On July 19, 2016, the Advisory Committee on Small and Emerging Companies met to discuss the “accredited investor” definition, the Regulation A market, and the Commission’s recent proposal regarding the definition of “small reporting companies.” In introductory remarks, Chair White shared that the Commission has received 40 comment letters regarding the Commission’s study on the definition of “accredited investor” and hopes to receive further input from the investment community and the Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee confirmed its proposed recommendations to the Commission Staff, which include expanding the definition of “accredited investor” to encompass those with professional accreditations (including Series 7, 65, 82 and Chartered Financial Analyst), prior investment experience and, those who pass an accredited investor examination, among other criteria. Commissioner Stein, in discussing the proposal for modifying the thresholds for SRCs, expressed particular concern about whether the benefits of scaled disclosure will outweigh the potential lower liquidity and high cost of capital that may result from such changes. By expanding the definition to include companies with up to a $250 million public float, Committee members stressed that companies, including those prospering through successful Regulation A+ offerings, will enjoy a lighter regulatory burden, which should make offerings more attractive. The SEC has requested comment on this proposal.

Chair White’s remarks are available at https://www.sec.gov/news/statement/opening-remarks-before-the-sec-advisory-committee-on-small-and-e.html