Commitments and Contingencies
|9 Months Ended|
Sep. 30, 2020
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|Commitments and Contingencies||
9. Commitments and Contingencies
In the ordinary course of business, the Company enters into non-cancelable leases to purchase equipment and for its facilities, including related party leases (see Note 10 – Transactions with Related Parties). Leases are accounted for as operating leases or finance leases, in accordance with ASC 842, Leases.
The Company leases office space in Miami, Florida and laboratory space in Bothell, Washington under operating leases that expire on August 31, 2021 and January 31, 2024, respectively. The Company recently signed an amendment to the Bothell, Washington lease agreement by extending the lease term for a period of sixty months from February 2019 through January 2024. For operating leases, the weighted average discount rate is 8.0% and the weighted average remaining lease term is 3.1 years.
The following table summarizes the Company’s maturities of operating lease liabilities, by year and in aggregate, as of September 30, 2020 (in thousands):
The operating lease liabilities summarized above do not include variable common area maintenance (CAM) charges, which are contractual liabilities under the Company’s Bothell, Washington lease. CAM charges for the Bothell, Washington facility are calculated annually based on actual common expenses for the building incurred by the lessor and proportionately billed to tenants based on leased square footage. For the nine months ended September 30, 2020 and 2019, approximately $54,000 and $60,000 of variable lease expense (CAM) was included in general and administrative operating expenses on the condensed consolidated statements of operations.
The minimum lease payments above include the amounts that would be paid if the Company maintains its Bothell lease for the five-year term, starting February 2019. The Company has the right to terminate this lease after three years on January 31, 2022, by giving prior notice at least nine months before the early termination date and by paying a termination fee equal to the sum of unamortized leasing commissions and reimbursement for tenant improvements provided by the landlord amortized at 8.0% over the extended term.
On September 1, 2018, the Company entered into a lease agreement with a limited liability company controlled by Dr. Phillip Frost, a director and a principal shareholder of the Company (see Note 10 – Transactions with Related Parties). The lease term is three years with an optional three-year extension. On an annualized basis, straight-line rent expense is approximately $58,000, including fixed and estimable fees and taxes. As of September 30, 2020, operating lease rights include $51,000 and operating lease liabilities include $53,000 relating to this lease.
For the nine months ended September 30, 2020 and 2019, operating lease expense, excluding short-term leases, finance leases and CAM charges, totaled approximately $171,000 and $169,000, respectively, of which $44,000 and $43,000 in each period was to a related party.
In November 2018, the Company entered into two lease agreements to acquire lab equipment with 18 monthly payments of $18,000 payable through May 27, 2020 and 36 monthly payments of $1,000 payable through November 21, 2021, respectively; in September 2020 the Company entered into a new lease agreement to acquire lab equipment with 36 payments of $2,000 monthly payable through April 16, 2023. For finance leases, the weighted average discount rate is 8.0% and the weighted average remaining lease term is 3.4 years.
The following table summarizes the Company’s maturities of finance lease liabilities, by year and in aggregate, as of September 30, 2020 (in thousands):
The leased lab equipment is depreciable over five years and is presented net of accumulated depreciation on the condensed consolidated balance sheets under property and equipment. As of September 30, 2020, total right-of-use lab equipment and accumulated depreciation recognized under finance leases is $119,000 and $21,000, respectively, and depreciation expense for the nine months ended September 30, 2020 was $38,000. As of December 31, 2019, total right-of-use assets lab equipment exchanged for finance lease liabilities was $347,000 and accumulated depreciation for lab equipment under finance leases was $75,000.
At September 30, 2020, the aggregate outstanding balance of finance lease liabilities, current and long-term, is $84,000 and the Company expects to pay future interest charges of $7,000 over the remaining finance lease terms. At December 31, 2019, the aggregate outstanding balance of finance lease liabilities, current and long-term, was $117,000 and the Company expects to pay future interest charges of $4,000 over the remaining finance lease terms. For the nine months ended September 30, 2020, the Company paid $107,000 and $6,000 in principal and interest, respectively, totaling financing cash out flows of $113,000, net of interest expense, for amount included in the measurement of lease liabilities for finance leases. For the nine months ended September 30, 2019, the Company paid $159,000 and $16,000 in principal and interest, respectively, totaling financing cash out flows of $ 175,000 for amounts included in the measurement of lease liabilities for finance leases and added back to net income the $16,000 of interest expense under cash flows from operating activities.
From time to time, the Company is a party to, or otherwise involved in, legal proceedings arising in the normal course of business. As of the date of this report, except as described below, the Company is not aware of any proceedings, threatened or pending, against it which, if determined adversely, would have a material effect on its business, results of operations, cash flows or financial position.
On September 20, 2018, Anthony Pepe, individually and on behalf of a class, filed with the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey a complaint against the Company, certain current and former executive officers and directors of the Company and the other defendants named therein for violation of Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder. The class consists of the persons and entities who purchased the Company’s common stock during the period from September 23, 2013 through September 7, 2018. Pepe also alleges violation of other sections of the Exchange Act by the defendants named in the complaint other than the Company. Pepe seeks damages, pre-judgment and post-judgment interest, reasonable attorneys’ fees, expert fees and other costs.
