Option exercise settings for exercises initiated and settled on Carta

Managing option exercising is now easier than ever. 

International optionholders of US companies can now exercise online via wire transfer to Carta. As a result, all US companies can now settle exercises through Carta, for both ACH and wire transfers payments. Carta conveniently manages payment reconciliation and payment issues such as insufficient funds or overpayments. This new feature is controlled via the new Transaction Settings page. 

Who this affects:

  • 🇺🇸 US companies, public and private

What's new:

  • 💸 All exercises are settled with Carta - company admins will no longer need to mark exercises as paid. No matter where optionholdersers are located, Carta will receive funding for on-platform exercises - US holders pay for their exercise via ACH and non-US holders pay for their exercise via a wire transfer to Carta.
  • ⚙️ Clear transaction settings - company admins control option grant exercisability easily in one central location within Transaction Settings, under Company Settings.
  • Auto-cancel unpaid exercises - A wire exercise is automatically cancelled if unfunded or underfunded for 30 days after admin approval.
  • ✉️Communication with optionholders - Carta communicates directly with optionholders to resolve payment issues, letting them know of an outstanding balance for an exercise or facilitating a refund for overpayment. 

Action required: 

  • Configuring Transaction Settings will enable access to online wire exercises for international optionholders.
  • Visit Company > Settings > Transaction Settings to opt in. Note: Opting "out" does not disrupt the current company or transaction settings. Access to Transaction Settings does not impact users' ability to exercise.

Timing:

  • Rollout begins Oct 14, 2021
  • Rollout to reach 100% of all customers by the end of 2021

Resources: 

Qualified Small Business Stock (QSBS)

What’s new

Companies using Carta for 409A will now be additionally assessed for qualified small business eligibility at no extra cost to the company.

Certificates issued by a qualified small business as determined by Carta will have a "QSBS" tag in the product to indicate that the shares represent Qualified Small Business Stock (QSBS). The goal of these tags is help stakeholders make more informed selling decisions.

The IRC’s definition of a qualified small business is restrictive yet vague and open for interpretation at the edges, so potential holders of QSBS should consult their tax advisor before making decisions to sell and claiming the QSBS tax benefit.

How it works

Based on company-provided information during the valuations process, Carta will assess the following criteria for qualified small business eligibility:

  • Company's gross assets are $50M USD or less
  • Company is an active business
  • Company is a C-corp
  • Company does not operate in excluded industries

If a company is identified as a qualified small business, a new badge will appear in the 409A dashboard:

If a stakeholder receives a certificate from a qualified small business but hasn't yet met the 5 year holding period for QSBS, they'll see a "QSBS eligible" tag in their portfolio:

Drilling into the security, the stakeholder will see some additional information about the QSBS status of the certificate:

Stakeholders who have held shares issued by a qualified small business for 5 years will see a "QSBS" tag in their portfolio instead:

Additional Resources

For detailed information about QSBS in Carta, please refer to our QSBS support article.

Who this affects

Companies using Carta for 409A and their stakeholders.

Timing

  • Available now to 50 randomly selected 409A customers
  • General availability for all 409A customers coming in two weeks

Partially Canceling Option Grants


What’s new

Legal administrators in Carta can now partially cancel an option grant in Carta. Partially canceling an option grant will reduce the number of outstanding shares and return the shares back to the option pool.

How it works

You'll find the partial cancellation tool by navigating Securities > Equity awards and clicking on the ledger dropdown for the specific option you'd like to partially cancel:

First, you'll be asked to provide an effective date for the partial cancellation. A partial cancellation is an amendment to the option grant, and the effective date will determine when the amendment takes effect in the company's as-of date reporting.

Next, select the cancellation method, which determines how the partial cancellation will affect the vesting schedule for the option grant. Because a partial cancellation reduces the outstanding quantity of the option, Carta needs to know from which tranches the shares should be canceled.

Last in, first out cancellation method

For some situations, the issuer or their legal counsel may not specify the way in which the amendment will affect the vesting schedule. Issuers can select the last in, first out cancellation for the vesting schedule, and Carta will cancel shares starting from the future-most tranche and move up the vesting schedule until the specified quantity has been canceled.

Custom cancellation method

For situations in which the issuer or their legal counsel want to affect the vesting schedule in a specific manner with a partial cancellation, issuers can select the "Custom" share allocation method - this approach provides flexibility and allows the issuer to cancel shares from any tranche. The in-app spreadsheet allows legal administrators to first reflect the partial cancellation in a spreadsheet application outside of Carta and then copy/paste the resulting vesting tranches back into Carta.

After selecting "Review and confirm" at the bottom of the page, verify the cancellation quantity and other information to save the partial cancellation.

