10-K 1 f10k2020_riceacquisition.htm ANNUAL REPORT

 

 

UNITED STATES
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549

 

FORM 10-K

 

(Mark One)
ANNUAL REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(D) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2020

 

TRANSITION REPORT PURSUANT TO SECTION 13 OR 15(D) OF THE SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934

 

For the transition period from          to          

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

 

Delaware

 

001-1823766

 

85-2867266

(State or other jurisdiction of
incorporation or organization)
  (Commission File Number)   (I.R.S. Employer
Identification Number)

 

102 East Main Street, Second Story

Carnegie, Pennsylvania

 

15106

(Address of principal executive offices)   (Zip Code)

 

Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: (713) 446-6259

 

Not Applicable
(Former name or former address, if changed since last report)

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Act:

 

Title of Each Class:

 

Trading Symbol:

 

Name of Each Exchange on Which Registered:

Units, each consisting of one share of Class A common stock, $0.0001 par value, and one-half of one warrant   RICE.U   The New York Stock Exchange
Shares of Class A common stock included as part of the units   RICE   The New York Stock Exchange
Warrants included as part of the units, each whole warrant exercisable for one share of Class A common stock at an exercise price of $11.50   RICE WS   The New York Stock Exchange

 

Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act: None

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is a well-known seasoned issuer, as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act. Yes ☐  No ☒

 

Indicate by check mark if the registrant is not required to file reports pursuant to Section 13 or Section 15(d) of the Exchange Act. Yes ☐  No ☒

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes ☒  No ☐

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has submitted electronically every Interactive Data File required to be submitted pursuant to Rule 405 of Regulation S-T (§ 232.405 of this chapter) during the preceding 12 months (or for such shorter period that the registrant was required to submit and post such files). Yes ☒  No ☐

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a large accelerated filer, an accelerated filer, a non-accelerated filer, a smaller reporting company or an emerging growth company. See definition of “large accelerated filer,” “accelerated filer, “smaller reporting company” and “emerging growth company” in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act.

 

Large accelerated filer Accelerated filer
Non-accelerated filer Smaller reporting company
    Emerging growth company

 

If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ☐

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant has filed a report on and attestation to its management's assessment of the effectiveness of its internal control over financial reporting under Section 404(b) of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (15 U.S.C. 7262(b)) by the registered public accounting firm that prepared or issued its audit report. ☐

 

Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is a shell company (as defined in Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act). Yes ☒  No ☐

 

As of June 30, 2020, the last business day of the registrant’s most recently completed second fiscal quarter, the registrant’s securities were not publicly traded. The registrant’s units began trading on The New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) on October 22, 2020 and the registrant’s shares of Class A common stock, par value $0.0001 (the “Class A common stock”) and warrants began trading on the NYSE on December 14, 2020. The aggregate market value of the common stock outstanding, other than shares held by persons who may be deemed affiliates of the registrant, computed by reference to the closing sales price for the shares of common stock on March 19, 2021, as reported on the NYSE, was $127,909,348 (based on the closing sales price of the Class A common stock on March 19, 2021 of $10.27).

 

As of March 19, 2021, 23,727,500 shares of Class A common stock, par value $0.0001, and 5,931,350 shares of Class B common stock, par value $0.0001, were issued and outstanding.

 

Documents Incorporated by Reference: None.

 

 

 

 

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

    Page
CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS   iv
     
SUMMARY OF RISK FACTORS   v
     
PART I   1
Item 1. Business   1
Item 1A. Risk Factors   19
Item 1B. Unresolved Staff Comments   51
Item 2. Properties   51
Item 3. Legal Proceedings   51
Item 4. Mine Safety Disclosures   51
       
PART II   52
Item 5. Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities   52
Item 6. Selected Financial Data   53
Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations   53
Item 7A. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk   57
Item 8. Consolidated Financial Statements And Supplementary Data   57
Item 9. Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure   57
Item 9A. Controls and Procedures   57
       
PART III   58
Item 10. Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance   58
Item 11. Executive Compensation   66
Item 12. Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters   67
Item 13. Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence   69
Item 14. Principal Accountant Fees and Services   73
       
PART IV   74
Item 15. Exhibits, Financial Statements Schedules   74
Item 16. Form 10-K Summary   75

 

i

 

 

CERTAIN TERMS

 

Unless otherwise stated in this Annual Report on Form 10-K (this “Report”), or the context otherwise requires, references to:

 

“Affiliated Joint Acquisition” are to an acquisition opportunity jointly with our sponsor, or one or more affiliates, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies;

 

“Atlas Point Fund” are to Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC, a Delaware limited liability company;

 

“Common stock” are to our Class A common stock and our Class B common stock, collectively;

 

“equity-linked securities” are to any securities of our company or any of our subsidiaries which are convertible into, or exchangeable or exercisable for, equity securities of our company or such subsidiary, including any securities issued by our company or any of our subsidiaries which are pledged to secure any obligation of any holder to purchase equity securities of our company or any of our subsidiaries, and including Opco Units;

 

“forward purchase agreement” are to the agreement that provides for the sale of the forward purchase securities to Atlas Point Fund in a private placement that will close simultaneously with the closing of our initial business combination;

 

“forward purchase securities” are to either the forward purchase units valued at $10.00 per unit or the forward purchase shares valued at $9.67 per share, which may be issued at our discretion pursuant to the forward purchase agreement;

 

“forward purchase shares” are to our Class A common stock that may be issued pursuant to the forward purchase agreement;

 

“forward purchase units” are to the units, consisting of one share of our Class A common stock and one-third of one warrant that may be issued pursuant to the forward purchase agreement;

 

“forward purchase warrants” are to the warrants that may be sold as part of the forward purchase units pursuant to the forward purchase agreement;

 

“founder shares” are to the Class B Units of Opco initially issued in a private placement to our sponsor prior to our initial public offering (or the Class A Units of Opco into which such Class B Units will convert) and a corresponding number of shares of our non-economic Class B common stock;

 

“initial stockholders” are to holders of our founder shares and sponsor shares prior to our initial public offering, including Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC;

 

“management” or our “management team” are to our officers and directors;

 

“Opco” is to Rice Acquisition Holdings LLC;

 

“Opco Units” are to the Class A Units and Class B Units of Opco;

 

“private placement warrants” are to the warrants issued to our sponsor and Atlas Point Fund in private placements simultaneously with the closing of our initial public offering;

 

“public shares” are to shares of our Class A common stock sold as part of the units in our initial public offering and, unless otherwise stated herein, the 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock forming part of the sponsor shares, which collectively represent 100% of the economic interests in Rice Acquisition Corp.;

 

ii

 

 

“public stockholders” are to the holders of our public shares, including our initial stockholders and management team to the extent our initial stockholders and/or members of our management team purchase public shares, provided that each initial stockholder’s and member of our management team’s status as a “public stockholder” shall only exist with respect to such public shares;

 

“public warrants” are to the warrants sold as part of the units in our initial public offering;

 

“Rice Investment Group” is a multi-strategy fund controlled by the Rice family and other members of our management focused on a diverse array of energy related investments, including energy transition investments;

 

“sponsor” are to Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC, a Delaware limited liability company. Our sponsor is controlled by its managing members, Daniel Joseph Rice, IV and J. Kyle Derham, and owned by members of our management and other individuals, and is an affiliate of Rice Investment Group;

 

“sponsor shares” are to the 100 Class A Units of Opco and corresponding number of shares of our non-economic Class B common stock (which together will be exchangeable into shares of Class A common stock after our initial business combination on a one-for-one basis) and the 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock purchased by our sponsor in a private placement prior to our initial public offering; and

 

“we,” “us,” “company” or “our company” are to Rice Acquisition Corp. and Opco.

 

iii

 

 

CAUTIONARY NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

 

This Report, including, without limitation, statements under the heading “Item 7. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations,” includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, (the “Securities Act”) and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, (the “Exchange Act”). These forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology, including the words “believes,” “estimates,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “intends,” “plans,” “may,” “will,” “potential,” “projects,” “predicts,” “continue,” or “should,” or, in each case, their negative or other variations or comparable terminology. There can be no assurance that actual results will not materially differ from expectations. Such statements include, but are not limited to, any statements relating to our ability to consummate any acquisition or other business combination and any other statements that are not statements of current or historical facts. These statements are based on management’s current expectations, but actual results may differ materially due to various factors, including, but not limited to:

 

our ability to select an appropriate target business or businesses;

 

our ability to complete an initial business combination;

 

our expectations around the performance of the prospective target business or businesses;

 

our success in retaining or recruiting, or changes required in, our officers, key employees or directors following our initial business combination;

 

our officers and directors allocating their time to other businesses and potentially having conflicts of interest with our business or in approving our initial business combination;

 

our potential ability to obtain additional financing to complete our initial business combination;

 

our pool of prospective target businesses;

 

our ability to consummate an initial business combination due to the uncertainty resulting from the recent COVID-19 pandemic and other events (such as terrorist attacks, natural disasters or other significant outbreaks of infectious diseases);

 

the ability of our officers and directors to generate a number of potential investment opportunities;

 

our public securities’ potential liquidity and trading;

 

the lack of a market for our securities;

 

the use of proceeds not held in the trust account or available to us from interest income on the trust account balance;

 

the trust account not being subject to claims of third parties; or

 

our financial performance following our initial public offering.

 

The forward-looking statements contained in this Report are based on our current expectations and beliefs concerning future developments and their potential effects on us. Future developments affecting us may not be those that we have anticipated. These forward-looking statements involve a number of risks, uncertainties (some of which are beyond our control) and other assumptions that may cause actual results or performance to be materially different from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those factors described under the heading “Risk Factors.” Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should any of our assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary in material respects from those projected in these forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required under applicable securities laws. These risks and others described under “Risk Factors” may not be exhaustive.

 

By their nature, forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties because they relate to events and depend on circumstances that may or may not occur in the future. We caution you that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and that our actual results of operations, financial condition and liquidity, and developments in the industry in which we operate may differ materially from those made in or suggested by the forward-looking statements contained in this Report. In addition, even if our results or operations, financial condition and liquidity, and developments in the industry in which we operate are consistent with the forward-looking statements contained in this Report, those results or developments may not be indicative of results or developments in subsequent periods.

 

iv

 

 

SUMMARY OF RISK FACTORS

 

The following is a summary of the principal risks described below in Part I, Item 1A “Risk Factors” in this Annual Report on Form 10-K. We believe that the risks described in the “Risk Factors” section are material to investors, but other factors not presently known to us or that we currently believe are immaterial may also adversely affect us. The following summary should not be considered an exhaustive summary of the material risks facing us, and it should be read in conjunction with the “Risk Factors” section and the other information contained in this Annual Report on Form 10-K.

 

We are a recently formed blank check company with no operating history and no revenues, and you have no basis on which to evaluate our ability to achieve our business objective.

 

Past performance by the Rice family, Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies and our management team may not be indicative of future performance of an investment in the Company. In addition, none of our officers or directors have served as a sponsor, director or officer of any blank check companies or special purpose acquisition companies in the past.

 

Our public stockholders may not be afforded an opportunity to vote on our proposed business combination, which means we may complete our initial business combination even though a majority of our public stockholders do not support such a combination.

 

In evaluating a prospective target business for our initial business combination, our management may consider the availability of funds from the sale of the forward purchase securities, which may be used as part of the consideration to the sellers in the initial business combination. If Atlas Point Fund decides not to accept our offer to purchase the forward purchase securities, we may decide not to consummate our initial business combination, or if we decide to, we may lack sufficient funds to consummate our initial business combination.

 

Your only opportunity to affect the investment decision regarding a potential business combination may be limited to the exercise of your right to redeem your shares from us for cash.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, our initial stockholders and management team have agreed to vote in favor of such initial business combination, regardless of how our public stockholders vote.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to redeem their shares for cash may make our financial condition unattractive to potential business combination targets, which may make it difficult for us to enter into a business combination with a target.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to exercise redemption rights with respect to a large number of our shares may not allow us to complete the most desirable business combination or optimize our capital structure.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to exercise redemption rights with respect to a large number of our shares could increase the probability that our initial business combination would be unsuccessful and that you would have to wait for liquidation in order to redeem your stock.

 

Our search for a business combination, and any target business with which we ultimately consummate a business combination, may be materially adversely affected by the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and the status of debt and equity markets.

 

We may not be able to complete our initial business combination within the 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering, in which case we would cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up and we would redeem our public shares and liquidate, in which case our public stockholders may receive only their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

v

 

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, our sponsor, directors, officers, advisors and their affiliates may elect to purchase shares or public warrants from public stockholders or public warrantholders, which may influence a vote on a proposed business combination and reduce the public “float” of our Class A common stock.

 

If a stockholder fails to receive notice of our offer to redeem our public shares in connection with our business combination, or fails to comply with the procedures for tendering its shares, such shares may not be redeemed.

 

You will not have any rights or interests in funds from the trust account, except under certain limited circumstances. Therefore, to liquidate your investment, you may be forced to sell your public shares or warrants, potentially at a loss.

 

The NYSE may delist our securities from trading on its exchange, which could limit investors’ ability to make transactions in our securities and subject us to additional trading restrictions.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and we do not conduct redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules, and if you or a “group” of stockholders are deemed to hold in excess of 20% of our Class A common stock, you will lose the ability to redeem all such shares in excess of 20% of our Class A common stock.

 

Because of our limited resources and the significant competition for business combination opportunities, it may be more difficult for us to complete our initial business combination. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may receive only their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

If the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants not being held in the trust account are insufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months, we may be unable to complete our initial business combination, in which case our public stockholders may only receive $10.00 per share, or less than such amount in certain circumstances, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

If the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants not being held in the trust account are insufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months, it could limit the amount available to fund our search for a target business or businesses and complete our initial business combination and we will depend on loans from our sponsor or management team to fund our search for a business combination, to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco and to complete our initial business combination. If we are unable to obtain these loans, we may be unable to complete our initial business combination.

 

Subsequent to our completion of our initial business combination, we may be required to take write-downs or write-offs, restructuring and impairment or other charges that could have a significant negative effect on our financial condition, results of operations and our stock price, which could cause you to lose some or all of your investment.

 

If third parties bring claims against us, the proceeds held in the trust account could be reduced and the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share.

 

vi

 

 

PART I

 

Item 1.Business

 

Overview

 

We are a blank check company incorporated in Delaware for the purpose of effecting a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses, which we refer to throughout this Report as our initial business combination. We are an early stage and emerging growth company and, as such, we are subject to all of the risks associated with early stage and emerging growth companies.

 

In September 2020, our Sponsor paid $25,000 to cover certain of our expenses in exchange for (i) 5,750,100 shares of our Class B common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, and (ii) 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock, par value $0.0001 per share. Also in September 2020, the Sponsor received 5,750,000 Class B Units of Opco (which are profits interest units only). In October 2020, the Sponsor forfeited 90,000 Class B Units of Opco, and 30,000 Class B Units of Opco were issued to each of the independent directors. The Sponsor transferred a corresponding number of shares of Class B common stock to the independent directors. In October 2020, the Company effected a dividend, resulting in an aggregate of (i) 6,181,350 shares of our Class B common stock, and (ii) 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock outstanding. All shares and associated amounts have been retroactively restated to reflect the dividend. Upon a liquidation of Opco, distributions generally will be made to the holders of Opco Units on a pro rata basis, subject to certain limitations with respect to the Class B Units of Opco, including that, prior to the completion of the initial business combination, such Class B Units will not be entitled to participate in a liquidating distribution.

 

On October 26, 2020, the Company consummated its initial public offering of 23,725,000 units, including 2,225,000 units that were issued pursuant to the underwriters’ partial exercise of their over-allotment option, at $10.00 per unit, generating gross proceeds of approximately $237.3 million, and incurring offering costs of approximately $12.5 million, inclusive of $7.6 million in deferred underwriting commissions. Of the 23,725,000 units sold, affiliates of our Sponsor and Atlas Point Fund had purchased 1,980,000 units (the “Affiliated Units”) and 2,128,500 units (the “Atlas Units”), respectively, at the initial public offering price. The underwriters did not receive any underwriting discounts or commissions on the 1,980,000 Affiliated Units. Each unit consists of one share of Class A common stock and one-half of one redeemable warrant (each, a “Public Warrant”). Each whole Public Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one share of our Class A common stock at a price of $11.50 per share, subject to adjustment.

 

Simultaneously with the closing of our initial public offering, we consummated the private placement (“Private Placement”) of 6,771,000 warrants (each, a “Private Placement Warrant” and collectively, the “Private Placement Warrants”) to the Sponsor and Atlas Point Fund, at a price of $1.00 per Private Placement Warrant, generating gross proceeds of approximately $6.8 million. Each Private Placement Warrant is exercisable to purchase one share of our Class A common stock or, in certain circumstances, one Class A Unit of Opco together with a corresponding number of shares of our non-economic Class B common stock, subject to certain adjustments.

 

Market Opportunity

 

We intend to focus our search for a target business in the broadly defined energy transition or sustainability arena. Specifically, we plan to concentrate our search on supply-side solutions and innovations that enable the economy to decarbonize in sectors that include renewable fuels, sustainable chemical production and feedstocks, carbon capture, utilization and storage technology and equipment, applications, infrastructure and technology focused on reducing the carbon intensity of fuels, energy production methods, and industrial processes. We believe the recent capital market and investment activity directed at energy transition has focused on end-market applications such as vehicle electrification, energy efficiency for consumers and sustainable and eco-conscious products. These trends are important to the overall success of the energy transition; however, their adoption and commercial development require more focus on the production and supply of clean fuels, sustainable energy and industrial applications and infrastructure. We believe traditional renewable electricity generation from wind and solar will continue growing market share. These sources are ultimately limited by geography and intermittency, and will not solve the renewable energy needs of several sub-sectors of the economy less likely to electrify. Our focus on renewable fuels and sustainable chemical production will serve to bolster and complement the rapid development of wind and solar. Our management’s history and track-record of owning and building successful energy production companies provides us with unique and differentiated insights into how the traditional fossil fuel-based energy value chain is changing to accommodate for a lower carbon footprint and a more sustainable future.

 

1

 

 

The potential growth in the production and consumption of sustainable fuels, including renewable natural gas (“RNG”), blue and green hydrogen, renewable diesel, renewable jet fuel, low or zero-carbon synthetic fuels and fuels that incorporate carbon capture, utilization and storage represents a significant market opportunity. We believe the widespread adoption of renewable fuels by major sectors of the economy such as freight, air and marine transportation, residential and industrial heating and power generation and energy storage will create a profound disruption resulting in a very large addressable market. The carbon intensity of energy and industrial production methods is one of the main drivers for the adoption of renewable and low-carbon fuels. For example, traditional cement and steel production is very energy intensive and pollutant and can be decarbonized using clean fuels in heat generation and carbon capture, utilization and storage to reduce process-related emissions.

 

In addition, the infrastructure, industrial and technological requirements to increase the market penetration of sustainable fuels also present tremendous opportunity. Equipment, applications and installations such as anaerobic digesters that produce RNG, biodiesel plants that manufacture renewable diesel and electrolyzers that generate clean hydrogen need to be scaled up to handle increased demand and compete in markets including and beyond the transportation sector.

 

Large publicly traded companies in the energy, utility and waste management sectors have made significant investments in renewable energy production and infrastructure projects to meet their own emission reduction targets and adapt to changing regulatory frameworks and customer preferences. The advent of RNG, renewable diesel and blue and green hydrogen and technologies on carbon capture, utilization and storage will further increase the range of applications and use cases for renewable and zero-emission fuels over the longer term.

 

Furthermore, sustainable chemicals and materials also represent large addressable markets that displace carbon intensive fossil fuel-based products with lower emission sustainable alternatives. Petrochemicals can be replaced using biomass and recycled waste products as feedstock. The production of building materials can be decarbonized using recycling technologies and novel circular production methods that convert traditional waste products into valuable energy and/or feedstock sources.

 

Business Strategy

 

Our acquisition and value creation strategy is to identify, acquire and, after our initial business combination, build a company whose principal effort is developing and advancing the objectives of global decarbonization while generating attractive risk adjusted returns for our shareholders. Our acquisition strategy leverages our management team’s and Rice Investment Group’s network of potential proprietary and public transaction sources where we believe a combination of our relationships, knowledge and experience in the renewable and energy industries could effect a positive transformation or augmentation of existing businesses or properties. Our goal is to build a focused business with multiple competitive advantages that have the potential to improve the target business’s overall value proposition. We plan to utilize the network and industry experience of our management team and Rice Investment Group in seeking an initial business combination and employing our acquisition strategy. Over the course of their careers, the members of our management team and their affiliates, including Rice Investment Group, have developed a broad network of contacts and corporate relationships that we believe will serve as a useful source of acquisition opportunities. In addition to industry and lending community relationships, we plan to leverage relationships with management teams of public and private companies, investment bankers, restructuring advisers, attorneys and accountants, which we believe should provide us with a number of business combination opportunities.

 

Our management team and board of directors have an extensive network of contacts that they will leverage in their efforts in identifying an attractive target with operations in a Sustainability related sector. We believe this existing network and long history of working together are advantages in sourcing potential business combination targets. We also believe that our management team’s reputation, experience and track record will make us a preferred counterparty for public and private companies with operations in a Sustainability related sector. We also believe many privately held and publicly traded companies consider the Rice Investment Group to be a trustworthy partner and recognize the firm’s ability to support value and enhance returns.

 

2

 

 

Acquisition Criteria

 

Consistent with our business strategy, we have identified the following general criteria and guidelines that we believe are important in evaluating prospective targets for our initial business combination. We use these criteria and guidelines in evaluating acquisition opportunities, but we may decide to enter into our initial business combination with a target that does not meet these criteria and guidelines. We intend to acquire target businesses that we believe:

 

operate in high growth, large addressable markets with favorable long-term market dynamics;

 

display differentiated business attributes and/or product offerings that provide us confidence on the long-term prospects and profitability of the company;

 

are fundamentally sound and can benefit from a partnership with us by leveraging the operational, transactional, financial, managerial and investment experience of our management team and Rice Investment Group;

 

can utilize the extensive networks and insights that our management team and Rice Investment Group have built in the renewable and energy industry;

 

are at an inflection point, such as requiring additional management expertise, are able to innovate through new operational techniques, or where we believe we can drive improved financial performance;

 

exhibit unrecognized value or other characteristics, desirable returns on capital, and a need for capital to achieve the company’s growth strategy, that we believe have been misevaluated by the marketplace based on our analysis and due diligence review; and

 

will offer an attractive risk-adjusted return for our stockholders.

 

Potential upside from growth in the target business and an improved capital structure will be weighed against any identified downside risks.

 

These criteria are not intended to be exhaustive. Any evaluation relating to the merits of a particular initial business combination may be based, to the extent relevant, on these general guidelines as well as other considerations, factors and criteria that our management may deem relevant. In the event that we decide to enter into our initial business combination with a target business that does not meet the above criteria and guidelines, we will disclose that the target business does not meet the above criteria in our stockholder communications related to our initial business combination, which, as discussed in this Report, would be in the form of proxy solicitation or tender offer materials that we would file with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”).