On January 16, 2019, Ms. Susan Church, a stockholder of the Company, filed with the United States District Court for the Western District of Washington a derivative suit against certain current and former executive officers and directors of the Company alleging breach of fiduciary duties, unjust enrichment, waste of corporate assets, and violations of the rules governing proxy solicitation. Church seeks, among other things, money damages, disgorgement of profits from alleged wrongful conduct, including cash bonuses, pre-judgment and post-judgment interest, reasonable attorneys’ fees, expert fees and other costs.
On July 2, 2020, the Company negotiated and executed term sheets with respect to the proposed settlement of the class action, the derivative lawsuit discussed above, and two related derivative actions. The term sheets are subject to approval by the court. As of September 30, 2020, the Company agreed to pay $450,000 for its share of the total proposed class action settlement. The final settlement hearing for the class action and derivative lawsuits is scheduled for December 16, 2020.
As for the settlement of the derivative lawsuits, the Company agreed to make certain corporate governance changes. On September 22, 2020, United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, where one of the derivative actions was pending, entered an order preliminarily approving the Stipulation and Agreement of Settlement, dated August 20, 2020 (the “Stipulation”) by and among the plaintiffs in the derivative actions, the Company as the nominal defendant, and defendants, including certain of the Company’s current and former directors and officers. The settlement as documented in the Stipulation covers all three derivative actions and is subject to the approval of the Court. The proposed settlement requires that certain defendants named in the Stipulation, other than the Company, pay the plaintiffs’ attorneys’ fees and expenses in the amount of $275,000, and that the Company adopt within 60 days of the final approval of the settlement by the Court certain corporate governance enhancements.
Liberty Insurance Underwriters Inc. filed suit against us in federal court in Delaware seeking a declaratory judgment that it is not liable to defend us in the class and derivative litigation. The insurance company also is claiming it is entitled to recover $1 million it advanced to us in connection with a prior SEC investigation, of which the Company disagrees with the insurance company position. We have retained counsel to defend us which has filed an answer to the complaint.
In November 2017, Lee Pederson, a former Biozone lawyer, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Minnesota against co-defendants the Company, Dr. Phillip Frost, OPKO Health, Inc. and Brian Keller alleging that defendants engaged in wrongful conduct related to Biozone, including causing Biozone to enter into an allegedly improper licensing agreement and engaged in alleged market manipulation. On September 13, 2018, the United States District Court granted the Company and its co-defendants’ motion to dismiss Pederson’s amended complaint for lack of personal jurisdiction in Minnesota. On October 11, 2018, Pederson filed a notice of appeal with the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. The plaintiff’s appeal was denied and the dismissal affirmed. In July 2019, Lee Pederson filed another lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in Minnesota against co-defendants the Company, Dr. Frost, and Daniel Fisher. In his complaint, Pederson alleges tortious interference by the Company and Dr. Frost with an alleged collaboration agreement between Mr. Pederson and Mr. Fisher. Mr. Pederson seeks damages in the amount of $800,000 or such other amount as may be determined at trial. This lawsuit had previously been stayed by the court, pending disposition of Pederson’s first lawsuit. With that first lawsuit having been dismissed and appeal denied, the stay was lifted, and the Company was served in July 2020 with the complaint initiating that second lawsuit. The Company is reviewing the complaint with counsel. On October 14, 2020, the Company and co-defendants’ motions for, among other things, dismissal for lack of personal jurisdiction in that second lawsuit were heard by the court, and the Company and co-defendants are awaiting a ruling from the trial court.
On May 19, 2020, A.G.P./Alliance Global Partners (“AGP”), which had previously acted as the Company’s underwriter, placement agent and sales agent in connection with the Company’s registered and exempt equity offerings, filed a lawsuit against the Company in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York alleging violation of a lock-up provision under the Placement Agent Agreement, dated January 28, 2020 (the “Placement Agent Agreement”), by and between the Company and AGP. AGP seeks (i) damages estimated in the complaint to be in excess of $1 million and attorneys’ fees, and (ii) declaratory relief. The Company has filed a motion to dismiss the complaint.
While the Company intends to defend itself vigorously from the claims in the aforementioned disputes, it is unable to predict the outcome of these legal proceedings. Any potential loss as a result of these legal proceedings cannot be reasonably estimated. As a result, the Company has not recorded a loss contingency for any of the aforementioned claims.
Our administrative and finance activities are fully functional out of our Miami, Florida location and our research laboratory in Bothell, Washington remains open for essential operations while meeting COVID-19 quarantine challenges. Our scientists are also able to continue working on site and remotely and we remain committed to meeting our corporate and development milestones throughout the year. We have experienced delays in our supply chain and with service partners as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Also because of the unknown impact from the COVID-19 pandemic, it may have unanticipated material adverse effects on us in a number of ways including:
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef