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

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


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

Modify and Request Information From Portfolio Companies

What’s new?

Our Portfolio Insights clients can now easily request information from their Portfolio Companies. We’ve created the flexibility to select file types, KPIs, or information about the portfolio companies’ upcoming financings.

How it works

  1. Navigate to Manage RFIs under Settings and select which companies from your portfolio you’d like to make edits to:

    1. Enabled: Will request data from Portfolio Companies
    2. Fiscal Schedule: Control if your request is a standard quarter end, or +1 or +2 month end (e.g. Q2 fiscal schedule of July 30 or August 30)
    3. FND: Ask if Portfolio Company will be raising funds in the next year, if so, by when and how much.
    4. AER: Do you want to send automatic email reminders if the Portfolio Companies did not reply.
    5. Period: Request income statement figures for the last 3 months, 6 months, or 12 months
    6. Requested Files: Request between:

      1. Articles of incorporation and Cap Table (for companies that don’t manage their cap table on Carta)
      2. Financials
      3. Forecast and Board Decks.
    7. Requested KPIs: Select from the list of 40 industry standard KPIs (Users, ARR, Web Traffic, etc). Enable KPIs individually or in industry-specific batches.
  1. Toggle data collection, tailor the documents to be requested, and enable various KPI fields for a more intuitive RFI preparation process

  1. Save preferences and send your next portfolio RFI during your typical request cadence.
  1. Portfolio company upload portals will be customized accordingly, ensuring you’re only requesting exactly what you need from each logo

Suggestions

We recommend limiting KPIs to 3 or 4 to keep portfolio company upload portals from becoming overwhelming. 

Limitations

Custom KPI (i.e. those that don’t exist in our drop down) functionality is scheduled to be available late Q3 2021.

Timing

The configuration page is currently released and enabled for all Portfolio Insights clients.

Questions?

For more information regarding RFI configuration, or portfolio insights, please reach out directly to your portfolio insights account manager or portfolio-kpi@carta.com.

Home Screen Redesign on Mobile

Users with holdings in private companies can now view their holdings details straight from the home screen for easy access.

Who this affects

Shareholders with holdings in private companies.

Supported Platforms

  • iOS & Android

What’s New

With an objective to provide insightful experiences, we’ve redesigned the home screen on the Carta app to display important holding details for each company. Company cards will now present the following information with the ability to view further details when clicked:

  • Total number of options held, number of options vested and exercised 
  • A vesting progress bar comparing the number of vested and exercised options to the total options granted
  • Summary of securities displaying types and quantities for each held

Instant KYC for LPs Completing Subscription Documents

Limited Partners completing subscription documents on Carta can now be KYC’ed instantly.


What’s New

If your fund leverages Carta’s KYC/AML service and you have Limited Partners (LPs) completing subscription documents in Carta, these LPs are now instantly KYC’ed on the platform. 

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


Limitations

  • For this first release, only individual (as opposed to entity) LPs are KYC’ed. Future releases will support KYC for entity (non-individual) LPs as well. This includes KYC for the LP entity, LP control person, and LP beneficial owners
  • For this first release, only US-based LPs are supported. Future releases will extend support to non-US LPs


How it Works

  1. As an LP completes their subscription documents, individual LPs (for funds that avail of Carta’s KYC/AML service), will now see a dedicated Know Your Customer section. Here, LPs can input the additionally required information for KYC -


  2. Once subscription documents are signed by the LP, the LP is instantly KYC’ed. If the LP passes KYC, this is immediately reflected in Carta and General Partners are notified to countersign -


    Timing: Rolled out to Limited Partners on July 1, 2021


    Audience: Limited Partners, General Partners

Public Cash Exercising Redesign

Users: Option holders of public companies
Platform: Web (iOS and Android coming soon)


With an objective to unify the cash exercising experience between private and public companies, we've enhanced the Public "Cash" Exercising flow on Web to make the steps more seamless, intuitive and easy to follow. Implementing these changes to the exercising workflow allows users to review all the important details relating to their option grant exercise in a step-by-step manner, eliminating confusion about tax withholdings and allows them to better understand the stages of their exercise.

While our previous Cash Exercising workflow for public companies got us some great mileage, our processes and their caveats have evolved, which called for a cleaner, simpler and an overall better user experience. Below are some of the highlights that the new Cash Exercising workflow will introduce:

  1. Step-by-step procedure: Intuitive and easy to follow, allowing the user to fully understand the process
  2. Improved tax estimation/information: Targeted tax withholdings information provided to user with respect to the option grant type being exercised
  3. Cleaner UI: Revamped headings, body text, call to action, helpful support links and more!
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