 

Initial Business Combination

 

The NYSE rules require that we must complete one or more business combinations having an aggregate fair market value of at least 80% of the net assets held in trust (net of amounts disbursed to management for working capital purposes and excluding the amount of any deferred underwriting discount held in trust) at the time of the agreement to enter into the initial business combination. Our board will make the determination as to the fair market value of a target business or businesses. If our board is not able to independently determine the fair market value of a target business or businesses, we will obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm which is a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority Inc., or FINRA, or an independent accounting firm with respect to the satisfaction of such criteria. While we consider it unlikely that our board will not be able to make an independent determination of the fair market value of a target business or businesses, it may be unable to do so if the board is less familiar or experienced with the target company’s business or there is a significant amount of uncertainty as to the value of the company’s assets or prospects.

 

3

 

 

We may pursue an acquisition opportunity jointly with our sponsor, or one or more affiliates, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies, which we refer to as an “Affiliated Joint Acquisition.” Any such parties may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the acquisition by issuing to such parties a class of equity or equity-linked securities. Our sponsor and its affiliates have no obligation to make any such investment, and may compete with us for potential business combinations. Any such issuance of equity or equity-linked securities would, on a fully diluted basis, reduce the percentage ownership of our then-existing stockholders. Notwithstanding the foregoing, pursuant to the anti-dilution provisions of our founder shares, issuances or deemed issuances of our Class A common stock or equity-linked securities would result in an adjustment to the number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco will convert (unless the holders of a majority of the outstanding founder shares agree to waive such adjustment with respect to any such issuance or deemed issuance) so that, after all founder shares have been exchanged for shares of our Class A common stock, the aggregate number of shares of our Class A common stock received by holders in exchange for founder shares would equal 20% of the sum of the total outstanding shares of common stock following the completion of our initial public offering plus all shares of our Class A common stock and equity-linked securities issued or deemed issued in connection with the business combination (excluding the forward purchase securities and any shares or equity-linked securities issued, or to be issued, to any seller in the business combination and excluding the sponsor shares).

 

We anticipate structuring our initial business combination either (i) in such a way so that we will control 100% of the equity interests or assets of the target business or businesses or (ii) in such a way so that we control less than 100% of such interests or assets of the target business in order to meet certain objectives of the target management team or stockholders or for other reasons, including an Affiliated Joint Acquisition as described above. However, we will only complete a business combination if we control 50% or more of the outstanding voting securities of the target or otherwise are not required to register as an investment company under the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended (the “Investment Company Act”). Even if we control 50% or more of the voting securities of the target, our stockholders prior to the business combination may collectively own a minority interest in the post-transaction company, depending on valuations ascribed to the target and us in the business combination transaction. For example, we could pursue a transaction in which we issue a substantial number of new shares in exchange for all of the outstanding capital stock, shares or other equity interests of a target. In this case, we would acquire a 100% controlling interest in the target. However, as a result of the issuance of a substantial number of new shares, our stockholders immediately prior to our initial business combination could own less than a majority of our outstanding shares subsequent to our initial business combination. If we control less than 100% of the equity interests or assets of a target business or businesses, the portion of such business or businesses that is controlled is what will be valued for purposes of the 80% of net assets test. If the business combination involves more than one target business, the 80% of net assets test will be based on the aggregate value of all of the transactions and we will treat the target businesses together as the initial business combination for seeking stockholder approval or for purposes of a tender offer, as applicable.

 

Our Acquisition Process

 

In evaluating a prospective target business, we expect to conduct a thorough due diligence review that will encompass, among other things, meetings with incumbent management and employees, document reviews, inspection of facilities, as well as a review of financial and other information that will be made available to us. We will also utilize our transactional, financial, managerial and investment experience.

 

We are not prohibited from pursuing an initial business combination with or from a company that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, including a portfolio company of Rice Investment Group, or from entering into an agreement with our sponsor, officers or directors or their affiliates with respect to the operation of any business we acquire in connection with the initial business combination. In the event we seek to complete our initial business combination with a business combination target that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, we, or a committee of independent directors, would obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm which is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm that such initial business combination is fair to our company from a financial point of view.

 

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Members of our management team and our independent directors directly or indirectly own founder shares, sponsor shares and/or private placement warrants and, accordingly, may have a conflict of interest in determining whether a particular target business is an appropriate business with which to effectuate our initial business combination. Further, each of our officers and directors may have a conflict of interest with respect to evaluating a particular business combination if the retention or resignation of any such officers and directors was included by a target business as a condition to any agreement with respect to our initial business combination.

 

Each of our officers and directors presently has, and any of them in the future may have additional, fiduciary or contractual obligations to other entities pursuant to which such officer or director is or will be required to present a business combination opportunity. Accordingly, if any of our officers or directors becomes aware of a business combination opportunity which is suitable for an entity to which he or she has then-current fiduciary or contractual obligations, he or she will honor his or her fiduciary or contractual obligations to present such opportunity to such other entity. We do not believe, however, that the fiduciary duties or contractual obligations of our officers or directors will materially affect our ability to complete our business combination. In addition, we may pursue an Affiliated Joint Acquisition opportunity with an entity to which an officer or director has a fiduciary or contractual obligation. Any such entity may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the acquisition by issuing to such entity a class of equity or equity-linked securities. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that we renounce our interest in any corporate opportunity offered to any director or officer unless such opportunity is expressly offered to such person solely in his or her capacity as a director or officer of our company and such opportunity is one we are legally and contractually permitted to undertake and would otherwise be reasonable for us to pursue.

 

In addition, members of our sponsor, as well as Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies may sponsor other blank check companies similar to ours during the period in which we are seeking an initial business combination, and members of our management team may participate in such blank check companies. In particular, an affiliate of Rice Investment Group has formed Rice Acquisition Corp. II (“Rice II”), a blank check company like our company that was formed to consummate an initial business combination. Like us, Rice II intends to focus its search for a target business in the energy transition or sustainability arena. As of the date of this filing, Rice II has not completed its initial public offering and does not have a class of securities registered under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”). Any such companies, including Rice II, may present additional conflicts of interest in pursuing an acquisition target, particularly in the event there is overlap among the management teams. Mr. Rice also serves as a director and officer of Rice II, and Mr. Derham also serves as an officer and is a director nominee of Rice II. However, we do not believe that any such potential conflicts would materially affect our ability to complete our initial business combination. Each of Mr. Rice and Mr. Derham has agreed not to become an officer or director of any other special purpose acquisition company with a class of securities registered under the Exchange Act, until we have entered into a definitive agreement regarding our initial business combination or we have failed to complete our initial business combination within 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering. Neither Mr. Rice nor Mr. Derham has been involved with any blank check companies prior to our company.

 

We have filed a Registration Statement on Form 8-A with the SEC to voluntarily register our securities under Section 12 of the Exchange Act. As a result, we are subject to the rules and regulations promulgated under the Exchange Act. We have no current intention of filing a Form 15 to suspend our reporting or other obligations under the Exchange Act prior or subsequent to the consummation of our initial business combination.

 

Our Management Team

 

Members of our management team are not obligated to devote any specific number of hours to our matters but they intend to devote as much of their time as they deem necessary to our affairs until we have completed our initial business combination. The amount of time that any members of our management team will devote in any time period will vary based on whether a target business has been selected for our initial business combination and the current stage of the business combination process.

 

We believe our management team’s operating and transaction experience and relationships with companies will provide us with a substantial number of potential business combination targets. Over the course of their careers, the members of our management team have developed a broad network of contacts and corporate relationships around the world. This network has grown through the activities of our management team sourcing, acquiring and financing businesses, our management team’s relationships with sellers, financing sources and target management teams and the experience of our management team in executing transactions under varying economic and financial market conditions. See the section of this Report entitled “Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance” for a more complete description of our management team’s experience.

 

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Status as a Public Company

 

We believe our structure will make us an attractive business combination partner to target businesses. As an existing public company, we offer a target business an alternative to the traditional initial public offering through a merger or other business combination with us. In a business combination transaction with us, the owners of the target business may, for example, exchange their shares of stock, shares or other equity interests in the target business for shares of our Class A common stock (or shares of a new holding company), Opco Units (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) or for a combination of shares of our Class A common stock, Opco Units (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) and cash, allowing us to tailor the consideration to the specific needs of the sellers. Although there are various costs and obligations associated with being a public company, we believe target businesses will find this method a more certain and cost effective method to becoming a public company than the typical initial public offering. The typical initial public offering process takes a significantly longer period of time than the typical business combination transaction process, and there are significant expenses in the initial public offering process, including underwriting discounts and commissions, that may not be present to the same extent in connection with a business combination with us.

 

Furthermore, once a proposed business combination is completed, the target business will have effectively become public, whereas an initial public offering is always subject to the underwriters’ ability to complete the offering, as well as general market conditions, which could delay or prevent the offering from occurring or could have negative valuation consequences. Once public, we believe the target business would then have greater access to capital, an additional means of providing management incentives consistent with stockholders’ interests and the ability to use its equity as currency for acquisitions. Being a public company can offer further benefits by augmenting a company’s profile among potential new customers and vendors and aid in attracting talented employees.

 

While we believe that our structure and our management team’s backgrounds make us an attractive business partner, some potential target businesses may view our status as a blank check company, such as our lack of an operating history and our ability to seek stockholder approval of any proposed initial business combination, negatively.

 

We are an “emerging growth company,” as defined in Section 2(a) of the Securities Act, as modified by the JOBS Act. As such, we are eligible to take advantage of certain exemptions from various reporting requirements that are applicable to other public companies that are not “emerging growth companies” including, but not limited to, not being required to comply with the auditor attestation requirements of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, reduced disclosure obligations regarding executive compensation in our periodic reports and proxy statements, and exemptions from the requirements of holding a non-binding advisory vote on executive compensation and stockholder approval of any golden parachute payments not previously approved. If some investors find our securities less attractive as a result, there may be a less active trading market for our securities and the prices of our securities may be more volatile.

 

In addition, Section 107 of the JOBS Act also provides that an “emerging growth company” can take advantage of the extended transition period provided in Section 7(a)(2)(B) of the Securities Act for complying with new or revised accounting standards. In other words, an “emerging growth company” can delay the adoption of certain accounting standards until those standards would otherwise apply to private companies. We intend to take advantage of the benefits of this extended transition period.

 

We will remain an emerging growth company until the earlier of (1) the last day of the fiscal year (a) following the fifth anniversary of the completion of our initial public offering, (b) in which we have total annual gross revenue of at least $1.07 billion (as adjusted for inflation pursuant to SEC rules from time to time), or (c) in which we are deemed to be a large accelerated filer, which means the market value of our Class A common stock that is held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the prior June 30th, and (2) the date on which we have issued more than $1.0 billion in non-convertible debt securities during the prior three-year period.

 

Additionally, we are a “smaller reporting company” as defined in Item 10(0(1) of Regulation S-K. Smaller reporting companies may take advantage of certain reduced disclosure obligations, including, among other things, providing only two years of audited financial statements. We will remain a smaller reporting company until the last day of the fiscal year in which (i) the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $250 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter or (ii) our annual revenues exceeded $100 million during such completed fiscal year and the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter.

 

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Financial Position

 

Upon the closing of our initial public offering, approximately $237.3 million of the net proceeds were placed in a trust account (“Trust Account”) located in the United States with Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company acting as trustee, and invested only in U.S. “government securities” within the meaning of Section 2(a)(16) of the Investment Company Act having a maturity of 185 days or less or in money market funds meeting certain conditions under Rule 2a-7 promulgated under the Investment Company Act which invest only in direct U.S. government treasury obligations, as determined by us, until the earlier of: (i) the completion of a Business Combination and (ii) the distribution of the Trust Account. Because we are able to complete our business combination using our cash, debt or equity securities, or a combination of the foregoing, we have the flexibility to use the most efficient combination that will allow us to tailor the consideration to be paid to the target business to fit its needs and desires. However, we have not taken any steps to secure third party financing and there can be no assurance it will be available to us.

 

Effecting Our Initial Business Combination

 

We are not presently engaged in, and we will not engage in, any operations for an indefinite period of time following our initial public offering. We intend to effectuate our initial business combination using cash from the proceeds of our initial public offering and the private placement warrants and forward purchase securities, our capital stock, debt or a combination of the foregoing. We may seek to complete our initial business combination with a company or business that may be financially unstable or in its early stages of development or growth, which would subject us to the numerous risks inherent in such companies and businesses. Although our management will assess the risks inherent in a particular target business with which we may combine, we cannot assure you that this assessment will result in our identifying all risks that a target business may encounter. Furthermore, some of those risks may be outside of our control, meaning that we can do nothing to control or reduce the chances that those risks will adversely affect a target business.

 

If our initial business combination is paid for using equity or debt securities, or not all of the funds released from the trust account are used for payment of the consideration in connection with our business combination or used for redemptions of purchases of our Class A common stock, we may apply the balance of the cash released to us from the trust account for general corporate purposes, including for maintenance or expansion of operations of the post-transaction company, the payment of principal or interest due on indebtedness incurred in completing our initial business combination, to fund the purchase of other companies or for working capital.

 

We may need to obtain additional financing to complete our initial business combination, either because the transaction requires more cash than is available from the proceeds held in our trust account or because we become obligated to redeem a significant number of our public shares upon completion of the business combination, or if Atlas Point Fund decides not to exercise its right to purchase all of the forward purchase securities, in which case we may issue additional securities or incur debt in connection with such business combination. In the case of an initial business combination funded with assets other than the trust account assets, our tender offer documents or proxy materials disclosing the business combination would disclose the terms of the financing and, only if required by applicable law, we would seek stockholder approval of such financing. There are no prohibitions on our ability to issue securities or incur debt in connection with our initial business combination. We are not currently a party to any arrangement or understanding with any third party with respect to raising any additional funds through the sale of securities, the incurrence of debt or otherwise.

 

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Sources of Target Businesses

 

Target businesses may be brought to our attention by such unaffiliated sources as a result of being solicited by us through calls or mailings. These sources may also introduce us to target businesses in which they think we may be interested on an unsolicited basis, since many of these sources will have read this Report and know what types of businesses we are targeting. Our officers and directors, as well as their affiliates, may also bring to our attention target business candidates that they become aware of through their business contacts as a result of formal or informal inquiries or discussions they may have, as well as attending trade shows or conventions. In addition, we expect to receive a number of proprietary deal flow opportunities that would not otherwise necessarily be available to us as a result of the track record and business relationships of our officers and directors. While we do not presently anticipate engaging the services of professional firms or other individuals that specialize in business acquisitions on any formal basis, we may engage these firms or other individuals in the future, in which event we may pay a finder’s fee, consulting fee or other compensation to be determined in an arm’s length negotiation based on the terms of the transaction. We will engage a finder only to the extent our management determines that the use of a finder may bring opportunities to us that may not otherwise be available to us or if finders approach us on an unsolicited basis with a potential transaction that our management determines is in our best interest to pursue. Payment of a finder’s fee is customarily tied to completion of a transaction, in which case any such fee will be paid out of the funds held in the trust account. We have agreed to pay our sponsor a total of $10,000 per month for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services and to reimburse our sponsor for any out-of-pocket expenses related to identifying, investigating and completing an initial business combination. Some of our officers and directors may enter into employment or consulting agreements with the post-transaction company following our initial business combination. The presence or absence of any such fees or arrangements will not be used as a criterion in our selection process of an acquisition candidate.

 

We are not prohibited from pursuing an initial business combination with or from a company that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, including a portfolio company of Rice Investment Group, or making the acquisition through a joint venture or other form of shared ownership with our sponsor, officers or directors or their affiliates, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies. We are also not prohibited from entering into an agreement with our sponsor, officers or directors or their affiliates with respect to the operation of any business we acquire in connection with the initial business combination. In the event we seek to complete our initial business combination with a business combination target that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, we, or a committee of independent directors, would obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm which is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm that such initial business combination is fair to our company from a financial point of view. We are not required to obtain such an opinion in any other context.

 

As more fully discussed in the section of this Report entitled “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence,” if any of our officers or directors becomes aware of a business combination opportunity that falls within the line of business of any entity to which he or she has pre-existing fiduciary or contractual obligations, he or she may be required to present such business combination opportunity to such entity prior to presenting such business combination opportunity to us. Our officers and directors currently have certain relevant fiduciary duties or contractual obligations that may take priority over their duties to us. We may pursue an Affiliated Joint Acquisition opportunity with an entity to which an officer or director has a fiduciary or contractual obligation. Any such entity may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the acquisition by issuing to such entity a class of equity or equity-linked securities.

 

Selection of a Target Business and Structuring of our Initial Business Combination

 

The NYSE rules require that our initial business combination must occur with one or more target businesses that together have an aggregate fair market value of at least 80% of the net assets held in trust (net of amounts disbursed to management for working capital purposes and excluding the amount of any deferred underwriting discount held in trust) at the time of the agreement to enter into the initial business combination. The fair market value of the target or targets will be determined by our board of directors based upon one or more standards generally accepted by the financial community, such as discounted cash flow valuation or value of comparable businesses. If our board is not able to independently determine the fair market value of the target business or businesses, we will obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm that is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm with respect to the satisfaction of such criteria. We do not intend to purchase multiple businesses in unrelated industries in conjunction with our initial business combination. Subject to this requirement, our management will have virtually unrestricted flexibility in identifying and selecting one or more prospective target businesses, although we will not be permitted to effectuate our initial business combination with another blank check company or a similar company with nominal operations.

 

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In any case, we will only complete an initial business combination in which we control 50% or more of the outstanding voting securities of the target or otherwise are not required to register as an investment company under the Investment Company Act. If we control less than 100% of the equity interests or assets of a target business or businesses, the portion of such business or businesses that are controlled is what will be valued for purposes of the NYSE’s 80% of net assets test. There is no basis for investors to evaluate the possible merits or risks of any target business with which we may ultimately complete our business combination.

 

To the extent we effect our business combination with a company or business that may be financially unstable or in its early stages of development or growth, we may be affected by numerous risks inherent in such company or business. Although our management will endeavor to evaluate the risks inherent in a particular target business, we cannot assure you that we will properly ascertain or assess all significant risk factors.

 

In evaluating a prospective target business, we expect to conduct a thorough due diligence review, which may encompass, among other things, meetings with incumbent management and employees, document reviews, interviews of customers and suppliers, inspection of facilities, as applicable, as well as a review of financial, operational, legal and other information which will be made available to us. If we determine to move forward with a particular target, we will proceed to structure and negotiate the terms of the business combination transaction.

 

Any costs incurred with respect to the identification and evaluation of, and negotiation with, a prospective target business with which our business combination is not ultimately completed will result in our incurring losses and will reduce the funds we can use to complete another business combination. The Company will not pay any consulting fees to members of our management team, or any of their respective affiliates, for services rendered to or in connection with our initial business combination.

 

Redemption Rights for Public Stockholders upon Completion of our Initial Business Combination

 

We will provide our public stockholders with the opportunity to redeem all or a portion of their shares of our Class A common stock upon the completion of our initial business combination at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account calculated as of two business days prior to the consummation of the initial business combination including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco, divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.), subject to the limitations described herein. The amount in the trust account is initially anticipated to be approximately $10.00 per public share. The per-share amount we will distribute to investors who properly redeem their shares will not be reduced by the deferred underwriting discounts and commissions we will pay to the underwriters. Pursuant to the Opco LLC Agreement and a letter agreement that our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers and directors have entered into with us, they have agreed that any founder shares and sponsor shares held by them will not be entitled to redemption rights, and they will waive any such redemption rights for any public shares held by them, in connection with the completion of our business combination. In connection with the redemption of any public shares, a corresponding number of Class A Units of Opco held by us will also be redeemed.

 

Limitations on Redemptions

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that in no event will we redeem our public shares in an amount that would cause our net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001 upon consummation of our initial business combination and after payment of underwriters’ fees and commissions (so that we are not subject to the SEC’s “penny stock” rules). However, the proposed business combination may require (i) cash consideration to be paid to the target or its owners, (ii) cash to be transferred to the target for working capital or other general corporate purposes or (iii) the retention of cash to satisfy other conditions in accordance with the terms of the proposed business combination. In the event the aggregate cash consideration we would be required to pay for all shares of our Class A common stock that are validly submitted for redemption plus any amount required to satisfy cash conditions pursuant to the terms of the proposed business combination exceed the aggregate amount of cash available to us, we will not complete the business combination or redeem any shares, and all shares of our Class A common stock submitted for redemption will be returned to the holders thereof.

 

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Manner of Conducting Redemptions

 

We will provide our public stockholders with the opportunity to redeem all or a portion of their shares of our Class A common stock upon the completion of our initial business combination either (i) in connection with a stockholder meeting called to approve the business combination or (ii) by means of a tender offer. The decision as to whether we will seek stockholder approval of a proposed business combination or conduct a tender offer will be made by us, solely in our discretion, and will be based on a variety of factors such as the timing of the transaction and whether the terms of the transaction would require us to seek stockholder approval under applicable law or stock exchange listing requirement. Asset acquisitions and stock purchases would not typically require stockholder approval while direct mergers with our company where we do not survive and any transactions where we issue more than 20% of our outstanding common stock or seek to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation would require stockholder approval. If we structure a business combination transaction with a target business in a manner that requires stockholder approval, we will not have discretion as to whether to seek a stockholder vote to approve the proposed business combination. We currently intend to conduct redemptions in connection with a stockholder vote unless stockholder approval is not required by applicable law or stock exchange listing requirement and we choose to conduct redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules of the SEC for business or other legal reasons.

 

If we hold a stockholder vote to approve our initial business combination, we will, pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation:

 

conduct the redemptions in conjunction with a proxy solicitation pursuant to Regulation 14A of the Exchange Act, which regulates the solicitation of proxies, and not pursuant to the tender offer rules, and

 

file proxy materials with the SEC.

 

In the event that we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, we will distribute proxy materials and, in connection therewith, provide our public stockholders with the redemption rights described above upon completion of the initial business combination.

 

If we seek stockholder approval, we will complete our initial business combination only if a majority of the outstanding shares of common stock voted are voted in favor of the business combination. A quorum for such meeting will consist of the holders present in person or by proxy of shares of outstanding capital stock of the company representing a majority of the voting power of all outstanding shares of capital stock of the company entitled to vote at such meeting. Our initial stockholders will count toward this quorum and have agreed to vote their founder shares and any public shares in favor of our initial business combination. For purposes of seeking approval of the majority of our outstanding shares of common stock voted, non-votes will have no effect on the approval of our initial business combination once a quorum is obtained. As a result, in addition to our initial stockholders’ founder shares and sponsor shares, we would need 8,896,875, or 37.5%, of the 23,725,000 public shares sold in our initial public offering to be voted in favor of a transaction (assuming all outstanding shares are voted) in order to have our initial business combination approved. We intend to give approximately 30 days (but not less than 10 days nor more than 60 days) prior written notice of any such meeting, if required, at which a vote shall be taken to approve our initial business combination. These quorum and voting thresholds, and the voting agreements of our initial stockholders, may make it more likely that we will consummate our initial business combination. Each public stockholder may elect to redeem its public shares irrespective of whether it votes for or against the proposed transaction. In addition, pursuant to the Opco LLC Agreement and a letter agreement that our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers and directors have entered into with us, they have agreed that any founder shares and sponsor shares held by them will not be entitled to redemption rights, and they will waive any such redemption rights for any public shares held by them, in connection with the completion of a business combination.

