herein includes any director nominee),
- an executive officer (which term when used herein includes any member of “management” as defined by ASC 850),
- a person known by the Company to be a shareholder who owns any securities with respect to which he or she, directly or indirectly, has sole or shared (i) voting power and/or (ii) investment power, in excess of 5% of any class of the Company’s securities, or
- a person known by the Company to be an immediate family member of any of the foregoing.
“Immediate family member” means a child, stepchild, parent, stepparent, spouse, sibling, motherin-law, father in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, brother-in-law, or sister-in-law of such director, executive officer, nominee for director or beneficial owner; any other family member who exercises control or significant influence over, or who might be controlled or significantly influenced by, such director, executive officer, nominee for director or beneficial owner because of the family relationship; and any person (other than a tenant or employee) sharing the household of such director, executive officer, nominee for director or beneficial owner.
Prior to entering into a Related Party Transaction, the Committee shall review the material facts of the Related Party Transaction and either approve or disapprove of the entry into the Related Party Transaction, subject to the exceptions described below. If advance Committee approval of a Related Party Transaction is not feasible, then the Related Party Transaction shall be considered and ratified (if the Committee determines it to be appropriate) at the Committee’s next regularly scheduled meeting. In determining whether to approve or ratify a Related Party Transaction, the Committee will take into account factors it deems appropriate, including, but not limited to:
- the Related Party’s direct or indirect interest in the Related Party Transaction;
- the approximate dollar value of the amount involved in the Related Party Transaction;
- the approximate dollar value of the amount of the Related Party’s direct or indirectinterest in the transaction without regard to the amount of any profit or loss;
- whether the transaction was undertaken in the ordinary course of business of the Company;
- whether the transaction with the Related Party is proposed to be, or was enteredinto on terms no less favorable to the Company than terms that could have been reached with an unrelated third party;
- whether any alternative transactions or sources for comparable services or products are available;
- the purpose of, and the potential benefits, or potential risks or costs, to the Company of, the Related Party Transaction;
- whether the Related Party Transaction is in the best interests of the Company;
- required public disclosure, if any;
- whether the Related Party Transaction presents an improper conflict of interest for any comScore officer or director;
- the impact on a director’s independence in the event the Related Party is a director,an immediate family member of a director or an entity in which a director is a partner, shareholder or executive officer; and
- any other information regarding the Related Party Transaction or the Related Party in the context of the proposed transaction that would be material to investors in light of the circumstances of the particular transaction.
The Committee has reviewed the Related Party Transactions described below and determined that each of the Related Party Transactions described therein shall be deemed to be pre-approved or ratified (as applicable) by the Committee under the terms of this Policy. In connection with each regularly scheduled meeting of the Committee, a summary of each new Related Party Transaction deemed pre-approved as described below shall be provided to the Committee for its review.
No director shall participate in any discussion or approval of a Related Party Transaction for which he or she is a Related Party, except that the director shall provide all material information concerning the Related Party Transaction to the Committee.
Approval of a Related Party Transaction shall be obtained through approval by a majority of the Audit Committee’s members, none of whom is a Related Party in regard to the Related Party Transaction under consideration, except that, if the transaction with the Related Party is proposed to be, or was, entered into on terms less favorable to the Company than terms that could have been reached with an unrelated third party, approval of the Related Party Transaction shall be obtained by unanimous approval of the disinterested members of the Board.
A Related Party Transaction shall not be approved if such Related Party Transaction (i) would render a director no longer independent and (ii) would cause less than a majority of the Board to meet the Company’s director independence requirements.
If a Related Party Transaction will be ongoing, the Committee may establish guidelines for the Company’s management team to follow in its ongoing dealings with the Related Party. Thereafter, the Committee, on at least an annual basis, should review and assess ongoing relationships with the Related Party to confirm that they are in compliance with the Committee’s guidelines and that the Related Party Transaction remains appropriate. In addition, the Committee should review and assess, on at least a quarterly basis, any transactions that require disclosure under ASC 850 but that do not constitute Related-Party Transactions under this Policy.
The Committee has reviewed the types of Related Party Transactions described below and determined that each of the following shall be deemed to be pre-approved by the Committee, even if the aggregate amount involved will exceed $120,000, unless otherwise specifically determined by the Committee.
- Employment of executive officers. Any employment by the Company of an executive officer of the Company or any of its subsidiaries if the related compensation is approved (or recommended to the Board of Directors for approval) by the Company’s Compensation Committee;
- Director compensation. Any compensation paid to a director for service as a director if such compensation is approved (or recommended to the Board of Directors for approval) by the Company’s Compensation Committee;
- Certain transactions with other companies. Any transaction with another company at which a Related Party’s only relationship is as an employee (other than an executive officer or director) or beneficial owner of less than five percent of that company’s equity securities;
- Substantially comparable transactions with the same party. Any transaction substantially comparable to a previously Committee-approved transaction with the same party entered in the ordinary course of business, on terms no less favorable to the Company than terms that could have been reached with an unrelated third party on a negotiated, arm’s-length basis, provided that any transactions with Exempt Companies (as defined in Appendix A) shall require approval;
- Transactions where all shareholders receive proportional benefits. Any transactions, arrangements or relationships where the Related Party’s interest arises solely from the ownership of the Company’s common stock and all holders of the Company’s common stock received the same benefit on a pro rata basis (e.g., dividends or stock splits);
- Regulated transactions. Any transactions, arrangements or relationships with a Related Party involving the rendering of services as a common or contract carrier, or public utility, at rates or charges fixed in conformity with law or governmental authority; and
- Certain banking-related services. Any transactions, arrangements or relationships with a Related Party involving services as a bank depositary of funds, transfer agent, registrar, trustee under a trust indenture, or similar services.
A Related Party Transaction entered into without pre-approval of the Committee shall not be deemed to violate this Policy, or be invalid or unenforceable, so long as the transaction is brought to the Committee and ratified as promptly as reasonably practical after it is entered into or after it becomes reasonably apparent that the transaction is covered by this Policy. To the extent that the Committee does not ratify or approve such transaction, the transaction shall be rescinded as soon as reasonably practicable. Any Related Party Transactions that are not entered in accordance with this Policy and for which the Committee later fails to ratify or rescind shall be publicly disclosed to stockholders in the Company’s next periodic report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
All Board members shall submit to the General Counsel an up-to-date list of companies in which they are a director, an officer, and/or of which they own a controlling interest, and shall promptly update the list when any changes occur.
Effective Date: March 31, 2018