Additional Resources

For more information around the limitations and best practices for the partial cancellation tool, please refer to this support article.

Who this affects

The new partial cancellation tool is available to the legal administrators in all of Carta's private market customers.

Timing

Available now.

View Public Company Holdings on Mobile

Users with holdings in public companies will now have the ability to view their holdings for both public and private companies straight from the Carta iOS app. Shareholders can now track market values, view total holdings value and more.

Who this affects

Shareholders with holdings in public companies.

Supported platforms

  • iOS (Android coming soon)

What's new

With an aim to provide functional and streamlined experiences for shareholders, we’ve brought the ability to view public holdings on the Carta iOS app. Public company cards will now be present among private companies on the home screen. The following information will be displayed for each public company card with the ability to view further details when clicked:

  • Total number of shares held
  • Total holdings value
  • Net holdings value

New Shareholder Experience Page

We are making it easier for companies to keep employees, investors, and other stakeholders informed about their holdings and company changes. 

Companies have historically been able to grant viewing permissions to their stakeholders via our Cap Table Sharing page and features. This experience, however, was burdensome for many company administrators who found themselves having to change sharing settings as new stakeholders were added to their cap table or existing stakeholders changed their relationship to the company, such as an employee leaving the company or an investor exiting their position.

With our new Shareholder Experience page, company administrators can designate what type of information they want to share with their different stakeholders and set rules based on these preferences. By setting permissions by rules instead of a stakeholder-by-stakeholder process, we make it easier for company administrators to get the right stakeholders the appropriate information and reflect their information sharing philosophy.

Companies can choose to enable a specific shareholder experience based on the relationship of the stakeholder to the company. For example, companies can choose what information founders, investors, employees, and former employees, and other stakeholders access on Carta. We’ve renamed, updated, and simplified our access levels to Restricted, Basic, Advanced, and Full Details. We include a “Recommended” level for different relationships (e.g. Investors = Advanced) to help guide founders and other company administrators on setting up their Shareholder Experience based on user feedback. 

We’ve also added a new rule where former stakeholders--those who no longer have an active investment or holding in the company--will automatically be downgraded to Restricted automatically. This means that as stakeholders enter and exit the cap table, their respective shareholder experience will update automatically.

New Shareholder Experience page: Group levels

We know that sometimes it’s important for company administrators to create experiences specific to a single stakeholder or user. The new Shareholder Experience feature allows companies to set overrides for specific stakeholders in the “Individual levels” tab. We also provide information on that stakeholder’s relationship and holdings information.

New Shareholder Experience page: Individual levels



To help ensure company administrators set access levels that best fit the needs of their stakeholders, our access level guide is clickable from either the Group Level or Individual Level views of the new Shareholder Experience.

Access level guide

We appreciate our users’ feedback on how to make this page clearer and easier to use. We hope these improvements save company administrators valuable time and help them mirror their company information sharing philosophy in our software.

Who is this available for?

The cap table sharing page is available currently via a limited release to select Carta companies. In the coming weeks, we will begin to allow additional companies to migrate to the new Shareholder Experience feature set. This new product is not limited by subscription tier.

Companies with the new Shareholder Experience features enabled can visit Stakeholders > Shareholder Experience. 

If you’d like to enable the new Shareholder Experience page for your company, you can also contact us.

Instant KYC for Non-Individual LPs Completing Subscription Documents

Non-individual Limited Partners who complete subscription documents on Carta can now be KYC’ed instantly.

What’s New

This release is a follow-up to our KYC for Individual LPs feature. If your fund leverages Carta’s KYC/AML service and you have non-individual Limited Partners (LPs) completing subscription documents in Carta, these LPs can now be instantly KYC’ed on the platform. Carta instantly KYCs the LP's control person and beneficial owner(s) in addition to the LP entity itself.

Carta’s instant KYC feature is made possible by Carta integrations with identity and verification databases like LexisNexis, Ekata, Socure, and more.


Limitations

  • For this release, only US-based LPs are supported for instant KYC. Future releases will extend support to non-US LPs


How it Works

  1. As an LP completes their subscription documents, non-individual LPs (for funds that avail of Carta’s KYC/AML service) will see a dedicated Know Your Customer section. Upon landing here, LPs will first be asked if their control person and beneficial owner(s) are all US persons - 





  2. If the control person and beneficial owner(s) are all US persons, then the LP will be shown forms to enter KYC information for these individual(s) -






  3. Finally, the LP is also able to upload any entity formation documents and photo IDs here:



  4. Once subscription documents are signed by the LP, the following are instantly KYC'ed: the LP entity, control person, and beneficial owner(s). If all pass KYC, this is immediately reflected in the Carta UI and General Partners are notified to countersign -


    Timing: Rolled out to all on Aug 31, 2021

    Audience: US-based Limited Partners, General Partners


VC Firm Access Update

What’s new

We're updating firm permissions to be more granular for larger firms, while keeping them easy to manage for emerging managers.