 

If we conduct redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules of the SEC, we will, pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation:

 

conduct the redemptions pursuant to Rule 13e-4 and Regulation 14E of the Exchange Act, which regulate issuer tender offers, and

 

file tender offer documents with the SEC prior to completing our initial business combination which contain substantially the same financial and other information about the initial business combination and the redemption rights as is required under Regulation 14A of the Exchange Act, which regulates the solicitation of proxies. Although we are not required to do so, we currently intend to comply with the substantive and procedural requirements of Regulation 14A in connection with any stockholder vote even if we are not able to maintain our NYSE listing or Exchange Act registration.

 

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Upon the public announcement of our business combination, we or our sponsor will terminate any plan established in accordance with Rule 10b5-1 to purchase shares of our Class A common stock in the open market if we elect to redeem our public shares through a tender offer, to comply with Rule 14e-5 under the Exchange Act.

 

In the event we conduct redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules, our offer to redeem will remain open for at least 20 business days, in accordance with Rule 14e-1(a) under the Exchange Act, and we will not be permitted to complete our initial business combination until the expiration of the tender offer period. In addition, the tender offer will be conditioned on public stockholders not tendering more than the number of public shares we are permitted to redeem. If public stockholders tender more shares than we have offered to purchase, we will withdraw the tender offer and not complete the initial business combination.

 

Limitation on Redemption upon Completion of our Initial Business Combination if we Seek Stockholder Approval

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and we do not conduct redemptions in connection with our business combination pursuant to the tender offer rules, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that a public stockholder, together with any affiliate of such stockholder or any other person with whom such stockholder is acting in concert or as a “group” (as defined under Section 13 of the Exchange Act), will be restricted from seeking redemption rights with respect to more than an aggregate of 20% of the shares sold in our initial public offering, which we refer to as the “Excess Shares.” We believe this restriction will discourage stockholders from accumulating large blocks of shares, and subsequent attempts by such holders to use their ability to exercise their redemption rights against a proposed business combination as a means to force us or our management to purchase their shares at a significant premium to the then-current market price or on other undesirable terms. Absent this provision, a public stockholder holding more than an aggregate of 20% of the shares sold in our initial public offering could threaten to exercise its redemption rights if such holder’s shares are not purchased by us, our sponsor or our management at a premium to the then-current market price or on other undesirable terms. By limiting our stockholders’ ability to redeem no more than 20% of the shares sold in our initial public offering without our prior consent, we believe we will limit the ability of a small group of stockholders to unreasonably attempt to block our ability to complete our business combination, particularly in connection with a business combination with a target that requires as a closing condition that we have a minimum net worth or a certain amount of cash. However, we would not be restricting our stockholders’ ability to vote all of their shares (including Excess Shares) for or against our business combination.

 

Tendering Stock Certificates in Connection with a Tender Offer or Redemption Rights

 

Public stockholders seeking to exercise their redemption rights, whether they are record holders or hold their shares in “street name,” are required to either tender their certificates to our transfer agent prior to the date set forth in the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) mailed to such holders, or up to two business days prior to the initially scheduled vote on the proposal to approve the business combination in the event we distribute proxy materials, or to deliver their shares to the transfer agent electronically using the Depository Trust Company’s DWAC (Deposit/Withdrawal At Custodian) System, at the holder’s option. The proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) that we will furnish to holders of our public shares in connection with our initial business combination will indicate the applicable delivery requirements. Accordingly, a public stockholder would have from the time we send out our tender offer materials until the close of the tender offer period, or up to two days prior to the vote on the business combination if we distribute proxy materials, as applicable, to tender its shares if it wishes to seek to exercise its redemption rights. Given the relatively short period in which to exercise redemption rights, it is advisable for stockholders to use electronic delivery of their public shares.

 

There is a nominal cost associated with the above-referenced tendering process and the act of certificating the shares or delivering them through the DWAC System. The transfer agent will typically charge the tendering broker a fee of approximately $80.00 and it would be up to the broker whether or not to pass this cost on to the redeeming holder. However, this fee would be incurred regardless of whether or not we require holders seeking to exercise redemption rights to tender their shares. The need to deliver shares is a requirement of exercising redemption rights regardless of the timing of when such delivery must be effectuated.

 

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The foregoing is different from the procedures used by many blank check companies. In order to perfect redemption rights in connection with their business combinations, many blank check companies would distribute proxy materials for the stockholders’ vote on an initial business combination, and a holder could simply vote against a proposed business combination and check a box on the proxy card indicating such holder was seeking to exercise his or her redemption rights. After the business combination was approved, the company would contact such stockholder to arrange for him or her to deliver his or her certificate to verify ownership. As a result, the stockholder then had an “option window” after the completion of the business combination during which he or she could monitor the price of the company’s stock in the market. If the price rose above the redemption price, he or she could sell his or her shares in the open market before actually delivering his or her shares to the company for cancellation. As a result, the redemption rights, to which stockholders were aware they needed to commit before the stockholder meeting, would become “option” rights surviving past the completion of the business combination until the redeeming holder delivered its certificate. The requirement for physical or electronic delivery prior to the meeting ensures that a redeeming holder’s election to redeem is irrevocable once the business combination is approved.

 

Any request to redeem such shares, once made, may be withdrawn at any time up to the date set forth in the tender offer materials or the date of the stockholder meeting set forth in our proxy materials, as applicable. Furthermore, if a holder of a public share delivered its certificate in connection with an election of redemption rights and subsequently decides prior to the applicable date not to elect to exercise such rights, such holder may simply request that the transfer agent return the certificate (physically or electronically). It is anticipated that the funds to be distributed to holders of our public shares electing to redeem their shares will be distributed promptly after the completion of our business combination.

 

If our initial business combination is not approved or completed for any reason, then our public stockholders who elected to exercise their redemption rights would not be entitled to redeem their shares for the applicable pro rata share of the trust account. In such case, we will promptly return any certificates delivered by public holders who elected to redeem their shares.

 

If our initial proposed business combination is not completed, we may continue to try to complete a business combination with a different target until 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering.

 

Redemption of Public Shares and Liquidation if no Initial Business Combination

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that we will have only 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering to complete our initial business combination. If we do not complete our business combination within such 24-month period, we will: (i) cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up, (ii) as promptly as reasonably possible but not more than ten business days thereafter, redeem the public shares, at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco (less up to $100,000 of interest to pay dissolution expenses), divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.), which redemption will completely extinguish public stockholders’ rights as stockholders (including the right to receive further liquidating distributions, if any), subject to applicable law, and (iii) as promptly as reasonably possible following such redemption, subject to the approval of our remaining stockholders and our board of directors, dissolve and liquidate, subject in each case to our obligations under Delaware law to provide for claims of creditors and the requirements of other applicable law. There will be no redemption rights or liquidating distributions with respect to our warrants, which will expire worthless if we fail to complete our business combination within the 24-month time period.

 

Pursuant to the Opco LLC Agreement and a letter agreement that our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers and directors have entered into with us, they have agreed that any founder shares held by them are subject to forfeiture, and thus will not be entitled to liquidating distributions from the trust account, and they will waive any such rights to liquidating distributions for any founder shares if we fail to complete our initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering. However, if our sponsor, officers or directors acquire public shares in or after our initial public offering, they will be entitled to liquidating distributions from the trust account with respect to such public shares and the sponsor shares, if we fail to complete our initial business combination within the allotted 24-month time period.

 

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Our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers, and directors have agreed, pursuant to a written agreement with us, that they will not propose any amendment to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that would affect the substance or timing of our obligation to redeem 100% of our public shares if we have not consummated an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, unless we provide our public stockholders with the opportunity to redeem their shares of our Class A common stock upon approval of any such amendment at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account, including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco, divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.). However, we may not redeem our public shares in an amount that would cause our net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001 upon consummation of our initial business combination and after payment of underwriters’ fees and commissions (so that we are not subject to the SEC’s “penny stock” rules). If this optional redemption right is exercised with respect to an excessive number of public shares such that we cannot satisfy the net tangible asset requirement, we would not proceed with the amendment or the related redemption of our public shares at such time. Pursuant to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, such an amendment would need to be approved by the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 65% of all then outstanding shares of our common stock.

 

All costs and expenses associated with implementing our plan of dissolution, as well as payments to any creditors, will be funded from amounts remaining as part of the estimated $1,000,000 of cash held outside of the trust account, although we cannot assure you that there will be sufficient funds for such purpose. However, if those funds are not sufficient to cover the costs and expenses associated with implementing our plan of dissolution, to the extent that there is any interest accrued in the trust account not required to pay franchise and income taxes on interest income earned on the trust account balance, we may request the trustee to release to us an additional amount of up to $100,000 of such accrued interest to pay those costs and expenses.

 

If we were to expend all of the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants, other than the proceeds deposited in the trust account, and without taking into account interest, if any, earned on the trust account, the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders upon our dissolution would be approximately $10.00. The proceeds deposited in the trust account could, however, become subject to the claims of our creditors which would have higher priority than the claims of our public stockholders. We cannot assure you that the actual per-share redemption amount received by stockholders will not be substantially less than $10.00. Under Section 281(b) of the DGCL, our plan of dissolution must provide for all claims against us to be paid in full or make provision for payments to be made in full, as applicable, if there are sufficient assets. These claims must be paid or provided for before we make any distribution of our remaining assets to our stockholders. While we intend to pay such amounts, if any, we cannot assure you that we will have funds sufficient to pay or provide for all creditors’ claims.

 

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Although we seek to have all vendors (other than our independent registered public accounting firm), service providers, prospective target businesses and other entities with which we do business execute agreements with us waiving any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to any monies held in the trust account for the benefit of our public stockholders, there is no guarantee that they will execute such agreements or even if they execute such agreements that they would be prevented from bringing claims against the trust account including but not limited to fraudulent inducement, breach of fiduciary responsibility or other similar claims, as well as claims challenging the enforceability of the waiver, in each case in order to gain an advantage with respect to a claim against our assets, including the funds held in the trust account. If any third party refuses to execute an agreement waiving such claims to the monies held in the trust account, our management will perform an analysis of the alternatives available to it and will only enter into an agreement with a third party that has not executed a waiver if management believes that such third party’s engagement would be significantly more beneficial to us than any alternative. Examples of possible instances where we may engage a third party that refuses to execute a waiver include the engagement of a third party consultant whose particular expertise or skills are believed by management to be significantly superior to those of other consultants that would agree to execute a waiver or in cases where management is unable to find a service provider willing to execute a waiver. In addition, there is no guarantee that such entities will agree to waive any claims they may have in the future as a result of, or arising out of, any negotiations, contracts or agreements with us and will not seek recourse against the trust account for any reason. Our sponsor has agreed that it will be liable to us if and to the extent any claims by a third party (other than our independent public accountants) for services rendered or products sold to us, or a prospective target business with which we have entered into a written letter of intent, confidentiality or other similar agreement or business combination agreement, reduce the amount of funds in the trust account to below (i) $10.00 per public share or (ii) such lesser amount per public share held in the trust account as of the date of the liquidation of the trust account, due to reductions in value of the trust assets, in each case net of the amount of interest which may be withdrawn to pay taxes, except as to any claims by a third party or prospective target business who executed a waiver of any and all rights to the monies held in the trust account (whether or not such waiver is enforceable) and except as to any claims under our indemnity of the underwriters of our initial public offering against certain liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act. However, we have not asked our sponsor to reserve for such indemnification obligations, nor have we independently verified whether our sponsor has sufficient funds to satisfy its indemnity obligations, and we believe that our sponsor’s only assets are securities of our company. Therefore, we cannot assure you that our sponsor would be able to satisfy those obligations. As a result, if any such claims were successfully made against the trust account, the funds available for our initial business combination and redemptions could be reduced to less than $10.00 per public share. In such event, we may not be able to complete our initial business combination, and you would receive such lesser amount per share in connection with any redemption of your public shares. None of our officers or directors will indemnify us for claims by third parties including, without limitation, claims by vendors and prospective target businesses.

 

In the event that the proceeds in the trust account are reduced below (i) $10.00 per public share or (ii) such lesser amount per public share held in the trust account as of the date of the liquidation of the trust account, due to reductions in value of the trust assets, in each case net of the amount of interest which may be withdrawn to pay taxes, and our sponsor asserts that it is unable to satisfy its indemnification obligations or that it has no indemnification obligations related to a particular claim, our independent directors would determine whether to take legal action against our sponsor to enforce its indemnification obligations. While we currently expect that our independent directors would take legal action on our behalf against our sponsor to enforce its indemnification obligations to us, it is possible that our independent directors in exercising their business judgment may choose not to do so if, for example, the cost of such legal action is deemed by the independent directors to be too high relative to the amount recoverable or if the independent directors determine that a favorable outcome is not likely. We have not asked our sponsor to reserve for such indemnification obligations and we cannot assure you that our sponsor would be able to satisfy those obligations. Accordingly, we cannot assure you that due to claims of creditors the actual value of the per-share redemption price will not be less than $10.00 per public share.

 

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We will seek to reduce the possibility that our sponsor will have to indemnify the trust account due to claims of creditors by endeavoring to have all vendors, service providers (other than our independent registered public accounting firm), prospective target businesses or other entities with which we do business execute agreements with us waiving any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to monies held in the trust account. Our sponsor will also not be liable as to any claims under our indemnity of the underwriters of our initial public offering against certain liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act. We will have access to up to approximately $1,000,000 from the proceeds of our initial public offering with which to pay any such potential claims (including costs and expenses incurred in connection with our liquidation, currently estimated to be no more than approximately $100,000). In the event that we liquidate and it is subsequently determined that the reserve for claims and liabilities is insufficient, stockholders who received funds from our trust account could be liable for claims made by creditors. In the event that our offering expenses exceed our estimate of $1,000,000, we may fund such excess with funds from the funds not to be held in the trust account. In such case, the amount of funds we intend to be held outside the trust account would decrease by a corresponding amount. Conversely, in the event that the offering expenses are less than our estimate of $1,000,000, the amount of funds we intend to be held outside the trust account would increase by a corresponding amount.

 

Under the DGCL, stockholders may be held liable for claims by third parties against a corporation to the extent of distributions received by them in a dissolution. The pro rata portion of our trust account distributed to our public stockholders upon the redemption of our public shares in the event we do not complete our business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering may be considered a liquidating distribution under Delaware law. If the corporation complies with certain procedures set forth in Section 280 of the DGCL intended to ensure that it makes reasonable provision for all claims against it, including a 60-day notice period during which any third-party claims can be brought against the corporation, a 90-day period during which the corporation may reject any claims brought, and an additional 150-day waiting period before any liquidating distributions are made to stockholders, any liability of stockholders with respect to a liquidating distribution is limited to the lesser of such stockholder’s pro rata share of the claim or the amount distributed to the stockholder, and any liability of the stockholder would be barred after the third anniversary of the dissolution.

 

Furthermore, if the pro rata portion of our trust account distributed to our public stockholders upon the redemption of our public shares in the event we do not complete our business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering is not considered a liquidating distribution under Delaware law and such redemption distribution is deemed to be unlawful, then pursuant to Section 174 of the DGCL, the statute of limitations for claims of creditors could then be six years after the unlawful redemption distribution, instead of three years, as in the case of a liquidating distribution. If we do not complete our business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, we will: (i) cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up, (ii) as promptly as reasonably possible but not more than ten business days thereafter, redeem the public shares, at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco (less up to $100,000 of interest to pay dissolution expenses), divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.), which redemption will completely extinguish public stockholders’ rights as stockholders (including the right to receive further liquidating distributions, if any), subject to applicable law, and (iii) as promptly as reasonably possible following such redemption, subject to the approval of our remaining stockholders and our board of directors, dissolve and liquidate, subject in each case to our obligations under Delaware law to provide for claims of creditors and the requirements of other applicable law. Accordingly, it is our intention to redeem our public shares as soon as reasonably possible following our 24” month, and, therefore, we do not intend to comply with those procedures. As such, our stockholders could potentially be liable for any claims to the extent of distributions received by them (but no more) and any liability of our stockholders may extend well beyond the third anniversary of such date.

 

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Because we will not be complying with Section 280, Section 281(b) of the DGCL requires us to adopt a plan, based on facts known to us at such time that will provide for our payment of all existing and pending claims or claims that may be potentially brought against us within the subsequent 10 years. However, because we are a blank check company, rather than an operating company, and our operations are limited to searching for prospective target businesses to acquire, the only likely claims to arise would be from our vendors (such as lawyers, investment bankers, etc.) or prospective target businesses. As described above, pursuant to the obligation contained in our underwriting agreement, we will seek to have all vendors, service providers (other than our independent registered public accounting firm), prospective target businesses or other entities with which we do business execute agreements with us waiving any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to any monies held in the trust account. As a result of this obligation, the claims that could be made against us are significantly limited and the likelihood that any claim that would result in any liability extending to the trust account is remote. Further, our sponsor may be liable only to the extent necessary to ensure that the amounts in the trust account are not reduced below (i) $10.00 per public share or (ii) such lesser amount per public share held in the trust account as of the date of the liquidation of the trust account, due to reductions in value of the trust assets, in each case net of the amount of interest withdrawn to pay taxes and will not be liable as to any claims under our indemnity of the underwriters of our initial public offering against certain liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act. In the event that an executed waiver is deemed to be unenforceable against a third party, our sponsor will not be responsible to the extent of any liability for such third-party claims.

 

If we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, the proceeds held in the trust account could be subject to applicable bankruptcy law, and may be included in our bankruptcy estate and subject to the claims of third parties with priority over the claims of our stockholders. To the extent any bankruptcy claims deplete the trust account, we cannot assure you we will be able to return $10.00 per share to our public stockholders. Additionally, if we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, any distributions received by stockholders could be viewed under applicable debtor/creditor and/or bankruptcy laws as either a “preferential transfer” or a “fraudulent conveyance.” As a result, a bankruptcy court could seek to recover some or all amounts received by our stockholders. Furthermore, our board of directors may be viewed as having breached its fiduciary duty to our creditors and/or may have acted in bad faith, and thereby exposing itself and our company to claims of punitive damages, by paying public stockholders from the trust account prior to addressing the claims of creditors. We cannot assure you that claims will not be brought against us for these reasons.

 

Our public stockholders will be entitled to receive funds from the trust account only (i) in the event of the redemption of our public shares and any Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.) if we do not complete our business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, subject to applicable law, (ii) in connection with a stockholder vote to approve an amendment to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that would affect the substance or timing of our obligation to redeem 100% of our public shares if we have not consummated an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering or (iii) if they redeem their respective shares for cash upon the completion of the initial business combination. In no other circumstances will a stockholder have any right or interest of any kind to or in the trust account. In the event we seek stockholder approval in connection with our initial business combination, a stockholder’s voting in connection with the business combination alone will not result in a stockholder’s redeeming its shares to us for an applicable pro rata share of the trust account. Such stockholder must have also exercised its redemption rights described above. These provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, like all provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, may be amended with a stockholder vote.

 

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Competition

 

In identifying, evaluating and selecting a target business for our business combination, we may encounter intense competition from other entities having a business objective similar to ours, including other blank check companies, private equity groups and leveraged buyout funds, and operating businesses seeking strategic acquisitions. Many of these entities are well established and have extensive experience identifying and effecting business combinations directly or through affiliates. Moreover, many of these competitors possess greater financial, technical, human and other resources than we do. Our ability to acquire larger target businesses is limited by our available financial resources. This inherent limitation gives others an advantage in pursuing the acquisition of a target business. Furthermore, our obligation to pay cash in connection with our public stockholders who exercise their redemption rights may reduce the resources available to us for our initial business combination and our outstanding warrants, and the future dilution they potentially represent, may not be viewed favorably by certain target businesses. Either of these factors may place us at a competitive disadvantage in successfully negotiating an initial business combination.

 

Facilities

 

Our executive offices are located at 102 East Main Street, Second Story, Carnegie, Pennsylvania 15106, and our telephone number is (713) 446-6259. The cost for our use of this space is included in the $10,000 per month fee we pay to our sponsor for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services. We consider our current office space adequate for our current operations.

 

Employees and Human Capital Resources

 

We currently have three officers. These individuals are not obligated to devote any specific number of hours to our matters but they intend to devote as much of their time as they deem necessary to our affairs until we have completed our initial business combination. The amount of time that they will devote in any time period will vary based on whether a target business has been selected for our initial business combination and the stage of the business combination process we are in.

 

Periodic Reporting and Financial Information

 

We have registered our units, Class A common stock and warrants under the Exchange Act and have reporting obligations, including the requirement that we file annual, quarterly and current reports with the SEC. In accordance with the requirements of the Exchange Act, our annual reports will contain financial statements audited and reported on by our independent registered public accountants.

 

We will provide stockholders with audited financial statements of the prospective target business as part of the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) sent to stockholders. These financial statements may be required to be prepared in accordance with GAAP, or reconciled to, GAAP, or IFRS, depending on the circumstances, and the historical financial statements may be required to be audited in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. These financial statement requirements may limit the pool of potential target businesses we may acquire because some targets may be unable to provide such statements in time for us to disclose such statements in accordance with federal proxy rules and complete our initial business combination within the prescribed time frame. We cannot assure you that any particular target business identified by us as a potential acquisition candidate will have financial statements prepared in accordance with the requirements outlined above, or that the potential target business will be able to prepare its financial statements in accordance with the requirements outlined above. To the extent that any applicable requirements cannot be met, we may not be able to acquire the proposed target business. While this may limit the pool of potential acquisition candidates, we do not believe that this limitation is material.

 

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We are required to evaluate our internal control procedures for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2021 as required by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act. Only in the event we are deemed to be a large accelerated filer or an accelerated filer will we be required to have our internal control procedures audited. A target business may not be in compliance with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act regarding adequacy of their internal controls. The development of the internal controls of any such entity to achieve compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act may increase the time and costs necessary to complete any such acquisition.

 

We have filed a Registration Statement on Form 8-A with the SEC to voluntarily register our securities under Section 12 of the Exchange Act. As a result, we are subject to the rules and regulations promulgated under the Exchange Act. We have no current intention of filing a Form 15 to suspend our reporting or other obligations under the Exchange Act prior or subsequent to the consummation of our initial business combination.

 

We are an “emerging growth company,” as defined in Section 2(a) of the Securities Act, as modified by the JOBS Act. As such, we are eligible to take advantage of certain exemptions from various reporting requirements that are applicable to other public companies that are not “emerging growth companies” including, but not limited to, not being required to comply with the auditor attestation requirements of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, reduced disclosure obligations regarding executive compensation in our periodic reports and proxy statements, and exemptions from the requirements of holding a non-binding advisory vote on executive compensation and shareholder approval of any golden parachute payments not previously approved. If some investors find our securities less attractive as a result, there may be a less active trading market for our securities and the prices of our securities may be more volatile.

 

In addition, Section 107 of the JOBS Act also provides that an “emerging growth company” can take advantage of the extended transition period provided in Section 7(a)(2)(B) of the Securities Act for complying with new or revised accounting standards. In other words, an “emerging growth company” can delay the adoption of certain accounting standards until those standards would otherwise apply to private companies. We intend to take advantage of the benefits of this extended transition period.

 

We will remain an emerging growth company until the earlier of (i) the last day of the fiscal year (a) following the fifth anniversary of the completion of our initial public offering, (b) in which we have total annual gross revenue of at least $1.07 billion (as adjusted for inflation pursuant to SEC rules from time to time), or (c) in which we are deemed to be a large accelerated filer, which means the market value of our Class A common stock that is held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the prior June 30th, and (ii) the date on which we have issued more than $1.0 billion in non-convertible debt during the prior three-year period.

 

Additionally, we are a “smaller reporting company” as defined in Item 10(t)(1) of Regulation S-K. Smaller reporting companies may take advantage of certain reduced disclosure obligations, including, among other things, providing only two years of audited financial statements. We will remain a smaller reporting company until the last day of the fiscal year in which (i) the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $250 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter or (ii) our annual revenues exceeded $100 million during such completed fiscal year and the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter.

 

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Item 1A.Risk Factors

 

An investment in our securities involves a high degree of risk. You should consider carefully all of the risks described below, together with the other information contained in this Report and the final prospectus associated with our initial public offering, before making a decision to invest in our securities. If any of the following events occur, our business, financial condition and operating results may be materially adversely affected. In that event, the trading price of our securities could decline, and you could lose all or part of your investment.

 

We are a recently formed blank check company with no operating history and no revenues, and you have no basis on which to evaluate our ability to achieve our business objective.

 

We are a recently formed company with no operating results. Because we lack an operating history, you have no basis upon which to evaluate our ability to achieve our business objective of completing our initial business combination with one or more target businesses. We may be unable to complete our business combination. If we fail to complete our business combination, we will never generate any operating revenues.

 

Past performance by the Rice family, Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies and our management team may not be indicative of future performance of an investment in the Company. In addition, none of our officers or directors have served as a sponsor, director or officer of any blank check companies or special purpose acquisition companies in the past.

 

Information regarding performance by, or businesses associated with, the Rice family, Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies and our management team is presented for informational purposes only. Past performance by the Rice family, Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies or our management team is not a guarantee either (i) of success with respect to any business combination we may consummate or (ii) that we will be able to locate a suitable candidate for our initial business combination. You should not rely on the historical record of the Rice family, Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies or our management team as indicative of our future performance or of an investment in the company or the returns the company will, or is likely to, generate going forward. In addition, none of our officers or directors have served as a sponsor, director or officer of any blank check companies or special purpose acquisition companies in the past.

 

Our public stockholders may not be afforded an opportunity to vote on our proposed business combination, which means we may complete our initial business combination even though a majority of our public stockholders do not support such a combination.

 

We may choose not to hold a stockholder vote to approve our initial business combination if the business combination would not require stockholder approval under applicable law or stock exchange listing requirements. Except as required by applicable law or stock exchange requirement, the decision as to whether we will seek stockholder approval of a proposed business combination or will allow stockholders to sell their shares to us in a tender offer will be made by us, solely in our discretion, and will be based on a variety of factors, such as the timing of the transaction and whether the terms of the transaction would otherwise require us to seek stockholder approval. Accordingly, we may complete our initial business combination even if holders of a majority of our public shares do not approve of the business combination we complete.

 

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In evaluating a prospective target business for our initial business combination, our management may consider the availability of funds from the sale of the forward purchase securities, which may be used as part of the consideration to the sellers in the initial business combination. If Atlas Point Fund decides not to accept our offer to purchase the forward purchase securities, we may decide not to consummate our initial business combination, or if we decide to, we may lack sufficient funds to consummate our initial business combination.

 

We have entered into a forward purchase agreement pursuant to which Atlas Point Fund, which is a fund managed by CIBC National Trust but is not affiliated with us or our sponsor, agreed to purchase up to $75,000,000 of either (i) a number of forward purchase units for $10.00 per unit or (ii) a number of forward purchase shares for $9.67 per share, in a private placement that closed simultaneously with the closing of our initial business combination. Whether we will issue Atlas Point Fund forward purchase units valued at $10.00 per unit or forward purchase shares valued at $9.67 per share will be determined at our election, and in our sole discretion, at least 10 business days prior to the closing of our initial business combination. The funds from the sale of the forward purchase securities are expected to be used as part of the consideration to the sellers in our initial business combination, and to pay expenses in connection with our initial business combination and may be used for working capital in the post-transaction company.

 

The obligations under the forward purchase agreement will not depend on whether any public stockholders elect to redeem their shares in connection with our initial business combination. However, if the sale of the forward purchase securities does not close, for example, by reason of the failure of Atlas Point Fund to fund the purchase price for its forward purchase securities, we may lack sufficient funds to consummate our initial business combination. Atlas Point Fund’s obligation to purchase the forward purchase securities will, among other things, be conditioned on Atlas Point Fund giving us its irrevocable written consent to purchase the forward purchase securities no later than five days after we notify it of our intention to meet to consider entering into a definitive agreement for a proposed business combination and on a requirement that such initial business combination is approved by a majority of our board and a majority of the independent directors of our board. Accordingly, if Atlas Point Fund does not consent to the purchase, or if the initial business combination is not approved by a majority of our board and a majority of the independent directors of our board, Atlas Point Fund would not be obligated to purchase any forward purchase securities.

 

Additionally, Atlas Point Fund’s obligations to purchase the forward purchase securities will be subject to termination prior to the closing of the sale of such securities by mutual written consent of us and Atlas Point Fund, or automatically: (i) if our initial business combination is not consummated within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering or (ii) if we become subject to any voluntary or involuntary petition under the United States federal bankruptcy laws or any state insolvency law, in each case which is not withdrawn within 60 days after being filed, or a receiver, fiscal agent or similar officer is appointed by a court for business or property of us or Atlas Point Fund, in each case which is not removed, withdrawn or terminated within 60 days after such appointment. In addition, Atlas Point Fund’s obligations to purchase the forward purchase securities will be subject to fulfillment of customary closing conditions, including that our initial business combination must be consummated substantially concurrently with the purchase of the forward purchase securities. If Atlas Point Fund decides not to accept our offer to purchase the forward purchase securities, we may decide not to consummate our initial business combination, or if we decide to, we may lack sufficient funds to consummate our initial business combination.

 

Your only opportunity to affect the investment decision regarding a potential business combination may be limited to the exercise of your right to redeem your shares from us for cash.

 

At the time of your investment in us, you will not be provided with an opportunity to evaluate the specific merits or risks of our initial business combination. Since our board of directors may complete a business combination without seeking stockholder approval, public stockholders may not have the right or opportunity to vote on the business combination, unless we seek such stockholder vote. Accordingly, if we do not seek stockholder approval, your only opportunity to affect the investment decision regarding a potential business combination may be limited to exercising your redemption rights within the period of time (which will be at least 20 business days) set forth in our tender offer documents mailed to our public stockholders in which we describe our initial business combination.

 

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If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, our initial stockholders and management team have agreed to vote in favor of such initial business combination, regardless of how our public stockholders vote.

 

Our initial stockholders own 20% of our shares of common stock following the completion of our initial public offering. Our initial stockholders and management team also may from time to time purchase shares of our Class A common stock prior to our initial business combination. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that, if we seek stockholder approval of an initial business combination, such initial business combination will be approved if we receive the affirmative vote of a majority of the shares voted at such meeting, including the founder shares and sponsor shares. As a result, in addition to our initial stockholders’ founder shares and sponsor shares, we would need 8,896,875, or 37.5%, of the 23,725,000 public shares sold in our initial public offering to be voted in favor of an initial business combination in order to have our initial business combination approved. Accordingly, if we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, the agreement by our initial stockholders and management team to vote in favor of our initial business combination will increase the likelihood that we will receive the requisite stockholder approval for such initial business combination.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to redeem their shares for cash may make our financial condition unattractive to potential business combination targets, which may make it difficult for us to enter into a business combination with a target.

 

We may seek to enter into a business combination transaction agreement with a prospective target that requires as a closing condition that we have a minimum net worth or a certain amount of cash. If too many public stockholders exercise their redemption rights, we would not be able to meet such closing condition and, as a result, would not be able to proceed with the business combination. Furthermore, in no event will we redeem our public shares in an amount that would cause our net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001. Consequently, if accepting all properly submitted redemption requests would cause our net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001 upon consummation of our initial business combination or such greater amount necessary to satisfy a closing condition as described above, we would not proceed with such redemption and the related business combination and may instead search for an alternate business combination. Prospective targets will be aware of these risks and, thus, may be reluctant to enter into a business combination transaction with us.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to exercise redemption rights with respect to a large number of our shares may not allow us to complete the most desirable business combination or optimize our capital structure.

 

At the time we enter into an agreement for our initial business combination, we will not know how many stockholders may exercise their redemption rights, and therefore will need to structure the transaction based on our expectations as to the number of shares that will be submitted for redemption. If our business combination agreement requires us to use a portion of the cash in the trust account to pay the purchase price, or requires us to have a minimum amount of cash at closing, we will need to reserve a portion of the cash in the trust account to meet such requirements, or arrange for third party financing. In addition, if a larger number of shares are submitted for redemption than we initially expected, we may need to restructure the transaction to reserve a greater portion of the cash in the trust account or arrange for third party financing. Raising additional third party financing may involve dilutive equity issuances or the incurrence of indebtedness at higher than desirable levels. The above considerations may limit our ability to complete the most desirable business combination available to us or optimize our capital structure.

 

The ability of our public stockholders to exercise redemption rights with respect to a large number of our shares could increase the probability that our initial business combination would be unsuccessful and that you would have to wait for liquidation in order to redeem your stock.

 

If our business combination agreement requires us to use a portion of the cash in the trust account to pay the purchase price, or requires us to have a minimum amount of cash at closing, the probability that our initial business combination would be unsuccessful is increased. If our initial business combination is unsuccessful, you would not receive your pro rata portion of the trust account until we liquidate the trust account. If you are in need of immediate liquidity, you could attempt to sell your stock in the open market; however, at such time our stock may trade at a discount to the pro rata amount per share in the trust account. In either situation, you may suffer a material loss on your investment or lose the benefit of funds expected in connection with our redemption until we liquidate or you are able to sell your stock in the open market.

 

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The requirement that we complete our initial business combination within 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering may give potential target businesses leverage over us in negotiating a business combination and may limit the time we have to conduct due diligence on potential business combination targets as we approach our dissolution deadline, which could undermine our ability to complete our business combination on terms that would produce value for our stockholders.

 

Any potential target business with which we enter into negotiations concerning a business combination will be aware that we must complete our initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering. Consequently, such target business may obtain leverage over us in negotiating a business combination, knowing that if we do not complete our initial business combination with that particular target business, we may be unable to complete our initial business combination with any target business. This risk will increase as we get closer to the timeframe described above. In addition, we may have limited time to conduct due diligence and may enter into our initial business combination on terms that we would have rejected upon a more comprehensive investigation.

 

Our search for a business combination, and any target business with which we ultimately consummate a business combination, may be materially adversely affected by the recent coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and the status of debt and equity markets.

 

In December 2019, a novel strain of coronavirus was reported to have surfaced in Wuhan, China, which has and is continuing to spread throughout China and other parts of the world, including the United States. On January 30, 2020, the World Health Organization declared the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) a “Public Health Emergency of International Concern.” On January 31, 2020, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex M. Azar II declared a public health emergency for the United States to aid the U.S. healthcare community in responding to COVID-19, and on March 11, 2020 the World Health Organization characterized the outbreak as a “pandemic”. The COVID-19 outbreak has resulted, and a significant outbreak of other infectious diseases could result, in a widespread health crisis that has adversely affected, in the case of COVID-19, and could adversely affect, in the case of future outbreaks of infectious diseases, the economies and financial markets worldwide, and the business of any potential target business with which we consummate a business combination could be materially and adversely affected. Furthermore, we may be unable to complete a business combination if continued concerns relating to COVID-19 continues to restrict travel, limit the ability to have meetings with potential investors or the target company’s personnel, vendors and services providers are unavailable to negotiate and consummate a transaction in a timely manner. The extent to which COVID-19 impacts our search for a business combination will depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted, including new information which may emerge concerning the severity of COVID-19 and the actions to contain COVID-19 or treat its impact, among others. If the disruptions posed by COVID-19 or other matters of global concern continue for an extensive period of time, our ability to consummate a business combination, or the operations of a target business with which we ultimately consummate a business combination, may be materially adversely affected.

 

In addition, our ability to consummate a transaction may be dependent on the ability to raise equity and debt financing which may be impacted by COVID-19 and other events, including as a result of increased market volatility, decreased market liquidity and third-party financing being unavailable on terms acceptable to us or at all. Furthermore, the impact of COVID-19 may increase the other risks identified herein.

 

22

 

 

We may not be able to complete our initial business combination within the 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering, in which case we would cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up and we would redeem our public shares and liquidate, in which case our public stockholders may receive only their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

We may not be able to find a suitable target business and complete our initial business combination within 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering. Our ability to complete our initial business combination may be negatively impacted by general market conditions, volatility in the capital and debt markets and the other risks described herein including the impact of COVID-19. If we have not completed our initial business combination within such time period, we will (i) cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up, (ii) as promptly as reasonably possible but not more than ten business days thereafter, redeem the public shares, at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account, including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco (less up to $100,000 of interest to pay dissolution expenses), divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.), which redemption will completely extinguish public stockholders’ rights as stockholders (including the right to receive further liquidating distributions, if any), subject to applicable law, and (iii) as promptly as reasonably possible following such redemption, subject to the approval of our remaining stockholders and our board of directors, dissolve and liquidate, subject in each case to our obligations under Delaware law to provide for claims of creditors and the requirements of other applicable law. In such case, our public stockholders may only receive $10.00 per share, and our warrants will expire worthless. In certain circumstances, our public stockholders may receive less than $10.00 per share on the redemption of their shares.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination, our sponsor, directors, officers, advisors and their affiliates may elect to purchase shares or public warrants from public stockholders or public warrantholders, which may influence a vote on a proposed business combination and reduce the public “float” of our Class A common stock.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and we do not conduct redemptions in connection with our business combination pursuant to the tender offer rules, our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, directors, officers, advisors or their affiliates may purchase shares or public warrants or a combination thereof in privately negotiated transactions or in the open market either prior to or following the completion of our initial business combination, although they are under no obligation to do so. There is no limit on the number of shares our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, directors, officers, advisors or their affiliates may purchase in such transactions, subject to compliance with applicable law and the rules of the NYSE. However, other than as expressly stated herein, they have no current commitments, plans or intentions to engage in such transactions and have not formulated any terms or conditions for any such transactions. None of the funds in the trust account will be used to purchase shares or public warrants in such transactions.

 

In the event that our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, directors, officers, advisors or their affiliates purchase shares in privately negotiated transactions from public stockholders who have already elected to exercise their redemption rights, such selling stockholders would be required to revoke their prior elections to redeem their shares. The purpose of any such purchases of shares could be to vote such shares in favor of the business combination and thereby increase the likelihood of obtaining stockholder approval of the business combination or to satisfy a closing condition in an agreement with a target that requires us to have a minimum net worth or a certain amount of cash at the closing of our business combination, where it appears that such requirement would otherwise not be met. The purpose of any such purchases of public warrants could be to reduce the number of public warrants outstanding or to vote such warrants on any matters submitted to the warrantholders for approval in connection with our initial business combination. Any such purchases of our securities may result in the completion of our business combination that may not otherwise have been possible. Any such purchases will be reported pursuant to Section 13 and Section 16 of the Exchange Act to the extent the purchasers are subject to such reporting requirements.

 

In addition, if such purchases are made, the public “float” of our Class A common stock or public warrants and the number of beneficial holders of our securities may be reduced, possibly making it difficult to maintain or obtain the quotation, listing or trading of our securities on a national securities exchange.

 

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If a stockholder fails to receive notice of our offer to redeem our public shares in connection with our business combination, or fails to comply with the procedures for tendering its shares, such shares may not be redeemed.

 

We will comply with the proxy rules or tender offer rules, as applicable, when conducting redemptions in connection with our business combination. Despite our compliance with these rules, if a stockholder fails to receive our proxy solicitation or tender offer materials, as applicable, such stockholder may not become aware of the opportunity to redeem its shares. In addition, the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials, as applicable, that we will furnish to holders of our public shares in connection with our initial business combination will describe the various procedures that must be complied with in order to validly redeem or tender public shares. For example, we may require our public stockholders seeking to exercise their redemption rights, whether they are record holders or hold their shares in “street name,” to either tender their certificates to our transfer agent prior to the date set forth in the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials mailed to such holders, or up to two business days prior to the vote on the proposal to approve the business combination in the event we distribute proxy materials, or to deliver their shares to the transfer agent electronically. In the event that a stockholder fails to comply with these or any other procedures, its shares may not be redeemed.

 

You will not have any rights or interests in funds from the trust account, except under certain limited circumstances. Therefore, to liquidate your investment, you may be forced to sell your public shares or warrants, potentially at a loss.

 

Our public stockholders will be entitled to receive funds from the trust account only upon the earliest to occur of: (i) the redemption of any public shares properly submitted in connection with our completion of an initial business combination (including the release of funds to pay any amounts due to any public stockholders who properly exercise their redemption rights in connection therewith), (ii) the redemption of any public shares properly submitted in connection with a stockholder vote to approve an amendment to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that would modify the substance or timing of our obligation to redeem 100% of our public shares if we have not consummated an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, or (iii) the redemption of our public shares and any Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.) if we do not complete an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, subject to applicable law and as further described herein. In addition, if we do not complete an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering for any reason, compliance with Delaware law may require that we submit a plan of dissolution to our then-existing stockholders for approval prior to the distribution of the proceeds held in our trust account. In that case, public stockholders may be forced to wait beyond 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering before they receive funds from our trust account. In no other circumstances will a public stockholder have any right or interest of any kind in the trust account. Holders of warrants will not have any right to the proceeds held in the trust account with respect to the warrants. Accordingly, to liquidate your investment, you may be forced to sell your public shares or warrants, potentially at a loss.

 

The NYSE may delist our securities from trading on its exchange, which could limit investors’ ability to make transactions in our securities and subject us to additional trading restrictions.

 

Our securities are currently listed on the NYSE. However, we cannot assure you that our securities will be, or will continue to be, listed on the NYSE in the future or prior to our initial business combination. In order to continue listing our securities on the NYSE prior to our initial business combination, we must maintain certain financial, distribution and stock price levels. Generally, we must maintain a minimum number of holders of our securities (generally 300 round lot holders). Additionally, in connection with our initial business combination, we will be required to demonstrate compliance with the NYSE’s initial listing requirements, which are more rigorous than the NYSE’s continued listing requirements, in order to continue to maintain the listing of our securities on the NYSE. For instance, our stock price would generally be required to be at least $4.00 per share, our aggregate market value would be required to be at least $100,000,000, and the market value of our publicly-held shares would be required to be at least $80,000,000. We cannot assure you that we will be able to meet those initial listing requirements at that time.

 

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If the NYSE delists our securities from trading on its exchange and we are not able to list our securities on another national securities exchange, we expect our securities could be quoted on an over-the-counter market. If this were to occur, we could face significant material adverse consequences, including:

 

a limited availability of market quotations for our securities;

 

reduced liquidity for our securities;

 

a determination that our Class A common stock is a “penny stock” which will require brokers trading in our Class A common stock to adhere to more stringent rules and possibly result in a reduced level of trading activity in the secondary trading market for our securities;

 

a limited amount of news and analyst coverage; and

 

a decreased ability to issue additional securities or obtain additional financing in the future.

 

The National Securities Markets Improvement Act of 1996, which is a federal statute, prevents or preempts the states from regulating the sale of certain securities, which are referred to as “covered securities.” Because our Class A common stock and warrants are listed on the NYSE, our units, Class A common stock and warrants are covered securities. Although the states are preempted from regulating the sale of our securities, the federal statute does allow the states to investigate companies if there is a suspicion of fraud, and, if there is a finding of fraudulent activity, then the states can regulate or bar the sale of covered securities in a particular case. While we are not aware of a state having used these powers to prohibit or restrict the sale of securities issued by blank check companies, other than the state of Idaho, certain state securities regulators view blank check companies unfavorably and might use these powers, or threaten to use these powers, to hinder the sale of securities of blank check companies in their states. Further, if we were no longer listed on the NYSE, our securities would not be covered securities and we would be subject to regulation in each state in which we offer our securities.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and we do not conduct redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules, and if you or a “group” of stockholders are deemed to hold in excess of 20% of our Class A common stock, you will lose the ability to redeem all such shares in excess of 20% of our Class A common stock.

 

If we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and we do not conduct redemptions in connection with our initial business combination pursuant to the tender offer rules, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that a public stockholder, together with any affiliate of such stockholder or any other person with whom such stockholder is acting in concert or as a “group” (as defined under Section 13 of the Exchange Act), will be restricted from seeking redemption rights with respect to more than an aggregate of 20% of the shares sold in our initial public offering without our prior consent, which we refer to as the “Excess Shares.” However, we would not be restricting our stockholders’ ability to vote all of their shares (including Excess Shares) for or against our business combination. Your inability to redeem the Excess Shares will reduce your influence over our ability to complete our business combination and you could suffer a material loss on your investment in us if you sell Excess Shares in open market transactions. Additionally, you will not receive redemption distributions with respect to the Excess Shares if we complete our business combination. And as a result, you will continue to hold that number of shares exceeding 20% and, in order to dispose of such shares, would be required to sell your stock in open market transactions, potentially at a loss.

 

25

 

 

As the number of special purpose acquisition companies evaluating targets increases, attractive targets may become scarcer and there may be more competition for attractive targets. This could increase the cost of our initial business combination and could even result in our inability to find a target or to consummate an initial business combination.

 

In recent years, the number of special purpose acquisition companies that have been formed has increased substantially. Many potential targets for special purpose acquisition companies have already entered into an initial business combination, and there are still many special purpose acquisition companies seeking targets for their initial business combination, as well as many such companies currently in registration. As a result, at times, fewer attractive targets may be available, and it may require more time, more effort and more resources to identify a suitable target and to consummate an initial business combination. In addition, because there are more special purpose acquisition companies seeking to enter into an initial business combination with available targets, the competition for available targets with attractive fundamentals or business models may increase, which could cause target companies to demand improved financial terms. Attractive deals could also become scarcer for other reasons, such as economic or industry sector downturns, geopolitical tensions or increases in the cost of additional capital needed to close business combinations or operate targets post-business combination. This could increase the cost of, delay or otherwise complicate or frustrate our ability to find and consummate an initial business combination, and may result in our inability to consummate an initial business combination on terms favorable to our investors altogether.

