|GREENSKY, INC. filed this Form 10-Q on 11/09/2018|
GS Holdings may be required to make tax distributions that, in the aggregate, may exceed the amount of taxes that GS Holdings would have paid if it were itself taxed on its net income at the assumed rate.
Funds used by GS Holdings to satisfy its tax distribution obligations will not be available for reinvestment in our business. Moreover, the tax distributions that GS Holdings will be required to make may be substantial and may exceed (as a percentage of GS Holdings’ income) the overall effective tax rate applicable to a similarly situated corporate taxpayer.
We may be required to pay additional taxes as a result of the new partnership audit rules.
The Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 changed the rules applicable to U.S. federal income tax audits of partnerships, including entities such as GS Holdings that are taxed as a partnership. Under these rules (which generally are effective for taxable years beginning after December 31, 2017), subject to certain exceptions, audit adjustments to items of income, gain, loss, deduction, or credit of an entity (and any member’s share thereof) is determined, and taxes, interest, and penalties attributable thereto, are assessed and collected, at the entity level. Although it is uncertain how these rules will be implemented, it is possible that they could result in GS Holdings being required to pay additional taxes, interest and penalties as a result of an audit adjustment, and we, as a member of GS Holdings, could be required to indirectly bear the economic burden of those taxes, interest, and penalties even though we may not otherwise have been required to pay additional corporate-level taxes as a result of the related audit adjustment.
Under certain circumstances, GS Holdings may be eligible to make an election to cause members (including us) to take into account the amount of any understatement, including any interest and penalties, in accordance with their interests in GS Holdings in the year under audit. We cannot provide any assurance that GS Holdings will be able to make this election, in which case current members (including us) would economically bear the burden of the understatement even if they had a different percentage interest in GS Holdings during the year under audit, unless, and only to the extent, GS Holdings is able to recover such amounts from current or former impacted members. If the election is made, members would be required to take the adjustment into account in the taxable year in which the adjusted Schedule K-1s are issued.
The changes created by these new rules are sweeping and in many respects dependent on the promulgation of future regulations or other guidance by the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
The owners of the Class B common stock, who also are the Continuing LLC Members, control us and their interests may conflict with yours in the future.
The owners of the Class B common stock, who also are the Continuing LLC Members, control us. Each share of our Class B common stock initially entitles its holders to ten votes on all matters presented to our stockholders generally. Once the collective holdings of those owners in the aggregate are less than 15% of the combined economic interest in us, each share of Class B common stock will entitle its holder to one vote per share on all matters to be voted upon by our stockholders.
The owners of the Class B common stock owned the vast majority of the combined voting power of our Class A and Class B common stock as of September 30, 2018. Accordingly, those owners, if voting in the same manner, will be able to control the election and removal of our directors and thereby determine our corporate and management policies, including potential mergers or acquisitions, payment of dividends, asset sales, amendment of our certificate of incorporation and bylaws and other significant corporate transactions for so long as they retain significant ownership of us. This concentration of ownership may delay or deter possible changes in control of our Company, which may reduce the value of an investment in our Class A common stock. So long as they continue to own a significant amount of our combined voting power, even if such amount is less than 50%, they will continue to be able to strongly influence or effectively control our decisions.
In addition, the owners of the Class B common stock, as Continuing LLC Members, owned approximately 69% of the Holdco Units as of September 30, 2018. Because they hold their economic ownership interest in our business through GS Holdings, rather than GreenSky, Inc., these existing unit holders may have conflicting interests with holders of our Class A common stock. For example, the Continuing LLC Members may have different tax positions from us, which could influence their decisions regarding whether and when to dispose of assets and whether and when to incur new or refinance existing indebtedness, especially in light of the existence of the TRA. In addition,