Fund Admin clients on Carta will now have the ability to grant users on their accounts access to only the information they need: Investments, Limited Partner information, Fund Admin, and Fund performance data.


How it works

Admins on a VC firm account have the ability to add users and update their permissions. Permissions are controlled under Settings on a firm account. Non-admins can go to the Settings page to see who the admin on their account is.

Basic VC firm accounts on Carta will be able to grant users Admin or Investments access.

Firms that use Carta for additional services have the ability to grant users additional permissions for each fund in the firm.

Permission

Grants access to

Admin

  • Add, update, or remove other users on the firm
  • Accept securities on behalf of the funds in the firm
  • Update payment information for the funds in the firm
  • Complete tender offers on behalf of funds in the firm
  • Use the portfolio merge tool

Investments

  • Company information for companies that fund has invested in
  • Schedule of investments

Partners

  • Access to partner information, including contact information, commitment amount, and parter documents
  • Access to fundraising and closings tools

Fund Admin

  • Access to fund administration information, including capital calls, distributions, and quarterly reports
  • Ability to communicate with fund admin team through Carta
  • Ability to request and approve fund admin updates

Fund Performance

  • Access to fund performance data

Audit

  • View only access to investments, partners, fund admin, and fund performance data
  • Users with audit access cannot have other access to the fund

Defaults

For each user, an Admin can grant them “default” access to the firm. Defaults will automatically give users these permissions for new funds that are added to the account.


Additional Resources


Who this affects

This update affects all VC firm users on Carta. Users will not see a difference to their existing access with this change, but going forward Admins can update permissions.


Timing

We are rolling this out to a small number of firms starting on August 30 and plan to roll out to all firms within a few weeks.

[Early Access] Live Chat Support

Carta now offers Live Chat Support to Early Access Users. 

Who does this affect?

Law firm users and companies in Carta Launch 

What’s new?

Users can now opt to chat live with a Support Agent, in addition to the traditional Phone and Email Support. 

They can simply access the Help Center by clicking on the dialog balloon at the bottom right of the screen, where the Live Agent option will be available. 


After accepting the terms and conditions, the user will be connected to a specialized Support Agent. 

This rollout builds upon Carta's investment in a modernized approach to how our customers receive assistance in-app, enabling easy access to multiple engagement types to fit the context of the question, including: 

  • Chat
  • Voice and video
  • Co-browse
  • Screen-sharing 

All within the Help Center in-app! 

Get Help!

Carta is making it easier to get the answers our users need, when they need them. Introducing our one-click Help Center.

Who does this affect?

Company administrators and viewers, law firm users, and personal portfolio holders

What’s new?

Users can now access Carta's Help Center in one click by going to the dialog balloon icon at bottom right of the screen, where they can ask questions about the platform's workflows, products and features.  

Carta's Natural Language Processing technology will find the most helpful Support Articles for that query within our knowledge base, and provide users with the right answer for their questions.

In the event a question needs to be escalated to a Support Agent, Carta users can also raise Support Cases without leaving the page, and they will have multiple support options available to fit their engagement preference.

Email Cases created through this workflow leverage user's session data and context to quickly route the Case to Subject Matter Experts, leading to faster resolution times. 

When Phone is selected as the preferred method, the most appropriate phone number is displayed based on the user's type and question, ensuring users get connected to the right Support Agent for their need, without inconvenient call transfers. 

Learn more about Carta's Help Center

New Carta Launch onboarding for early stage founders


What’s new?

Early stage founders can get self-onboard onto Carta Launch faster than ever before. Founders with up to $1M raised or 25 stakeholders or fewer can now create an account and onboard company data with ease, speed, and confidence for free.  

Carta Launch is live on Product Hunt! We'd so appreciate your upvote!

How it works

Sign up and create your account

  1. On carta.com/launch, click “Get Free Access” 
  2. Fill out a simple form with your company information to create your account.



Guided onboarding

  1. We designed the new onboarding experience to be friendly and guide you through each step



  1. With just Incorporation Documents and Common Stock Purchase Agreements, you can enter information about your Company, Founder Shares, and Users & Roles to complete your onboarding.
  2. Once you’ve reviewed and activated your account, you’re all set to get started on Carta.

  1. Your free Carta Launch plan is suited to fit your immediate fundraising and equity needs and set your company up for success as it scales.


Additional resources 

  • For step by step instructions for how to get started find our video guide here
  • For more information about what is included in Launch, check out this video or check out our most recent blog post. 
  • For any additional questions, please reach out to partners@carta.com or get help through our in-app support. 





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