 

Because of our limited resources and the significant competition for business combination opportunities, it may be more difficult for us to complete our initial business combination. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may receive only their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

We expect to encounter intense competition from other entities having a business objective similar to ours, including private investors (which may be individuals or investment partnerships), other blank check companies and other entities, domestic and international, competing for the types of businesses we intend to acquire. Many of these individuals and entities are well-established and have extensive experience in identifying and effecting, directly or indirectly, acquisitions of companies operating in or providing services to various industries. Many of these competitors possess greater technical, human and other resources or more local industry knowledge than we do and our financial resources will be relatively limited when contrasted with those of many of these competitors. While we believe there are numerous target businesses we could potentially acquire with the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants, our ability to compete with respect to the acquisition of certain target businesses that are sizable will be limited by our available financial resources. This inherent competitive limitation gives others an advantage in pursuing the acquisition of certain target businesses. Furthermore, we are obligated to offer holders of our public shares the right to redeem their shares for cash at the time of our initial business combination, in conjunction with a stockholder vote or via a tender offer. Target businesses will be aware that this may reduce the resources available to us for our initial business combination. Any of these obligations may place us at a competitive disadvantage in successfully negotiating a business combination. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may receive only their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless. In certain circumstances, our public stockholders may receive less than $10.00 per share upon our liquidation. See “— If third parties bring claims against us, the proceeds held in the trust account could be reduced and the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share” and other risk factors below.

 

26

 

 

If the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants not being held in the trust account are insufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months, we may be unable to complete our initial business combination, in which case our public stockholders may only receive $10.00 per share, or less than such amount in certain circumstances, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

The funds available to us outside of the trust account may not be sufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months, assuming that our initial business combination is not completed during that time. We believe that, upon the closing of our initial public offering, the funds available to us outside of the trust account will be sufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months; however, we cannot assure you that our estimate is accurate. Of the funds available to us, we could use a portion of the funds available to us to pay fees to consultants to assist us with our search for a target business. We could also use a portion of the funds as a down payment or to fund a “no-shop” provision (a provision in letters of intent or merger agreements designed to keep target businesses from “shopping” around for transactions with other companies on terms more favorable to such target businesses) with respect to a particular proposed business combination, although we do not have any current intention to do so. If we entered into a letter of intent or merger agreement where we paid for the right to receive exclusivity from a target business and were subsequently required to forfeit such funds (whether as a result of our breach or otherwise), we might not have sufficient funds to continue searching for, or conduct due diligence with respect to, a target business. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may receive only approximately $10.00 per share on the liquidation of our trust account and our warrants will expire worthless. In certain circumstances, our public stockholders may receive less than $10.00 per share upon our liquidation. See “— If third parties bring claims against us, the proceeds held in the trust account could be reduced and the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share” and other risk factors below.

 

If the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants not being held in the trust account are insufficient to allow us to operate for at least the next 24 months, it could limit the amount available to fund our search for a target business or businesses and complete our initial business combination and we will depend on loans from our sponsor or management team to fund our search for a business combination, to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco and to complete our initial business combination. If we are unable to obtain these loans, we may be unable to complete our initial business combination.

 

Of the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants, only approximately $1,000,000 is available to us outside the trust account to fund our working capital requirements. If we are required to seek additional capital, we would need to borrow funds from our sponsor, management team or other third parties to operate or we may be forced to liquidate. None of our sponsor, members of our management team nor any of their affiliates is under any obligation to advance funds to us in such circumstances. Any such advances would be repaid only from funds held outside the trust account or from funds released to us upon completion of our initial business combination. Up to $1,500,000 of such loans may be convertible into warrants of the post-business combination entity at a price of $1.00 per warrant at the option of the lender. The warrants would be identical to the private placement warrants. Prior to the completion of our initial business combination, we do not expect to seek loans from parties other than our sponsor or an affiliate of our sponsor as we do not believe third parties will be willing to loan such funds and provide a waiver against any and all rights to seek access to funds in our trust account. If we do not complete our initial business combination because we do not have sufficient funds available to us, we will be forced to cease operations and liquidate the trust account. Consequently, our public stockholders may only receive an estimated $10.00 per share, or possibly less, on our redemption of our public shares, and our warrants will expire worthless. See “— If third parties bring claims against us, the proceeds held in the trust account could be reduced and the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share” and other risk factors below.

 

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Subsequent to our completion of our initial business combination, we may be required to take write-downs or write-offs, restructuring and impairment or other charges that could have a significant negative effect on our financial condition, results of operations and our stock price, which could cause you to lose some or all of your investment.

 

Even if we conduct extensive due diligence on a target business with which we combine, we cannot assure you that this diligence will surface all material issues in relation to a particular target business, that it would be possible to uncover all material issues through a customary amount of due diligence, or that factors outside of the target business and outside of our control will not later arise. As a result of these factors, we may be forced to later write-down or write-off assets, restructure our operations, or incur impairment or other charges that could result in our reporting losses. Even if our due diligence successfully identifies certain risks, unexpected risks may arise and previously known risks may materialize in a manner not consistent with our preliminary risk analysis. Even though these charges may be non-cash items and not have an immediate impact on our liquidity, the fact that we report charges of this nature could contribute to negative market perceptions about us or our securities. In addition, charges of this nature may cause us to violate net worth or other covenants to which we may be subject as a result of assuming pre-existing debt held by a target business or by virtue of our obtaining post-combination debt financing. Accordingly, any stockholders who choose to remain stockholders following the business combination could suffer a reduction in the value of their securities. Such stockholders are unlikely to have a remedy for such reduction in value unless they are able to successfully claim that the reduction was due to the breach by our officers or directors of a duty of care or other fiduciary duty owed to them, or if they are able to successfully bring a private claim under securities laws that the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials, as applicable, relating to the business combination contained an actionable material misstatement or material omission.

 

The securities in which we invest the funds held in the trust account could bear a negative rate of interest, which could reduce the value of the assets held in trust such that the per-share redemption amount received by public stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share.

 

The proceeds held in the trust account will be invested only in U.S. government treasury obligations with a maturity of 185 days or less or in money market funds meeting certain conditions under Rule 2a-7 under the Investment Company Act, which invest only in direct U.S. government treasury obligations. While short-term U.S. government treasury obligations currently yield a positive rate of interest, they have briefly yielded negative interest rates in recent years. Central banks in Europe and Japan pursued interest rates below zero in recent years, and the Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve has not ruled out the possibility that it may in the future adopt similar policies in the United States. In the event that we do not complete our initial business combination or make certain amendments to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, our public stockholders are entitled to receive their pro rata share of the proceeds held in the trust account, plus any interest income, net of taxes paid or payable (less, in the case we do not complete our initial business combination, $100,000 of interest). Negative interest rates could reduce the value of the assets held in trust such that the per-share redemption amount received by public stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share.

 

If third parties bring claims against us, the proceeds held in the trust account could be reduced and the per-share redemption amount received by stockholders may be less than $10.00 per share.

 

Our placing of funds in the trust account may not protect those funds from third-party claims against us. Although we will seek to have all vendors, service providers (other than our independent registered public accounting firm), prospective target businesses and other entities with which we do business execute agreements with us waiving any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to any monies held in the trust account for the benefit of our public stockholders, such parties may not execute such agreements, or even if they execute such agreements, they may not be prevented from bringing claims against the trust account, including, but not limited to, fraudulent inducement, breach of fiduciary responsibility or other similar claims, as well as claims challenging the enforceability of the waiver, in each case in order to gain advantage with respect to a claim against our assets, including the funds held in the trust account. If any third party refuses to execute an agreement waiving such claims to the monies held in the trust account, our management will perform an analysis of the alternatives available to it and will only enter into an agreement with a third party that has not executed a waiver if management believes that such third party’s engagement would be significantly more beneficial to us than any alternative. Making such a request of potential target businesses may make our acquisition proposal less attractive to them and, to the extent prospective target businesses refuse to execute such a waiver, it may limit the field of potential target businesses that we might pursue.

 

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Examples of possible instances where we may engage a third party that refuses to execute a waiver include the engagement of a third party consultant whose particular expertise or skills are believed by management to be significantly superior to those of other consultants that would agree to execute a waiver or in cases where management is unable to find a service provider willing to execute a waiver. In addition, there is no guarantee that such entities will agree to waive any claims they may have in the future as a result of, or arising out of, any negotiations, contracts or agreements with us and will not seek recourse against the trust account for any reason. Upon redemption of our public shares, if we do not complete our business combination within the prescribed timeframe, or upon the exercise of a redemption right in connection with our business combination, we will be required to provide for payment of claims of creditors that were not waived that may be brought against us within the 10 years following redemption. Accordingly, the per-share redemption amount received by public stockholders could be less than the $10.00 per public share initially held in the trust account, due to claims of such creditors. Pursuant to the letter agreement the form of which is filed as an exhibit to the registration statement on Form S-1 that was filed in connection with our initial public offering, our sponsor has agreed that it will be liable to us if and to the extent any claims by a third party (other than our independent public accountants) for services rendered or products sold to us, or a prospective target business with which we have entered into a written letter of intent, confidentiality or other similar agreement or business combination agreement, reduce the amount of funds in the trust account to below the lesser of (i) $10.00 per public share and (ii) the actual amount per public share held in the trust account as of the date of the liquidation of the trust account, if less than $10.00 per share due to reductions in the value of the trust assets, in each case net of the interest which may be withdrawn to pay taxes, provided that such liability will not apply to any claims by a third party or prospective target business who executed a waiver of any and all rights to the monies held in the trust account (whether or not such waiver is enforceable) nor will it apply to any claims under our indemnity of the underwriters of our initial public offering against certain liabilities, including liabilities under the Securities Act. However, we have not asked our sponsor to reserve for such indemnification obligations, nor have we independently verified whether our sponsor has sufficient funds to satisfy its indemnity obligations and we believe that our sponsor’s only assets are securities of our company. Therefore, we cannot assure you that our sponsor would be able to satisfy those obligations. As a result, if any such claims were successfully made against the trust account, the funds available for our initial business combination and redemptions could be reduced to less than $10.00 per public share. In such event, we may not be able to complete our initial business combination, and you would receive such lesser amount per share in connection with any redemption of your public shares. None of our officers or directors will indemnify us for claims by third parties including, without limitation, claims by vendors and prospective target businesses.

 

Our directors may decide not to enforce the indemnification obligations of our sponsor, resulting in a reduction in the amount of funds in the trust account available for distribution to our public stockholders.

 

In the event that the proceeds in the trust account are reduced below the lesser of (i) $10.00 per public share and (ii) the actual amount per public share held in the trust account as of the date of the liquidation of the trust account, if less than $10.00 per share due to reductions in the value of the trust assets, in each case net of the interest which may be withdrawn to pay taxes, and our sponsor asserts that it is unable to satisfy its obligations or that it has no indemnification obligations related to a particular claim, our independent directors would determine whether to take legal action against our sponsor to enforce its indemnification obligations.

 

While we currently expect that our independent directors would take legal action on our behalf against our sponsor to enforce its indemnification obligations to us, it is possible that our independent directors in exercising their business judgment and subject to their fiduciary duties may choose not to do so in any particular instance. If our independent directors choose not to enforce these indemnification obligations, the amount of funds in the trust account available for distribution to our public stockholders may be reduced below $10.00 per share.

 

If after we distribute the proceeds in the trust account to our public stockholders, we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, a bankruptcy court may seek to recover such proceeds, and the members of our board of directors may be viewed as having breached their fiduciary duties to our creditors, thereby exposing the members of our board of directors and us to claims of punitive damages.

 

If, after we distribute the proceeds in the trust account to our public stockholders, we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, any distributions received by stockholders could be viewed under applicable debtor/creditor and/or bankruptcy laws as either a “preferential transfer” or a “fraudulent conveyance.” As a result, a bankruptcy court could seek to recover some or all amounts received by our stockholders. In addition, our board of directors may be viewed as having breached its fiduciary duty to our creditors and/or having acted in bad faith, thereby exposing itself and us to claims of punitive damages, by paying public stockholders from the trust account prior to addressing the claims of creditors.

 

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If before distributing the proceeds in the trust account to our public stockholders, we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, the claims of creditors in such proceeding may have priority over the claims of our stockholders and the per-share amount that would otherwise be received by our stockholders in connection with our liquidation may be reduced.

 

If, before distributing the proceeds in the trust account to our public stockholders, we file a bankruptcy petition or an involuntary bankruptcy petition is filed against us that is not dismissed, the proceeds held in the trust account could be subject to applicable bankruptcy law, and may be included in our bankruptcy estate and subject to the claims of third parties with priority over the claims of our stockholders. To the extent any bankruptcy claims deplete the trust account, the per-share amount that would otherwise be received by our stockholders in connection with our liquidation may be reduced.

 

If we are deemed to be an investment company under the Investment Company Act, we may be required to institute burdensome compliance requirements and our activities may be restricted, which may make it difficult for us to complete our business combination.

 

If we are deemed to be an investment company under the Investment Company Act, our activities may be restricted, including:

 

restrictions on the nature of our investments; and

 

restrictions on the issuance of securities, each of which may make it difficult for us to complete our business combination.

 

In addition, we may have imposed upon us burdensome requirements, including:

 

registration as an investment company;

 

adoption of a specific form of corporate structure; and

 

reporting, record keeping, voting, proxy and disclosure requirements and other rules and regulations.

 

In order not to be regulated as an investment company under the Investment Company Act, unless we can qualify for an exclusion, we must ensure that we are engaged primarily in a business other than investing, reinvesting or trading of securities and that our activities do not include investing, reinvesting, owning, holding or trading “investment securities” constituting more than 40% of our assets (exclusive of U.S. government securities and cash items) on an unconsolidated basis. Our business is to identify and complete a business combination and thereafter to operate the post-transaction business or assets for the long term. We do not plan to buy businesses or assets with a view to resale or profit from their resale. We do not plan to buy unrelated businesses or assets or to be a passive investor.

 

We do not believe that our anticipated principal activities will subject us to the Investment Company Act. To this end, the proceeds held in the trust account may only be invested in United States “government securities” within the meaning of Section 2(a)(16) of the Investment Company Act having a maturity of 185 days or less or in money market funds meeting certain conditions under Rule 2a-7 promulgated under the Investment Company Act which invest only in direct U.S. government treasury obligations. Pursuant to the trust agreement, the trustee is not permitted to invest in other securities or assets. By restricting the investment of the proceeds to these instruments, and by having a business plan targeted at acquiring and growing businesses for the long term (rather than on buying and selling businesses in the manner of a merchant bank or private equity fund), we intend to avoid being deemed an “investment company” within the meaning of the Investment Company Act. Our initial public offering is not intended for persons who are seeking a return on investments in government securities or investment securities. The trust account is intended as a holding place for funds pending the earliest to occur of: (i) the completion of our initial business combination; (ii) the redemption of any public shares properly submitted in connection with a stockholder vote to approve an amendment to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that would affect the substance or timing of our obligation to redeem 100% of our public shares if we have not consummated an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering; or (iii) the redemption of our public shares and any Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.) if we do not complete our business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, subject to applicable law. If we do not invest the proceeds as discussed above, we may be deemed to be subject to the Investment Company Act. If we were deemed to be subject to the Investment Company Act, compliance with these additional regulatory burdens would require additional expenses for which we have not allotted funds and may hinder our ability to complete a business combination, or may result in our liquidation. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

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Changes in laws or regulations, or a failure to comply with any laws and regulations, may adversely affect our business, including our ability to negotiate and complete our initial business combination, and results of operations.

 

We are subject to laws and regulations enacted by national, regional and local governments. In particular, we are required to comply with certain SEC and other legal requirements and numerous complex tax laws. Compliance with, and monitoring of, applicable laws and regulations may be difficult, time consuming and costly.

 

Those laws and regulations and their interpretation and application may also change from time to time and those changes could have a material adverse effect on our business, investments and results of operations. In addition, a failure to comply with applicable laws or regulations, as interpreted and applied, could have a material adverse effect on our business, including our ability to negotiate and complete our initial business combination, and results of operations.

 

Our stockholders may be held liable for claims by third parties against us to the extent of distributions received by them upon redemption of their shares.

 

Under the DGCL, stockholders may be held liable for claims by third parties against a corporation to the extent of distributions received by them in a dissolution. The pro rata portion of our trust account distributed to our public stockholders upon the redemption of our public shares in the event we do not complete our initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering may be considered a liquidating distribution under Delaware law. If a corporation complies with certain procedures set forth in Section 280 of the DGCL intended to ensure that it makes reasonable provision for all claims against it, including a 60-day notice period during which any third-party claims can be brought against the corporation, a 90-day period during which the corporation may reject any claims brought, and an additional 150-day waiting period before any liquidating distributions are made to stockholders, any liability of stockholders with respect to a liquidating distribution is limited to the lesser of such stockholder’s pro rata share of the claim or the amount distributed to the stockholder, and any liability of the stockholder would be barred after the third anniversary of the dissolution. However, it is our intention to redeem our public shares as soon as reasonably possible following the 24th month from the closing of our initial public offering in the event we do not complete our business combination and, therefore, we do not intend to comply with the foregoing procedures.

 

Because we will not comply with Section 280, Section 281(b) of the DGCL requires us to adopt a plan, based on facts known to us at such time that will provide for our payment of all existing and pending claims or claims that may be potentially brought against us within the 10 years following our dissolution. However, because we are a blank check company, rather than an operating company, and our operations will are limited to searching for prospective target businesses to acquire, the only likely claims to arise would be from our vendors (such as lawyers, investment bankers, etc.) or prospective target businesses. If our plan of distribution complies with Section 281(b) of the DGCL, any liability of stockholders with respect to a liquidating distribution is limited to the lesser of such stockholder’s pro rata share of the claim or the amount distributed to the stockholder, and any liability of the stockholder would likely be barred after the third anniversary of the dissolution. We cannot assure you that we will properly assess all claims that may be potentially brought against us. As such, our stockholders could potentially be liable for any claims to the extent of distributions received by them (but no more) and any liability of our stockholders may extend beyond the third anniversary of such date. Furthermore, if the pro rata portion of our trust account distributed to our public stockholders upon the redemption of our public shares in the event we do not complete our initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering is not considered a liquidating distribution under Delaware law and such redemption distribution is deemed to be unlawful, then pursuant to Section 174 of the DGCL, the statute of limitations for claims of creditors could then be six years after the unlawful redemption distribution, instead of three years, as in the case of a liquidating distribution.

 

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We may not hold an annual meeting of stockholders until after the consummation of our initial business combination, which could delay the opportunity for our stockholders to elect directors.

 

In accordance with the NYSE corporate governance requirements, we are not required to hold an annual meeting until no later than one year after our first fiscal year end following our listing on the NYSE. Under Section 211(b) of the DGCL, we are, however, required to hold an annual meeting of stockholders for the purposes of electing directors in accordance with our bylaws unless such election is made by written consent in lieu of such a meeting. We may not hold an annual meeting of stockholders to elect new directors prior to the consummation of our initial business combination, and thus, we may not be in compliance with Section 211(b) of the DGCL, which requires an annual meeting. Therefore, if our stockholders want us to hold an annual meeting prior to the consummation of our initial business combination, they may attempt to force us to hold one by submitting an application to the Delaware Court of Chancery in accordance with Section 211(c) of the DGCL.

 

We have not registered the shares of Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the warrants under the Securities Act or any state securities laws at this time, and such registration may not be in place when an investor desires to exercise warrants, thus precluding such investor from being able to exercise its warrants except on a cashless basis and potentially causing such warrants to expire worthless.

 

We have not registered the shares of Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the warrants under the Securities Act or any state securities laws at this time. However, under the terms of the warrant agreement, we have agreed that as soon as practicable, but in no event later than 15 business days, after the closing of our initial business combination, we will use our best efforts to file a registration statement under the Securities Act covering such shares and maintain a current prospectus relating to the Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the warrants, until the expiration of the warrants in accordance with the provisions of the warrant agreement. We cannot assure you that we will be able to do so if, for example, any facts or events arise which represent a fundamental change in the information set forth in the registration statement or prospectus, the financial statements contained or incorporated by reference therein are not current or correct or the SEC issues a stop order. If the shares issuable upon exercise of the warrants are not registered under the Securities Act, we will be required to permit holders to exercise their warrants on a cashless basis, in which case, the number of shares of Class A common stock that you will receive upon cashless exercise will be based on a formula subject to a maximum amount of shares equal to 0.361 shares of Class A common stock per warrant (subject to adjustment). However, no warrant will be exercisable for cash or on a cashless basis, and we will not be obligated to issue any shares to holders seeking to exercise their warrants, unless the issuance of the shares upon such exercise is registered or qualified under the securities laws of the state of the exercising holder, or an exemption from registration is available. Notwithstanding the above, if our Class A common stock is at the time of any exercise of a warrant not listed on a national securities exchange such that it satisfies the definition of a “covered security” under Section 18(b)(1) of the Securities Act, we may, at our option, require holders of public warrants who exercise their warrants to do so on a “cashless basis” in accordance with Section 3(a)(9) of the Securities Act and, in the event we so elect, we will not be required to file or maintain in effect a registration statement, but we will be required to use our best efforts to register or qualify the shares under applicable blue sky laws to the extent an exemption is not available. In no event will we be required to net cash settle any warrant, or issue securities or other compensation in exchange for the warrants in the event that we are unable to register or qualify the shares underlying the warrants under the Securities Act or applicable state securities laws, and there is no exemption available. If the issuance of the shares upon exercise of the warrants is not so registered or qualified or exempt from registration or qualification, the holder of such warrant shall not be entitled to exercise such warrant and such warrant may have no value and expire worthless. In such event, holders who acquired their warrants as part of a purchase of units will have paid the full unit purchase price solely for the shares of our Class A common stock included in the units. If and when the warrants become redeemable by us, we may exercise our redemption right even if we are unable to register or qualify the underlying shares of our Class A common stock for sale under all applicable state securities laws.

 

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The grant of registration rights to our initial stockholders may make it more difficult to complete our initial business combination, and the future exercise of such rights may adversely affect the market price of our Class A common stock.

 

Pursuant to the agreement entered into concurrently with the issuance and sale of the securities in our initial public offering, our initial stockholders and their permitted transferees can demand that we register the shares of our Class A common stock into which founder shares and sponsor shares are exchangeable, holders of our private placement warrants and their permitted transferees can demand that we register the private placement warrants and the shares of our Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the private placement warrants or upon exchange of any Class A Units of Opco issued upon exercise of the private placement warrants and holders of warrants that may be issued upon conversion of working capital loans may demand that we register such warrants or the Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of such warrants or upon exchange of any Class A Units of Opco issued upon exercise of such warrants. Assuming the founder shares and sponsor shares are exchanged on a one for one basis and no warrants are issued upon conversion of working capital loans, an aggregate of up to 5,940,096 shares of our Class A common stock and up to 6,771,000 warrants are subject to registration under these agreements. We will bear the cost of registering these securities. The registration and availability of such a significant number of securities for trading in the public market may have an adverse effect on the market price of our Class A common stock. In addition, the existence of the registration rights may make our initial business combination more costly or difficult to conclude. This is because the stockholders of the target business may increase the equity stake they seek in the combined entity or ask for more cash consideration to offset the negative impact on the market price of our Class A common stock that is expected when the securities owned by our initial stockholders, holders of our private placement warrants, holders of working capital loans or their respective permitted transferees are registered.

 

Because we are not limited to a particular industry, sector or any specific target businesses with which to pursue our initial business combination, you will be unable to ascertain the merits or risks of any particular target business’s operations.

 

Although we expect to focus our search for a target business in the broadly defined energy transition or sustainability arena, we may complete a business combination with an operating company in any industry or sector. However, we are not, under our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, be permitted to effectuate our business combination solely with another blank check company or similar company with nominal operations. Because we have not yet selected or approached any specific target business with respect to a business combination, there is no basis to evaluate the possible merits or risks of any particular target business’s operations, results of operations, cash flows, liquidity, financial condition or prospects. To the extent we complete our business combination, we may be affected by numerous risks inherent in the business operations with which we combine. For example, if we combine with a financially unstable business or an entity lacking an established record of revenues or earnings, we may be affected by the risks inherent in the business and operations of a financially unstable or a development stage entity. Although our officers and directors will endeavor to evaluate the risks inherent in a particular target business, we cannot assure you that we will properly ascertain or assess all of the significant risk factors or that we will have adequate time to complete due diligence. Furthermore, some of these risks may be outside of our control and leave us with no ability to control or reduce the chances that those risks will adversely impact a target business. We also cannot assure you that an investment in our units will ultimately prove to be more favorable to investors than a direct investment, if such opportunity were available, in a business combination target. Accordingly, any stockholders who choose to remain stockholders following the business combination could suffer a reduction in the value of their securities. Such stockholders are unlikely to have a remedy for such reduction in value unless they are able to successfully claim that the reduction was due to the breach by our officers or directors of a duty of care or other fiduciary duty owed to them, or if they are able to successfully bring a private claim under securities laws that the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) relating to the business combination contained an actionable material misstatement or material omission.

 

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We may seek acquisition opportunities outside of our target industries or sectors (which industries or sectors may or may not be outside of our management’s areas of expertise).

 

Although we intend to focus on identifying business combination candidates in the broad energy transition or sustainability arena that may advance the objectives of global decarbonization, we will consider a business combination outside of our target industries or sectors if a business combination candidate is presented to us and we determine that such candidate offers an attractive acquisition opportunity for our company or we are unable to identify a suitable candidate in our target industries or sectors after having expended a reasonable amount of time and effort in an attempt to do so. Although our management will endeavor to evaluate the risks inherent in any particular business combination candidate, we cannot assure you that we will adequately ascertain or assess all of the significant risk factors. We also cannot assure you that an investment in our units will not ultimately prove to be less favorable to investors in our initial public offering than a direct investment, if an opportunity were available, in a business combination candidate. In the event we elect to pursue an acquisition outside of our target industries or sectors, our management’s expertise may not be directly applicable to its evaluation or operation, and the information contained in this Report regarding our target industries or sectors would not be relevant to an understanding of the business that we elect to acquire. As a result, our management may not be able to adequately ascertain or assess all of the significant risk factors. Accordingly, any stockholders who choose to remain stockholders following our business combination could suffer a reduction in the value of their shares. Such stockholders are unlikely to have a remedy for such reduction in value.

 

Although we have identified general criteria and guidelines that we believe are important in evaluating prospective target businesses, we may enter into our initial business combination with a target that does not meet such criteria and guidelines, and as a result, the target business with which we enter into our initial business combination may not have attributes entirely consistent with our general criteria and guidelines.

 

Although we have identified general criteria and guidelines for evaluating prospective target businesses, it is possible that a target business with which we enter into our initial business combination will not have all of these positive attributes. If we complete our initial business combination with a target that does not meet some or all of these guidelines, such combination may not be as successful as a combination with a business that does meet all of our general criteria and guidelines. In addition, if we announce a prospective business combination with a target that does not meet our general criteria and guidelines, a greater number of stockholders may exercise their redemption rights, which may make it difficult for us to meet any closing condition with a target business that requires us to have a minimum net worth or a certain amount of cash. In addition, if stockholder approval of the transaction is required by law, or we decide to obtain stockholder approval for business or other legal reasons, it may be more difficult for us to attain stockholder approval of our initial business combination if the target business does not meet our general criteria and guidelines. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

We may seek business combination opportunities with a financially unstable business or an entity lacking an established record of revenue or earnings, which could subject us to volatile revenues, cash flows or earnings or difficulty in retaining key personnel.

 

To the extent we complete our initial business combination with a financially unstable business or an entity lacking an established record of revenues, cash flows or earnings, we may be affected by numerous risks inherent in the operations of the business with which we combine. These risks include volatile revenues, cash flows or earnings and difficulties in obtaining and retaining key personnel. Although our officers and directors will endeavor to evaluate the risks inherent in a particular target business, we may not be able to properly ascertain or assess all of the significant risk factors and we may not have adequate time to complete due diligence. Furthermore, some of these risks may be outside of our control and leave us with no ability to control or reduce the chances that those risks will adversely impact a target business.

 

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We are not required to obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm or from an independent accounting firm, and consequently, you may have no assurance from an independent source that the price we are paying for the business is fair to our company from a financial point of view.

 

Unless we complete our business combination with an affiliated entity, we are not required to obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm that is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm that the price we are paying is fair to our company from a financial point of view. If no opinion is obtained, our stockholders will be relying on the judgment of our board of directors, who will determine fair market value based on standards generally accepted by the financial community. Such standards used will be disclosed in our proxy solicitation or tender offer materials, as applicable, related to our initial business combination. If our board of directors is not able to independently determine the fair market value of our initial business combination, we will obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm. However, our stockholders may not be provided with a copy of such opinion, nor will they be able to rely on such opinion.

 

We may issue additional shares of our Class A common stock, preferred stock or Opco Units (and a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock) to complete our initial business combination or under an employee incentive plan after completion of our initial business combination. The number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco will convert may be adjusted after the time of our initial business combination as a result of the anti-dilution provisions contained in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. Any such issuances would dilute the interest of our stockholders and likely present other risks.

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation authorizes the issuance of up to 250,000,000 shares of our Class A common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, 20,000,000 shares of our Class B common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, and 1,000,000 undesignated shares of preferred stock, par value $0.0001 per share. There are 226,272,500 and 14,068,650 authorized but unissued shares of our Class A common stock and Class B common stock, respectively, available for issuance, which amount does not take into account shares of our Class A common stock reserved for issuance upon exercise of outstanding warrants, or shares issuable upon exchange of founder shares or other Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock). There are no shares of preferred stock issued and outstanding. The Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) are exchangeable for shares of our Class A common stock at a one-for-one ratio but subject to adjustment as set forth herein.

 

We may issue a substantial number of additional Opco Units (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock), shares of our Class A common stock or preferred stock to complete our initial business combination or under an employee incentive plan after completion of our initial business combination. We may also issue additional shares of our Class A common stock upon exchange of the founder shares, as a result of adjustments to the number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco will convert after the time of our initial business combination as a result of the anti-dilution provisions contained in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. However, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide, among other things, that prior to our initial business combination, we may not issue additional shares of capital stock that would entitle the holders thereof to (i) receive funds from the trust account or (ii) vote on any initial business combination. These provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, like all provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation, may be amended with a stockholder vote.

 

The issuance of additional Opco Units (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock), shares of Class A common stock or preferred stock:

 

may significantly dilute the equity interest of investors in our initial public offering;

 

may subordinate the rights of holders of common stock if preferred stock is issued with rights senior to those afforded our common stock;

 

could cause a change in control if a substantial number of shares of our common stock are issued, which may affect, among other things, our ability to use our net operating loss carry forwards, if any, and could result in the resignation or removal of our present officers and directors; and

 

may adversely affect prevailing market prices for our units, Class A common stock and/or warrants.

 

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Unlike some other similarly structured blank check companies, our initial stockholders will receive additional Class A Units of Opco if we issue shares to consummate an initial business combination.

 

The founder shares consist of Class B Units of Opco (and any Class A Units of Opco into which such Class B Units are converted) and a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock, which together will be exchangeable for shares of our Class A common stock after the time of our initial business combination on a one-for-one basis, subject to adjustment for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like and subject to further adjustment as provided herein. In the case that additional shares of our Class A common stock or equity-linked securities convertible or exercisable for shares of our Class A common stock are issued or deemed issued in excess of the amounts sold in our initial public offering and related to the closing of our initial business combination (other than the forward purchase securities), the number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco will convert may be adjusted so that, after all founder shares have been exchanged for shares of our Class A common stock, the aggregate number of shares of our Class A common stock received by holders in exchange for founder shares would equal 20% of our total outstanding common stock upon completion of our initial public offering plus the number of shares of our Class A common stock and equity-linked securities issued or deemed issued in connection with our initial business combination, excluding any shares of our Class A common stock or equity-linked securities issued, or to be issued, to any seller in our initial business combination, and excluding the sponsor shares. In addition, the number of outstanding shares of our Class B common stock will be adjusted through a stock split or stock dividend so that the total number of outstanding shares of our Class B common stock corresponds to the total number of Class A Units of Opco outstanding (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.) plus the total number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco are entitled to convert.

 

Resources could be wasted in researching business combinations that are not completed, which could materially adversely affect subsequent attempts to locate and acquire or merge with another business. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

We anticipate that the investigation of each specific target business and the negotiation, drafting and execution of relevant agreements, disclosure documents and other instruments will require substantial management time and attention and substantial costs for accountants, attorneys, consultants and others. If we decide not to complete a specific initial business combination, the costs incurred up to that point for the proposed transaction likely would not be recoverable. Furthermore, if we reach an agreement relating to a specific target business, we may fail to complete our initial business combination for any number of reasons including those beyond our control. Any such event will result in a loss to us of the related costs incurred which could materially adversely affect subsequent attempts to locate and acquire or merge with another business. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

We are dependent upon our officers and directors, and their loss could adversely affect our ability to operate.

 

Our operations are dependent upon a relatively small group of individuals and, in particular, our officers and directors. We believe that our success depends on the continued service of our officers and directors, at least until we have completed our initial business combination. In addition, our officers and directors are not required to commit any specified amount of time to our affairs and, accordingly, will have conflicts of interest in allocating their time among various business activities, including identifying potential business combinations and monitoring the related due diligence. We do not have an employment agreement with, or key-man insurance on the life of, any of our directors or officers. The unexpected loss of the services of one or more of our directors or officers could have a detrimental effect on us.

 

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Our ability to successfully effect our initial business combination and to be successful thereafter will be totally dependent upon the efforts of our key personnel, some of whom may join us following our initial business combination. The loss of key personnel could negatively impact the operations and profitability of our post-combination business.

 

Our ability to successfully effect our business combination is dependent upon the efforts of our key personnel. The role of our key personnel in the target business, however, cannot presently be ascertained. Although some of our key personnel may remain with the target business in senior management or advisory positions following our business combination, it is likely that some or all of the management of the target business will remain in place. While we intend to closely scrutinize any individuals we engage after our initial business combination, we cannot assure you that our assessment of these individuals will prove to be correct. These individuals may be unfamiliar with the requirements of operating a company regulated by the SEC, which could cause us to have to expend time and resources helping them become familiar with such requirements.

 

In addition, the officers and directors of an acquisition candidate may resign upon completion of our initial business combination. The departure of a business combination target’s key personnel could negatively impact the operations and profitability of our post-combination business. The role of an acquisition candidate’s key personnel upon the completion of our initial business combination cannot be ascertained at this time. Although we contemplate that certain members of an acquisition candidate’s management team will remain associated with the acquisition candidate following our initial business combination, it is possible that members of the management of an acquisition candidate will not wish to remain in place. The loss of key personnel could negatively impact the operations and profitability of our post-combination business.

 

Our key personnel may negotiate employment or consulting agreements with a target business in connection with a particular business combination, and a particular business combination may be conditioned on the retention or resignation of such key personnel. These agreements may provide for them to receive compensation following our business combination and as a result, may cause them to have conflicts of interest in determining whether a particular business combination is the most advantageous.

 

Our key personnel may be able to remain with our company after the completion of our business combination only if they are able to negotiate employment or consulting agreements in connection with the business combination. Such negotiations would take place simultaneously with the negotiation of the business combination and could provide for such individuals to receive compensation in the form of cash payments and/or our securities for services they would render to us after the completion of the business combination. Such negotiations also could make such key personnel’s retention or resignation a condition to any such agreement. The personal and financial interests of such individuals may influence their motivation in identifying and selecting a target business.

 

Our current officers may not remain in their positions following our business combination. We may have a limited ability to assess the management of a prospective target business and, as a result, may effect our initial business combination with a target business whose management may not have the skills, qualifications or abilities to manage a public company, which could, in turn, negatively impact the value of our stockholders’ investment in us.

 

When evaluating the desirability of effecting our initial business combination with a prospective target business, our ability to assess the target business’s management may be limited due to a lack of time, resources or information. Our assessment of the capabilities of the target business’s management, therefore, may prove to be incorrect and such management may lack the skills, qualifications or abilities we suspected. Should the target business’s management not possess the skills, qualifications or abilities necessary to manage a public company, the operations and profitability of the post-combination business may be negatively impacted. Accordingly, any stockholders who choose to remain stockholders following the business combination could suffer a reduction in the value of their securities. Such stockholders are unlikely to have a remedy for such reduction in value unless they are able to successfully claim that the reduction was due to the breach by our officers or directors of a duty of care or other fiduciary duty owed to them, or if they are able to successfully bring a private claim under securities laws that the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) relating to the business combination contained an actionable material misstatement or material omission.

 

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The officers and directors of an acquisition candidate may resign upon completion of our initial business combination. The loss of a business combination target’s key personnel could negatively impact the operations and profitability of our post-combination business.

 

The role of an acquisition candidate’s key personnel upon the completion of our initial business combination cannot be ascertained at this time. Although we contemplate that certain members of an acquisition candidate’s management team will remain associated with the acquisition candidate following our initial business combination, it is possible that members of the management of an acquisition candidate will not wish to remain in place.

 

Our officers and directors will allocate their time to other businesses thereby causing conflicts of interest in their determination as to how much time to devote to our affairs. This conflict of interest could have a negative impact on our ability to complete our initial business combination.

 

Our officers and directors are not required to, and will not, commit their full time to our affairs, which may result in a conflict of interest in allocating their time between our operations and our search for a business combination and their other businesses. We do not intend to have any full-time employees prior to the completion of our initial business combination. Each of our officers is engaged in several other business endeavors for which he may be entitled to substantial compensation, and our officers are not obligated to contribute any specific number of hours per week to our affairs. Our independent directors may also serve as officers or board members for other entities. If our officers’ and directors’ other business affairs require them to devote substantial amounts of time to such affairs in excess of their current commitment levels, it could limit their ability to devote time to our affairs which may have a negative impact on our ability to complete our initial business combination.

 

Certain of our officers and directors are now, and all of them may in the future become, affiliated with entities engaged in business activities similar to those intended to be conducted by us and, accordingly, may have conflicts of interest in allocating their time and determining to which entity a particular business opportunity should be presented.

 

Until we consummate our initial business combination, we are in the process of identifying and combining with one or more businesses. Our sponsor and officers and directors are, and may in the future become, affiliated with entities that are engaged in a similar business, including Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies and Rice II. Our officers and directors also may become aware of business opportunities which may be appropriate for presentation to us and the other entities to which they owe certain fiduciary or contractual duties.

 

Accordingly, they may have conflicts of interest in determining to which entity a particular business opportunity should be presented. These conflicts may not be resolved in our favor and a potential target business may be presented to another entity prior to its presentation to us. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that we renounce our interest in any corporate opportunity offered to any director or officer unless such opportunity is expressly offered to such person solely in his or her capacity as a director or officer of our company and such opportunity is one we are legally and contractually permitted to undertake and would otherwise be reasonable for us to pursue, and to the extent the director or officer is permitted to refer that opportunity to us without violating another legal obligation.

 

Our officers, directors, security holders and their respective affiliates may have competitive pecuniary interests that conflict with our interests.

 

We have not adopted a policy that expressly prohibits our directors, officers, security holders or affiliates from having a direct or indirect pecuniary or financial interest in any investment to be acquired or disposed of by us or in any transaction to which we are a party or have an interest. In fact, we may enter into a business combination with a target business that is affiliated with our sponsor, our directors or officers, although we do not intend to do so, or we may acquire a target business through an Affiliated Joint Acquisition with one or more affiliates of our sponsor, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies. We do not have a policy that expressly prohibits any such persons from engaging for their own account in business activities of the types conducted by us. Accordingly, such persons or entities may have a conflict between their interests and ours.

 

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In particular, members of our sponsor and its affiliates, including Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies and Rice II, are focused on investments in the energy industry. As a result, there may be substantial overlap between companies that would be a suitable business combination for us and companies that would make an attractive target for such affiliates.

 

We may engage in a business combination with one or more target businesses that have relationships with entities that may be affiliated with our sponsor, officers, directors or existing holders which may raise potential conflicts of interest.

 

In light of the involvement of our sponsor, officers and directors with other entities, we may decide to acquire one or more businesses affiliated with our sponsor, officers, directors or existing holders, including one or more portfolio companies of Rice Investment Group. Our officers and directors also serve as officers and board members for other entities. They may also have investments in target businesses. Such entities may compete with us for business combination opportunities. Although we will not be specifically focusing on, or targeting, any transaction with any affiliated entities, we would pursue such a transaction if we determined that such affiliated entity met our criteria for a business combination and such transaction was approved by a majority of our independent and disinterested directors. Despite our obligation to obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm that is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm regarding the fairness to our company from a financial point of view of a business combination with one or more domestic or international businesses affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, potential conflicts of interest still may exist and, as a result, the terms of the business combination may not be as advantageous to our public stockholders as they would be absent any conflicts of interest.

 

Moreover, we may pursue an Affiliated Joint Acquisition opportunity with one or more affiliates of our sponsor, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies. Any such parties may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the business combination by issuing to such parties a class of equity or equity-linked securities. Accordingly, such persons or entities may have a conflict between their interests and ours.

 

Since our sponsor, officers and directors will lose their entire investment in us if our business combination is not completed (other than with respect to sponsor shares and public shares they have acquired during or may acquire after our initial public offering), a conflict of interest may arise in determining whether a particular business combination target is appropriate for our initial business combination.

 

In September 2020, our Sponsor paid $25,000 to cover certain of our expenses in exchange for (i) 5,750,100 shares of our Class B common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, and (ii) 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock, par value $0.0001 per share. Also in September 2020, the Sponsor received 5,750,000 Class B Units of Opco (which are profits interest units only). In October 2020, the Sponsor forfeited 90,000 Class B Units of Opco, and 30,000 Class B Units of Opco were issued to each of the independent directors. The Sponsor transferred a corresponding number of shares of Class B common stock to the independent directors. In October 2020, the Company effected a dividend, resulting in an aggregate of (i) 6,181,350 shares of our Class B common stock, and (ii) 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock outstanding. All shares and associated amounts have been retroactively restated to reflect the dividend. Upon a liquidation of Opco, distributions generally will be made to the holders of Opco Units on a pro rata basis, subject to certain limitations with respect to the Class B Units of Opco, including that, prior to the completion of the initial business combination, such Class B Units will not be entitled to participate in a liquidating distribution. On October 26, 2020, the Company consummated its initial public offering of 23,725,000 units, including 2,225,000 units that were issued pursuant to the underwriters’ partial exercise of their over-allotment option, at $10.00 per unit, generating gross proceeds of approximately $237.3 million, and incurring offering costs of approximately $12.5 million, inclusive of $7.6 million in deferred underwriting commissions. Of the 23,725,000 units sold, affiliates of our Sponsor and Atlas Point Fund had purchased 1,980,000 units and 2,128,500 units at the initial public offering price. The founder shares will be worthless if we do not complete an initial business combination. The underwriters did not receive any underwriting discounts or commissions on the 1,980,000 Affiliated Units. Each unit consists of one share of Class A common stock and one-half of one redeemable warrant. Each whole Public Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one share of our Class A common stock at a price of $11.50 per share, subject to adjustment. The personal and financial interests of our officers and directors may influence their motivation in identifying and selecting a target business combination, completing an initial business combination and influencing the operation of the business following our initial business combination. This risk may become more acute as the 24-month anniversary of the closing of our initial public offering nears, which is the deadline for our completion of an initial business combination.

 

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We may issue notes or other debt securities, or otherwise incur substantial debt, to complete a business combination, which may adversely affect our leverage and financial condition and thus negatively impact the value of our stockholders’ investment in us.

 

We may choose to incur substantial debt to complete our business combination. We and our officers have agreed that we will not incur any indebtedness unless we have obtained from the lender a waiver of any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to the monies held in the trust account. As such, no issuance of debt will affect the per share amount available for redemption from the trust account. Nevertheless, the incurrence of debt could have a variety of negative effects, including:

 

default and foreclosure on our assets if our operating revenues after an initial business combination are insufficient to repay our debt obligations;

 

acceleration of our obligations to repay the indebtedness even if we make all principal and interest payments when due if we breach certain covenants that require the maintenance of certain financial ratios or reserves without a waiver or renegotiation of that covenant;

 

our immediate payment of all principal and accrued interest, if any, if the debt security is payable on demand;

 

our inability to obtain necessary additional financing if the debt security contains covenants restricting our ability to obtain such financing while the debt security is outstanding;

 

our inability to pay dividends on our common stock;

 

using a substantial portion of our cash flow to pay principal and interest on our debt, which will reduce the funds available for dividends on our common stock if declared, to pay expenses, make capital expenditures and acquisitions and fund other general corporate purposes;

 

limitations on our flexibility in planning for and reacting to changes in our business and in the industry in which we operate;

 

increased vulnerability to adverse changes in general economic, industry and competitive conditions and adverse changes in government regulation;

 

limitations on our ability to borrow additional amounts for expenses, capital expenditures, acquisitions, debt service requirements, and execution of our strategy; and

 

other disadvantages compared to our competitors who have less debt.

 

We may only be able to complete one business combination with the proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants, which will cause us to be solely dependent on a single business which may have a limited number of products or services. This lack of diversification may negatively impact our operations and profitability.

 

Of the net proceeds from our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants, up to approximately $237.3 million is available to complete our business combination and pay related fees and expenses. Of the up to approximately $237.3 million, approximately $1.0 million will be held outside the trust account for business, legal and accounting due diligence on prospective acquisitions and continuing general and administrative expenses.

 

We may effectuate our business combination with a single target business or multiple target businesses simultaneously or within a short period of time. However, we may not be able to effectuate our business combination with more than one target business because of various factors, including the existence of complex accounting issues and the requirement that we prepare and file pro forma financial statements with the SEC that present operating results and the financial condition of several target businesses as if they had been operated on a combined basis.

 

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By completing our initial business combination with only a single entity, our lack of diversification may subject us to numerous economic, competitive and regulatory developments. Further, we would not be able to diversify our operations or benefit from the possible spreading of risks or offsetting of losses, unlike other entities which may have the resources to complete several business combinations in different industries or different areas of a single industry. In addition, we are focusing our search for an initial business combination in a single industry. Accordingly, the prospects for our success may be:

 

solely dependent upon the performance of a single business, property or asset, or

 

dependent upon the development or market acceptance of a single or limited number of products, processes or services.

 

This lack of diversification may subject us to numerous economic, competitive and regulatory risks, any or all of which may have a substantial adverse impact upon the particular industry in which we may operate subsequent to our business combination.

 

We may attempt to simultaneously complete business combinations with multiple prospective targets, which may hinder our ability to complete our business combination and give rise to increased costs and risks that could negatively impact our operations and profitability.

 

If we determine to simultaneously acquire several businesses that are owned by different sellers, we will need for each of such sellers to agree that our purchase of its business is contingent on the simultaneous closings of the other business combinations, which may make it more difficult for us, and delay our ability, to complete our initial business combination. With multiple business combinations, we could also face additional risks, including additional burdens and costs with respect to possible multiple negotiations and due diligence investigations (if there are multiple sellers) and the additional risks associated with the subsequent assimilation of the operations and services or products of the acquired companies in a single operating business. If we are unable to adequately address these risks, it could negatively impact our profitability and results of operations.

 

We may attempt to complete our initial business combination with a private company about which little information is available, which may result in a business combination with a company that is not as profitable as we suspected, if at all.

 

In pursuing our business combination strategy, we may seek to effectuate our initial business combination with a privately held company. Very little public information generally exists about private companies, and we could be required to make our decision on whether to pursue a potential initial business combination on the basis of limited information, which may result in a business combination with a company that is not as profitable as we suspected, if at all.

 

Our management may not be able to maintain control of a target business after our initial business combination. We cannot provide assurance that, upon loss of control of a target business, new management will possess the skills, qualifications or abilities necessary to profitably operate such business.

 

We may structure a business combination so that we will control less than 100% of the equity interests or assets of a target business, but we will only complete such business combination if we control 50% or more of the outstanding voting securities of the target or otherwise are not required to register as an investment company under the Investment Company Act. We will not consider any transaction that does not meet such criteria. Even if we control 50% or more of the voting securities of the target, our stockholders prior to the business combination may collectively own a minority interest in the post business combination company, depending on valuations ascribed to the target and us in the business combination transaction. For example, we could pursue a transaction in which we issue a substantial number of new shares in exchange for all of the outstanding capital stock, shares or other equity interests of a target. In this case, we would acquire a 100% interest in the target. However, as a result of the issuance of a substantial number of new shares, our stockholders immediately prior to such transaction could own less than a majority of our outstanding shares of common stock subsequent to such transaction. In addition, other minority stockholders may subsequently combine their holdings resulting in a single person or group obtaining a larger share of the company’s stock than we initially acquired. Accordingly, this may make it more likely that our management will not be able to maintain control of the target business.

 

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We do not have a specified maximum redemption threshold. The absence of such a redemption threshold may make it possible for us to complete a business combination with which a substantial majority of our stockholders do not agree.

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation will not provide a specified maximum redemption threshold, except that in no event will we redeem our public shares in an amount that would cause our net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001 upon consummation of our initial business combination and after payment of underwriters’ fees and commissions (such that we are not subject to the SEC’s “penny stock” rules). As a result, we may be able to complete our business combination even though a substantial majority of our public stockholders do not agree with the transaction and have redeemed their shares or, if we seek stockholder approval of our initial business combination and do not conduct redemptions in connection with our business combination pursuant to the tender offer rules, have entered into privately negotiated agreements to sell their shares to our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers, directors, advisors or any of their affiliates. In the event the aggregate cash consideration we would be required to pay for all shares of our Class A common stock that are validly submitted for redemption plus any amount required to satisfy cash conditions pursuant to the terms of the proposed business combination exceed the aggregate amount of cash available to us, we will not complete the business combination or redeem any shares, all shares of our Class A common stock submitted for redemption will be returned to the holders thereof, and we instead may search for an alternate business combination.

 

The exercise price for the public warrants is higher than in some other blank check company offerings, and accordingly, the warrants are more likely to expire worthless.

 

The exercise price of the public warrants is higher than in some other blank check companies. For example, historically, the exercise price of a warrant was often a fraction of the purchase price of the units in the initial public offering. The exercise price for our public warrants is $11.50 per share, subject to adjustments as provided herein. As a result, the warrants are less likely to ever be in the money and more likely to expire worthless.

 

In order to effectuate our initial business combination, we may seek to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation or other governing instruments in a manner that will make it easier for us to complete our initial business combination but that our stockholders or warrantholders may not support.

 

In order to effectuate a business combination, we may amend various provisions of our charter and governing instruments, including the warrant agreement, the underwriting agreement relating to our initial public offering, the letter agreement among us and our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers and directors, and the registration rights agreement among us and our initial stockholders. These agreements contain various provisions that our public stockholders might deem to be material. While we do not expect our board to approve any amendment to any of these agreements prior to our initial business combination, it may be possible that our board, in exercising its business judgment and subject to its fiduciary duties, chooses to approve one or more amendments to any such agreement in connection with the consummation of our initial business combination. Except in relation to the charter, any such amendments would not require approval from our stockholders and may have an adverse effect on the value of an investment in our securities. We cannot assure you that we will not seek to amend our charter or other governing instruments or change our industry focus in order to effectuate our initial business combination.

 

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The provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that relate to our pre-business combination activity (and corresponding provisions of the agreement governing the release of funds from our trust account) may be amended with the approval of holders of 65% of our common stock, which is a lower amendment threshold than that of some other blank check companies. It may be easier for us, therefore, to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and the trust agreement to facilitate the completion of an initial business combination that some of our stockholders may not support.

 

Some other blank check companies have a provision in their charter which prohibits the amendment of certain of its provisions, including those which relate to a company’s pre-business combination activity, without approval by a certain percentage of the company’s stockholders. In those companies, amendment of these provisions requires approval by between 90% and 100% of the company’s public stockholders. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that any of its provisions (other than amendments relating to the election of directors, which require the approval of a majority of at least 90% of our common stock voting at a stockholder meeting) related to pre-business combination activity (including the requirement to deposit proceeds of our initial public offering and the private placement warrants into the trust account and not release such amounts except in specified circumstances, and to provide redemption rights to public stockholders as described herein) may be amended if approved by holders of 65% of our common stock entitled to vote thereon, and corresponding provisions of the trust agreement governing the release of funds from our trust account may be amended if approved by holders of 65% of our common stock entitled to vote thereon. In all other instances, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation may be amended by holders of a majority of our outstanding common stock entitled to vote thereon, subject to applicable provisions of the DGCL or applicable stock exchange rules. Our initial stockholders, who will collectively beneficially own 20% of the total outstanding common stock, will participate in any vote to amend our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and/or trust agreement and will have the discretion to vote in any manner they choose. As a result, we may be able to amend the provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation which govern our pre-business combination behavior more easily than some other blank check companies, and this may increase our ability to complete a business combination with which you do not agree. Our stockholders may pursue remedies against us for any breach of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation.

 

Our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers, and directors have agreed, pursuant to a written agreement with us, that they will not propose any amendment to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation that would affect the substance or timing of our obligation to redeem 100% of our public shares if we have not consummated an initial business combination within 24 months from the closing of our initial public offering, unless we provide our public stockholders with the opportunity to redeem their shares of our Class A common stock upon approval of any such amendment at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the trust account, including interest earned on the funds held in the trust account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco, divided by the number of then outstanding public shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.). These agreements are contained in a letter agreement that we have entered into with our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers, and directors. Our stockholders are not parties to, or third-party beneficiaries of, these agreements and, as a result, will not have the ability to pursue remedies against our sponsor, Atlas Point Fund, officers, and directors for any breach of these agreements. As a result, in the event of a breach, our stockholders would need to pursue a stockholder derivative action, subject to applicable law.

 

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We may be unable to obtain additional financing to complete our initial business combination or to fund the operations and growth of a target business, which could compel us to restructure or abandon a particular business combination. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless.

 

Although we believe that the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants and the forward purchase securities are sufficient to allow us to complete our initial business combination, we cannot ascertain the capital requirements for any particular transaction. If the net proceeds of our initial public offering and the sale of the private placement warrants and the forward purchase securities prove to be insufficient, either because of the size of our initial business combination, the depletion of the available net proceeds in search of a target business, the obligation to redeem for cash a significant number of shares from stockholders who elect redemption in connection with our initial business combination or the terms of negotiated transactions to purchase shares in connection with our initial business combination, or if Atlas Point Fund decides not to exercise its right to purchase all of the forward purchase securities, we may be required to seek additional financing or to abandon the proposed business combination. We cannot assure you that such financing will be available on acceptable terms, if at all. To the extent that additional financing proves to be unavailable when needed to complete our initial business combination, we would be compelled to either restructure the transaction or abandon that particular business combination and seek an alternative target business candidate. If we do not complete our initial business combination, our public stockholders may only receive their pro rata portion of the funds in the trust account that are available for distribution to public stockholders, and our warrants will expire worthless. In addition, even if we do not need additional financing to complete our business combination, we may require such financing to fund the operations or growth of the target business. The failure to secure additional financing could have a material adverse effect on the continued development or growth of the target business. None of our officers, directors or stockholders is required to provide any financing to us in connection with or after our business combination.

 

Our initial stockholders control the election of our board of directors until consummation of our initial business combination and hold a substantial interest in us. As a result, they elect all of our directors prior to our initial business combination and may exert a substantial influence on actions requiring a stockholder vote, potentially in a manner that you do not support.

 

After the closing of our initial public offering, our initial stockholders own shares representing 20% of our shares of common stock. In addition, the founder shares, all of which are held by our initial stockholders, will entitle the holders to elect all of our directors prior to our initial business combination. Holders of our public shares will have no right to vote on the election of directors during such time. These provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation may only be amended by a special resolution passed by a majority of at least 90% of our common stock voting at a stockholder meeting. As a result, you will not have any influence over the election of directors prior to our initial business combination. Accordingly, our initial stockholders may exert a substantial influence on actions requiring a stockholder vote, potentially in a manner that you do not support, including amendments to our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and approval of major corporate transactions. If our initial stockholders purchase any units in our initial public offering or if our initial stockholders purchase any additional shares of common stock in the aftermarket or in privately negotiated transactions, this would increase their control. Neither our initial stockholders nor, to our knowledge, any of our officers or directors have any current intention to purchase additional securities, other than as disclosed in our initial public offering. Factors that would be considered in making such additional purchases would include consideration of the current trading price of our Class A common stock. In addition, our board of directors, whose members were elected by our initial stockholders, is divided into three classes, each of which will generally serve for a term of three years with only one class of directors being elected in each year. We may not hold an annual meeting to elect new directors prior to the completion of our business combination, in which case all of the current directors will continue in office until at least the completion of the business combination. If there is an annual meeting, as a consequence of our “staggered” board of directors, only a minority of the board of directors will be considered for election and our initial stockholders, because of their ownership position, will have considerable influence regarding the outcome. Accordingly, our initial stockholders will continue to exert control at least until the completion of our business combination. The forward purchase securities will not be issued until completion of our initial business combination, and, accordingly, will not be included in any stockholder vote until such time.

 

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We may amend the terms of the warrants in a manner that may be adverse to holders of public warrants with the approval by the holders of at least 50% of the then outstanding public warrants. As a result, the exercise price of your warrants could be increased, the warrant could be converted into cash or stock (at a ratio different than initially provided), the exercise period could be shortened and the number of shares of our Class A common stock purchasable upon exercise of a warrant could be decreased, all without your approval.

 

Our warrants were issued in registered form under a warrant agreement between Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company, as warrant agent, and us. The warrant agreement provides that the terms of the warrants may be amended without the consent of any holder to cure any ambiguity or correct any defective provision or mistake (including to conform the terms of the warrants to those described herein), but requires the approval by the holders of at least 50% of the then outstanding public warrants to make any change that adversely affects the interests of the registered holders of public warrants and 50% of the registered holders of the private warrants to make any change to the terms of the private warrants. Accordingly, we may amend the terms of the public warrants in a manner adverse to a holder if holders of at least 50% of the then outstanding public warrants approve of such amendment. Although our ability to amend the terms of the public warrants with the consent of at least 50% of the then outstanding public warrants is unlimited, examples of such amendments could be amendments to, among other things, increase the exercise price of the warrants, convert the warrants into cash or stock (at a ratio different than initially provided), shorten the exercise period or decrease the number of shares of our Class A common stock purchasable upon exercise of a warrant.

 

We may redeem your unexpired warrants prior to their exercise at a time that is disadvantageous to you, thereby making your warrants worthless.

 

We have the ability to redeem outstanding warrants at any time after they become exercisable and prior to their expiration, at a price of $0.01 per warrant, provided that the last reported sales price of our Class A common stock equals or exceeds $18.00 per share (as adjusted for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like) for any 20 trading days within a 30 trading-day period ending on the third trading day prior to the date on which we give proper notice of such redemption and provided certain other conditions are met. If and when the warrants become redeemable by us, we may exercise our redemption right even if we are unable to register or qualify the underlying securities for sale under all applicable state securities laws. Redemption of the outstanding warrants could force you (i) to exercise your warrants and pay the exercise price therefor at a time when it may be disadvantageous for you to do so, (ii) to sell your warrants at the then-current market price when you might otherwise wish to hold your warrants or (iii) to accept the nominal redemption price which, at the time the outstanding warrants are called for redemption, is likely to be substantially less than the market value of your warrants. None of the private placement warrants will be redeemable by us so long as they are held by the sponsor, Atlas Point Fund or their permitted transferees.

 

In addition, we may redeem your warrants at any time after they become exercisable and prior to their expiration at a price of $0.10 per warrant upon a minimum of 30 days’ prior written notice of redemption provided that holders will be able to exercise their warrants prior to redemption for a number of shares of our Class A common stock determined based on the redemption date and the fair market value of our Class A common stock. Any such redemption may have similar consequences to a cash redemption described above. The value received upon exercise of the warrants (1) may be less than the value the holders would have received if they had exercised their warrants at a later time where the underlying stock price is higher and (2) may not compensate the holders for the value of the warrants because the number of shares of Class A common stock received is capped at 0.361 shares of Class A common stock per warrant (subject to adjustment) irrespective of the remaining life of the warrants.

 

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Our ability to require holders of our warrants to exercise such warrants on a cashless basis after we call the warrants for redemption or if there is no effective registration statement covering the Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of these warrants will cause holders to receive fewer shares of our Class A common stock upon their exercise of the warrants than they would have received had they been able to pay the exercise price of their warrants in cash.

 

If the shares of our Class A common stock are at the time of any exercise of a warrant not listed on a national securities exchange such that the shares of our Class A common stock satisfy the definition of a “covered security” under Section 18(b)(I) of the Securities Act, we may, at our option, require holders of public warrants who exercise their warrants to do so on a “cashless basis” in accordance with Section 3(a)(9) of the Securities Act and, in the event we so elect, we will not be required to file or maintain in effect a registration statement, but we will be required to use our best efforts to register or qualify the shares under applicable blue sky laws to the extent an exemption is not available. “Cashless exercise” means the warrant holder pays the exercise price by giving up some of the shares for which the warrant is being exercised, with those shares valued at the then current market price. Accordingly, each holder would pay the exercise price by surrendering the warrants for that number of shares of our Class A common stock equal to the quotient obtained by dividing (x) the product of the number of shares of our Class A common stock underlying the warrants, multiplied by the difference between the exercise price of the warrants and the “fair market value” by (y) the fair market value. The “fair market value” shall mean volume weighted average price of our Class A common stock as reported during 10 trading days ending on the third trading day prior to the date on which the notice of redemption is sent to the holders of warrants.

 

In addition, if a registration statement covering the shares of our Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the warrants is not effective within a specified period following the consummation of our initial business combination, warrantholders may, until such time as there is an effective registration statement and during any period when we shall have failed to maintain an effective registration statement, exercise warrants on a cashless basis, For purposes of calculating the number of shares issuable upon such cashless exercise, the “fair market value” of warrants shall be calculated using the volume weighted average sale price of the Class A common stock for the 10 trading days ending on the trading day prior to the date on which notice of exercise is received by the warrant agent.

 

If we choose to require holders to exercise their warrants on a cashless basis, which we may do at our sole discretion, or if holders elect to do so when there is no effective registration statement, the number of shares of our Class A common stock received by a holder upon exercise will be fewer than it would have been had such holder exercised his or her warrant for cash. For example, if the holder is exercising 875 public warrants at $11.50 per share through a cashless exercise when the shares of our Class A common stock have a fair market value per share of $17.50 per share, then upon the cashless exercise, the holder will receive 300 shares of our Class A common stock. The holder would have received 875 shares of our Class A common stock if the exercise price was paid in cash. This will have the effect of reducing the potential “upside” of the holder’s investment in our company because the warrant holder will hold a smaller number of shares of our Class A common stock upon a cashless exercise of the warrants they hold.

 

Our warrants and founder shares may have an adverse effect on the market price of our Class A common stock and make it more difficult to effectuate our business combination.

 

We issued warrants to purchase 11,862,500 shares of our Class A common stock as part of the units offered by our initial public offering and, simultaneously with the closing of our initial public offering, we issued in private placements an aggregate of 6,771,000 private placement warrants, each exercisable to purchase for $11.50 either one share of our Class A common stock or, in certain circumstances, one Class A Unit of Opco (and corresponding share of our Class B common stock). In addition, we may issue up to approximately 7.8 million shares of Class A common stock to Atlas Point Fund in connection with our initial business combination pursuant to the forward purchase agreement. The founder shares are exchangeable for shares of our Class A common stock on a one-for-one basis, subject to adjustment for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like and subject to further adjustment as set forth herein. In addition, if our sponsor makes any working capital loans, it may convert those loans into up to an additional 1,000,000 private placement warrants, at the price of $1.00 per warrant. To the extent we issue shares of our Class A common stock to effectuate a business combination, the potential for the issuance of a substantial number of additional shares of our Class A common stock upon exercise of these warrants and exchange rights could make us a less attractive acquisition vehicle to a target business. Any such issuance will increase the number of issued and outstanding shares of our Class A common stock and reduce the value of the shares of our Class A common stock issued to complete the business combination. Therefore, our warrants and founder shares may make it more difficult to effectuate a business combination or increase the cost of acquiring the target business.

 

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A provision of our warrant agreement may make it more difficult for us to consummate an initial business combination.

 

If we issue additional shares of common stock or equity-linked securities or capital raising purposes in connection with the closing of our initial business combination at a newly issued price of less than $9.20 per share of common stock, then the exercise price of the warrants will be adjusted to equal 115% of the newly issued price. This may make it more difficult for us to consummate an initial business combination with a target business.

 

The market for our securities may not develop, which would adversely affect the liquidity and price of our securities.

 

The price of our securities may vary significantly due to one or more potential business combinations and general market or economic conditions. Furthermore, an active trading market for our securities may never develop or, if developed, it may not be sustained. You may be unable to sell your securities unless a market can be established and sustained.

 

Because we must furnish our stockholders with target business financial statements, we may lose the ability to complete an otherwise advantageous initial business combination with some prospective target businesses.

 

The federal proxy rules require that a proxy statement with respect to a vote on a business combination meeting certain financial significance tests include target historical and/or pro forma financial statement disclosure. We will include the same financial statement disclosure in connection with our tender offer documents, whether or not they are required under the tender offer rules. These financial statements may be required to be prepared in accordance with, or be reconciled to, accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America, or GAAP, or international financial reporting standards as issued by the International Accounting Standards Board, or IFRS, depending on the circumstances and the historical financial statements may be required to be audited in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States), or PCAOB. These financial statement requirements may limit the pool of potential target businesses we may acquire because some targets may be unable to provide such financial statements in time for us to disclose such financial statements in accordance with federal proxy rules and complete our initial business combination within the prescribed time frame.

 

We are an emerging growth company and a smaller reporting company within the meaning of the Securities Act, and if we take advantage of certain exemptions from disclosure requirements available to emerging growth companies or smaller reporting companies, this could make our securities less attractive to investors and may make it more difficult to compare our performance with other public companies.

 

We are an “emerging growth company” within the meaning of the Securities Act, as modified by the JOBS Act, and we may take advantage of certain exemptions from various reporting requirements that are applicable to other public companies that are not emerging growth companies including, but not limited to, not being required to comply with the auditor attestation requirements of Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, reduced disclosure obligations regarding executive compensation in our periodic reports and proxy statements, and exemptions from the requirements of holding a nonbinding advisory vote on executive compensation and stockholder approval of any golden parachute payments not previously approved. As a result, our stockholders may not have access to certain information they may deem important. We could be an emerging growth company for up to five years, although circumstances could cause us to lose that status earlier, including if the market value of our Class A common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of any June 30 before that time, in which case we would no longer be an emerging growth company as of the following December 31. We cannot predict whether investors will find our securities less attractive because we will rely on these exemptions. If some investors find our securities less attractive as a result of our reliance on these exemptions, the trading prices of our securities may be lower than they otherwise would be, there may be a less active trading market for our securities and the trading prices of our securities may be more volatile.

 

Further, Section 102(b)(1) of the JOBS Act exempts emerging growth companies from being required to comply with new or revised financial accounting standards until private companies (that is, those that have not had a Securities Act registration statement declared effective or do not have a class of securities registered under the Exchange Act) are required to comply with the new or revised financial accounting standards. The JOBS Act provides that a company can elect to opt out of the extended transition period and comply with the requirements that apply to non-emerging growth companies but any such an election to opt out is irrevocable. We have elected not to opt out of such extended transition period, which means that when a standard is issued or revised and it has different application dates for public or private companies, we, as an emerging growth company, can adopt the new or revised standard at the time private companies adopt the new or revised standard. This may make comparison of our financial statements with another public company which is neither an emerging growth company nor an emerging growth company which has opted out of using the extended transition period difficult or impossible because of the potential differences in accounting standards used.

 

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Additionally, we are a “smaller reporting company” as defined in Item 10(f)(1) of Regulation S-K. Smaller reporting companies may take advantage of certain reduced disclosure obligations, including, among other things, providing only two years of audited financial statements. We will remain a smaller reporting company until the last day of the fiscal year in which (i) the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $250 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter or (ii) our annual revenues exceeded $100 million during such completed fiscal year and the market value of our common stock held by non-affiliates exceeds $700 million as of the end of that year’s second fiscal quarter. To the extent we take advantage of such reduced disclosure obligations, it may also make comparison of our financial statements with other public companies difficult or impossible.

 

Compliance obligations under the Sarbanes-Oxley Act may make it more difficult for us to effectuate our business combination, require substantial financial and management resources, and increase the time and costs of completing our initial business combination.

 

Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act requires that we evaluate and report on our system of internal controls beginning with our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ending December 31, 2021. Only in the event we are deemed to be a large accelerated filer or an accelerated filer will we be required to comply with the independent registered public accounting firm attestation requirement on our internal control over financial reporting. Further, for as long as we remain an emerging growth company, we will not be required to comply with the independent registered public accounting firm attestation requirement on our internal control over financial reporting. The fact that we are a blank check company makes compliance with the requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act particularly burdensome for us as compared to other public companies because a target business with which we seek to complete our business combination may not be in compliance with the provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act regarding adequacy of its internal controls. The development of the internal control of any such entity to achieve compliance with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act may increase the time and costs necessary to complete any such acquisition.

 

Provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and Delaware law may inhibit a takeover of us, which could limit the price investors might be willing to pay in the future for our Class A common stock and could entrench management.

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation contains provisions that may discourage unsolicited takeover proposals that stockholders may consider to be in their best interests. These provisions include a staggered board of directors and the ability of the board of directors to designate the terms of and issue new series of preferred stock, which may make the removal of management more difficult and may discourage transactions that otherwise could involve payment of a premium over prevailing market prices for our securities.

 

We are also subject to anti-takeover provisions under Delaware law, which could delay or prevent a change of control. Together these provisions may make the removal of management more difficult and may discourage transactions that otherwise could involve payment of a premium over prevailing market prices for our securities.

 

Provisions in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation and Delaware law may have the effect of discouraging lawsuits against our directors and officers.

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation requires, to the fullest extent permitted by law, that derivative actions brought in our name, actions against directors, officers and employees for breach of fiduciary duty and other similar actions (other than actions arising under the Securities Act or the Exchange Act) may be brought only in the Court of Chancery in the State of Delaware (or, if such court does not have subject matter jurisdiction thereof, any other court located in the State of Delaware with subject matter jurisdiction) and, if brought outside of Delaware, the stockholder bringing such suit will be deemed to have consented to service of process on such stockholder’s counsel. This provision may limit a stockholder’s ability to bring a claim in a judicial forum that it finds favorable for disputes with us and our directors, officers or other employees and may have the effect of discouraging lawsuits against our directors and officers.

 

Cyber incidents or attacks directed at us could result in information theft, data corruption, operational disruption and/or financial loss.

 

We depend on digital technologies, including information systems, infrastructure and cloud applications and services, including those of third parties with which we may deal. Sophisticated and deliberate attacks on, or security breaches in, our systems or infrastructure, or the systems or infrastructure of third parties or the cloud, could lead to corruption or misappropriation of our assets, proprietary information and sensitive or confidential data. As an early stage company without significant investments in data security protection, we may not be sufficiently protected against such occurrences. We may not have sufficient resources to adequately protect against, or to investigate and remediate any vulnerability to, cyber incidents. It is possible that any of these occurrences, or a combination of them, could have adverse consequences on our business and lead to financial loss.

 

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If we pursue a target business with operations or opportunities outside of the United States for our initial business combination, we may face additional burdens in connection with investigating, agreeing to and completing such initial business combination, and if we effect such initial business combination, we would be subject to a variety of additional risks that may negatively impact our operations.

 

If we pursue a target a company with operations or opportunities outside of the United States for our initial business combination, we would be subject to risks associated with cross-border business combinations, including in connection with investigating, agreeing to and completing our initial business combination, conducting due diligence in a foreign jurisdiction, having such transaction approved by any local governments, regulators or agencies and changes in the purchase price based on fluctuations in foreign exchange rates.

 

If we effect our initial business combination with such a company, we would be subject to any special considerations or risks associated with companies operating in an international setting, including any of the following:

 

higher costs, complexity and difficulties inherent in executing cross-border transactions, managing cross-border business operations, and complying with different commercial and legal requirements of overseas markets;

 

rules and regulations regarding currency redemption;

 

laws governing the manner in which future business combinations may be effected;

 

exchange listing and/or delisting requirements;

 

tariffs and trade barriers;

 

regulations related to customs and import/export matters;

 

local or regional economic policies and market conditions;

 

unexpected changes in regulatory requirements;

 

longer payment cycles;

 

tax issues, including limits on our ability to change our tax residence from the United States, complex withholding or other tax regimes which may apply in connection with our business combination or to our structure following our business combination, variations in tax laws as compared to the United States, and potential changes in the applicable tax laws in the United States and/or relevant non-U.S. jurisdictions;

 

currency fluctuations and exchange controls;

 

rates of inflation;

 

challenges in collecting accounts receivable;

 

cultural and language differences;

 

employment regulations;

 

underdeveloped or unpredictable legal or regulatory systems;

 

49

 

 

corruption;

 

protection of intellectual property;

 

social unrest, crime, strikes, riots and civil disturbances;

 

regime changes and political upheaval;

 

terrorist attacks and wars; and

 

deterioration of political relations with the United States.

 

We may not be able to adequately address these additional risks. If we were unable to do so, we may be unable to complete such initial business combination, or, if we complete such combination, our operations might suffer, either of which may adversely impact our business, financial condition and results of operations.

 

Our initial business combination and our structure thereafter may not be tax-efficient to our stockholders and warrantholders. As a result of our business combination, our tax obligations may be more complex, burdensome and uncertain.

 

Although we will attempt to structure our initial business combination in a tax-efficient manner, tax structuring considerations are complex, the relevant facts and law are uncertain and may change, and we may prioritize commercial and other considerations over tax considerations. For example, in connection with our initial business combination and subject to requisite stockholder approval, we may structure our business combination in a manner that requires stockholders and/or warrantholders to recognize gain or income for tax purposes. We do not intend to make any cash distributions to stockholders or warrantholders to pay taxes in connection with our business combination or thereafter. Accordingly, a stockholder or a warrant holder may need to satisfy any liability resulting from our initial business combination with cash from its own funds or by selling all or a portion of such holder’s shares or warrants. In addition, we may effect a business combination with a target company in another jurisdiction or reincorporate in a different jurisdiction (including, but not limited to, the jurisdiction in which the target company or business is located). As a result, stockholders and warrantholders may be subject to additional income, withholding or other taxes with respect to their ownership of us after our initial business combination.

 

In addition, we may effect a business combination with a target company that has business operations outside of the United States, and possibly, business operations in multiple jurisdictions. If we effect such a business combination, we could be subject to significant income, withholding and other tax obligations in a number of jurisdictions with respect to income, operations and subsidiaries related to those jurisdictions. Due to the complexity of tax obligations and filings in other jurisdictions, we may have a heightened risk related to audits or examinations by taxing authorities. This additional complexity and risk could have an adverse effect on our after-tax profitability and financial condition.

 

Our organizational structure confers certain benefits upon our initial stockholders that will not benefit the holders of our Class A common stock to the same extent as it will benefit our initial stockholders.

 

We are a holding company and will not have material assets other than our ownership of Opco Units. Subject to the obligation of Opco to make tax distributions and to reimburse us for our corporate and other overhead expenses, we will have the right to determine whether to cause Opco to make non-liquidating distributions, and the amount of any such distributions. We do not anticipate causing Opco to make any such distributions (other than tax distributions) to holders of Opco Units (including Rice Acquisition Corp.) prior to our initial business combination, other than required redemptions of Class A Units of Opco held by us in connection with a redemption of public shares. If Opco makes distributions after our initial business combination, the initial stockholders will be entitled to receive equivalent distributions from Opco on a pro rata basis. However, because we must pay taxes, amounts we may distribute as dividends to holders of our Class A common stock are expected to be less on a per share basis than the amounts distributed by Opco to the initial stockholders on a per unit basis.

 

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If our management following our initial business combination is unfamiliar with United States securities laws, they may have to expend time and resources becoming familiar with such laws, which could lead to various regulatory issues.

 

Following our initial business combination, our management may resign from their positions as officers or directors of the company and the management of the target business at the time of the business combination will remain in place. Management of the target business may not be familiar with United States securities laws. If new management is unfamiliar with United States securities laws, they may have to expend time and resources becoming familiar with such laws. This could be expensive and time-consuming and could lead to various regulatory issues which may adversely affect our operations.

 

After our initial business combination, substantially all of our assets may be located in a foreign country and substantially all of our revenue will be derived from our operations in such country. Accordingly, our results of operations and prospects will be subject, to a significant extent, to the economic, political and legal policies, developments and conditions in the country in which we operate.

 

The economic, political and social conditions, as well as government policies, of the country in which our operations are located could affect our business. Economic growth could be uneven, both geographically and among various sectors of the economy and such growth may not be sustained in the future. If in the future such country’s economy experiences a downturn or grows at a slower rate than expected, there may be less demand for spending in certain industries. A decrease in demand for spending in certain industries could materially and adversely affect our ability to find an attractive target business with which to consummate our initial business combination and if we effect our initial business combination, the ability of that target business to become profitable.

 

Exchange rate fluctuations and currency policies may cause a target business’ ability to succeed in the international markets to be diminished

 

In the event we acquire a non-U.S. target, all revenues and income would likely be received in a foreign currency, and the dollar equivalent of our net assets and distributions, if any, could be adversely affected by reductions in the value of the local currency. The value of the currencies in non-U.S. regions fluctuates and is affected by, among other things, changes in political and economic conditions. Any change in the relative value of such currency against our reporting currency may affect the attractiveness of any target business or, following consummation of our initial business combination, our financial condition and results of operations. Additionally, if a currency appreciates in value against the dollar prior to the consummation of our initial business combination, the cost of a target business as measured in dollars will increase, which may make it less likely that we are able to consummate such transaction.

 

Item 1B.Unresolved Staff Comments

 

None.

 

Item 2.Properties

 

Our executive offices are located at 102 East Main Street, Second Story, Carnegie, Pennsylvania 15106, and our telephone number is (713) 446-6259. The cost for our use of this space is included in the $10,000 per month fee we will pay to our sponsor for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services. We consider our current office space adequate for our current operations.

 

Item 3.Legal Proceedings

 

To the knowledge of our management, there is no material litigation currently pending or contemplated against us, any of our officers or directors in their capacity as such or against any of our property.

 

Item 4.Mine Safety Disclosures

 

Not applicable.

 

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PART II

 

Item 5.Market for Registrant’s Common Equity, Related Stockholder Matters and Issuer Purchases of Equity Securities

 

(a)Market Information

 

Our units, shares of Class A common stock and warrants are each traded on the NYSE under the symbol “RICE.U”, “RICE” and “RICE WS” respectively. Our units commenced public trading on October 22, 2020. Our shares of Class A common stock and warrants began separate trading on December 14, 2020.

 

(b)Holders

 

On March 19, 2021, there was 1 holder of record of our units, 2 holders of record of our shares of Class A common stock, 5 holders of record of our shares of Class B common stock and 3 holders of record of our warrants.

 

(c)Dividends

 

We have not paid any cash dividends on our common stock to date and do not intend to pay cash dividends prior to the completion of an initial business combination. The payment of cash dividends in the future will be dependent upon our revenues and earnings, if any, capital requirements and general financial conditions subsequent to completion of an initial business combination. The payment of any cash dividends subsequent to an initial business combination will be within the discretion of our board of directors at such time. In addition, our board of directors is not currently contemplating and does not anticipate declaring any stock dividends in the foreseeable future. Further, if we incur any indebtedness, our ability to declare dividends may be limited by restrictive covenants we may agree to in connection therewith.

 

(d)Securities Authorized for Issuance Under Equity Compensation Plans

 

None.

 

(e)Performance Graph

 

Not applicable.

 

(f)Recent Sales of Unregistered Securities; Use of Proceeds from Registered Offerings

 

On September 2, 2020, Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC, our sponsor, received 5,750,000 Class B Units of Opco for no consideration and purchased 5,750,000 corresponding shares of our Class B common stock, 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock and 100 Class A Units of Opco and 100 corresponding shares of our Class B common stock for an aggregate of $26,000. The number of founder shares was determined based on the expectation that the founder shares would represent 20% of the total outstanding equity after our initial public offering (excluding the sponsor shares). Such securities were issued in connection with our organization pursuant to the exemption from registration contained in Section 4(a)(2) of the Securities Act.

 

Our sponsor is an accredited investor for purposes of Rule 501 of Regulation D under the Securities Act. The sole business of our sponsor was to act as our sponsor in connection with our initial public offering.

 

In addition, our sponsor purchased from us an aggregate of 6,093,900 private placement warrants at a purchase price of $1.00 per warrant (for an aggregate purchase price of $6,093,900). Atlas Point Fund also purchased 677,100 private placement warrants at a purchase price of $1.00 per warrant (for an aggregate purchase price of $677,100). These purchases took place on a private placement basis simultaneously with the completion of our initial public offering. These issuances were made pursuant to the exemption from registration contained in Section 4(a)(2) of the Securities Act. No underwriting discounts or commissions were paid with respect to such sales. Each private placement warrant entitles the holder to purchase for $11.50 either one share of our Class A common stock or, so long as they are held by our initial stockholders or their permitted transferees, one Class A Unit of Opco (and corresponding share of our Class B common stock). The private placement warrants (including the Class A common stock or Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) issuable upon exercise thereof) may not, subject to certain limited exceptions, be transferred, assigned or sold by the holder until 30 days after the completion of our initial business combination.

 

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On October 26, 2020, the Company consummated its initial public offering of 23,725,000 units, including 2,225,000 units that were issued pursuant to the underwriters’ partial exercise of their over-allotment option, at $10.00 per unit, generating gross proceeds of approximately $237.3 million, and incurring offering costs of approximately $12.5 million, inclusive of $7.6 million in deferred underwriting commissions. Of the 23,725,000 units sold, affiliates of our Sponsor and Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC (“Atlas Point Fund”) had purchased 1,980,000 units (the “Affiliated Units”) and 2,128,500 units (the “Atlas Units”), respectively, at the initial public offering price. The underwriters did not receive any underwriting discounts or commissions on the 1,980,000 Affiliated Units. Each unit consists of one share of Class A common stock and one-half of one redeemable warrant (each, a “Public Warrant”). Each whole Public Warrant entitles the holder to purchase one share of our Class A common stock at a price of $11.50 per share, subject to adjustment.

 

Simultaneously with the closing of our initial public offering, we consummated the private placement (“Private Placement”) of 6,771,000 warrants (each, a “Private Placement Warrant” and collectively, the “Private Placement Warrants”) to the Sponsor and Atlas Point Fund, at a price of $1.00 per Private Placement Warrant, generating gross proceeds of approximately $6.8 million. Each Private Placement Warrant is exercisable to purchase one share of our Class A common stock or, in certain circumstances, one Class A Unit of Opco together with a corresponding number of shares of our non-economic Class B common stock, subject to certain adjustments.

 

(g)Purchases of Equity Securities by the Issuer and Affiliated Purchasers

 

None.

 

Item 6.Selected Financial Data

 

Not applicable.

 

Item 7.Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

 

References to the “Company,” “our,” “us” or “we” refer to Rice Acquisition Corp. The following discussion and analysis of the Company’s financial condition and results of operations should be read in conjunction with the financial statements and the notes thereto contained elsewhere in this Report. Certain information contained in the discussion and analysis set forth below includes forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties.

 

Overview

 

We are a blank check company incorporated in Delaware on September 1, 2020 for the purpose of effecting a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses (the “Business Combination”). Our sponsor is Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC, a Delaware limited liability company (“Sponsor”).

 

The registration statement for our initial public offering (“Initial Public Offering”) was declared effective on October 21, 2020. On October 26, 2020, we consummated the Initial Public Offering of 23,725,000 units (each, a “Unit” and collectively, the “Units”), including 2,225,000 additional Units that were issued pursuant to the underwriters’ partial exercise of their over-allotment option (the “Over-Allotment Units”), at $10.00 per Unit, generating gross proceeds of approximately $237.3 million, and incurring offering costs of approximately $12.5 million, inclusive of $7.6 million in deferred underwriting commissions.

 

Simultaneously with the closing of the Initial Public Offering, we consummated the private placement (“Private Placement”) of 6,771,000 warrants (each, a “Private Placement Warrant” and collectively, the “Private Placement Warrants”) to our Sponsor and Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC (“Atlas Point Fund”), at a price of $1.00 per Private Placement Warrant, generating gross proceeds of approximately $6.8 million. Each Private Placement Warrant is exercisable to purchase one share of Rice’s Class A common stock or, in certain circumstances, one Class A Unit of Opco together with a corresponding number of shares of Rice’s non-economic Class B common stock.

 

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Following the Initial Public Offering, our public stockholders hold a direct economic equity ownership interest in Rice in the form of shares of Class A common stock, and an indirect ownership interest in Opco through Rice’s ownership of Class A Units of Opco. By contrast, the Initial Stockholders (our Sponsor, Atlas Point Fund and our officers and directors) hold direct economic interests in Opco in the form of Class B Units and a corresponding non-economic voting equity interest in Rice in the form of shares of Class B common stock, as well as a small direct interest through the Sponsor Shares (as defined below). Sponsor Shares were purchased for $10.00 each and, in the absence of an initial Business Combination, will generally participate in liquidation or other payments on a pari passu basis with the Public Shares (as defined below). However, given the relatively de minimis number of Sponsor Shares relative to Public Shares, in many cases the economic, governance or other effects of the sponsor shares are not material to the holders of Class A common stock or warrants, and for simplicity, portions of this disclosure may not fully describe or reflect these immaterial effects.

 

Upon the closing of the Initial Public Offering and the Private Placement, approximately $237.3 million of the net proceeds of the sale of the Units in the Initial Public Offering and the sale of the Private Placement Warrants in the Private Placement were placed in a trust account (“Trust Account”) located in the United States with Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company acting as trustee, and invested only in U.S. “government securities” within the meaning of Section 2(a)(16) of the Investment Company Act having a maturity of 185 days or less or in money market funds meeting certain conditions under Rule 2a-7 promulgated under the Investment Company Act which invest only in direct U.S. government treasury obligations, as determined by us, until the earlier of: (i) the completion of a Business Combination and (ii) the distribution of the Trust Account.

 

If we are unable to complete a Business Combination within 24 months from the closing of the Initial Public Offering, or October 26, 2022, we will (i) cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up, (ii) as promptly as reasonably possible but not more than ten business days thereafter, redeem the Public Shares, at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the Trust Account including interest earned on the funds held in the Trust Account and not previously released to pay our franchise and income taxes (less up to $100,000 of interest to pay dissolution expenses), divided by the number of then outstanding Public Shares and Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice), which redemption will completely extinguish Public Stockholders’ rights as stockholders (including the right to receive further liquidating distributions, if any), subject to applicable law, and (iii) as promptly as reasonably possible following such redemption, subject to the approval of the remaining stockholders and the board of directors, dissolve and liquidate, subject in each case to our obligations under Delaware law to provide for claims of creditors and the requirements of other applicable law.

 

Liquidity and Capital Resources

 

As of December 31, 2020, we had approximately $1.3 million in our operating bank account and working capital of approximately $1.6 million.

 

Our liquidity needs to date had been satisfied through the payment of $26,000 from our Sponsor to purchase the Founder Shares and Sponsor Shares, a loan under a note agreement with our Sponsor of approximately $44,000 as of December 31, 2020 (the “Note”), and the net proceeds from the consummation of the Private Placement not held in the Trust Account. The Note was paid in full as of November 10, 2020. In addition, in order to finance transaction costs in connection with a Business Combination, our officers, directors and Sponsor may, but are not obligated to, provide us working capital loans. As of December 31, 2020, there were no amounts outstanding under any working capital loans.

 

Based on the foregoing, management believes that we will have sufficient working capital and borrowing capacity to meet its needs through the earlier of the consummation of a Business Combination or one year from this filing. Over this time period, the Company will be using these funds held outside of the Trust Account for paying existing accounts payable, identifying and evaluating prospective initial Business Combination candidates, performing due diligence on prospective target businesses, paying for travel expenditures, selecting the target business to merge with or acquire, and structuring, negotiating and consummating the Business Combination.

 

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Results of Operations

 

Our entire activity since inception through December 31, 2020 related to our formation, the preparation for the Initial Public Offering, and since the closing of the Initial Public Offering, the search for a prospective initial Business Combination. We have neither engaged in any operations nor generated any revenues to date. We will not generate any operating revenues until after completion of our initial Business Combination. We will generate non-operating income in the form of interest income on cash and cash equivalents. We expect to incur increased expenses as a result of being a public company (for legal, financial reporting, accounting and auditing compliance), as well as for due diligence expenses.

 

For the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020, we had net loss of approximately $325,000, which consisted of approximately $291,000 in general and administrative expenses and approximately $65,000 in franchise tax expense, which was partially offset by an approximately $32,000 of net gains on investments held in Trust Account.

 

Contractual Obligations

 

We do not have any long-term debt obligations, capital lease obligations, operating lease obligations, purchase obligations or long-term liabilities.

 

On October 21, 2020, we entered into an Administrative Services Agreement pursuant to which we have agreed to cause Opco to pay the Sponsor a total of $10,000 per month for office space, utilities and administrative support. Upon completion of the Initial Business Combination or our liquidation, the agreement will terminate.

 

The underwriters of the Initial Public Offering were entitled to underwriting discounts and commissions of 5.5%, of which 2.0% (approximately $4.3 million) was paid at the closing of the Initial Public Offering and 3.5% (approximately $7.6 million) was deferred. The deferred underwriting discounts and commissions will become payable to the underwriters upon the consummation of the Initial Business Combination and will be paid from the amounts held in the Trust Account. The underwriters are not entitled to any interest accrued on the deferred underwriting discounts and commissions.

 

Critical Accounting Policies

 

This management’s discussion and analysis of our financial condition and results of operations is based on our financial statements, which have been prepared in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. The preparation of our financial statements requires us to make estimates and judgments that affect the reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses and the disclosure of contingent assets and liabilities in our financial statements. On an ongoing basis, we evaluate our estimates and judgments, including those related to fair value of financial instruments and accrued expenses. We base our estimates on historical experience, known trends and events and various other factors that we believe to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities that are not readily apparent from other sources. Actual results may differ from these estimates under different assumptions or conditions. The Company has identified the following as its critical accounting policies:

 

Class A Ordinary Shares Subject to Possible Redemption

 

We account for our Class A common stock subject to possible redemption in accordance with the guidance in FASB ASC Topic 480 “Distinguishing Liabilities from Equity.” Shares of Class A common stock subject to mandatory redemption (if any) are classified as liability instruments and are measured at fair value. Shares of conditionally redeemable Class A common stock (including Class A common stock that feature redemption rights that are either within the control of the holder or subject to redemption upon the occurrence of uncertain events not solely within our control) are classified as temporary equity. At all other times, shares of Class A common stock are classified as stockholders’ equity. Our Class A common stock features certain redemption rights that are considered to be outside of our control and subject to the occurrence of uncertain future events. Accordingly, as of December 31, 2020, an aggregate of 21,596,500 shares of Class A common stock subject to possible redemption are presented as temporary equity, outside of the stockholders’ equity section of our consolidated balance sheet.

 

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Net Income (Loss) Per Common Share

 

Net loss per share of common stock is computed by dividing net loss applicable to stockholders by the weighted average number of shares of common stock outstanding during the period. We have not considered the effect of the warrants sold in the Initial Public Offering and Private Placement to purchase an aggregate of 18,633,500 shares of Class A common stock in the calculation of diluted earnings per share, since their inclusion would be anti-dilutive under the treasury stock method. As a result, diluted earnings per common share is the same as basic earnings per common share for the period presented.

 

Our statement of operations includes a presentation of income per share for common stock subject to redemption in a manner similar to the two-class method of income per share. Net income per share, basic and diluted for Class A common stock is calculated by dividing the net gain from investments held in the Trust Account of approximately $32,000, net of applicable franchise taxes of approximately $32,000 for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020, by the weighted average number of shares of Class A common stock outstanding for the period. Net loss per share, basic and diluted for Class B common stock for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020 is calculated by dividing general and administration expenses of approximately $291,000 and franchise taxes of approximately $33,000, net of noncontrolling interest of approximately $12,000, resulting in a net loss of approximately $312,000, by the weighted average number of Class B common stock outstanding for the period.

 

Recent Accounting Pronouncements

 

Our management does not believe that any recently issued, but not yet effective, accounting standards if currently adopted would have a material effect on the accompanying financial statements.

 

Off-Balance Sheet Arrangements

 

As of December 31, 2020, we did not have any off-balance sheet arrangements as defined in Item 303(a)(4)(ii) of Regulation S-K.

 

Inflation

 

We do not believe that inflation had a material impact on our business, revenues or operating results during the period presented.

 

JOBS Act

 

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 (the “JOBS Act”) contains provisions that, among other things, relax certain reporting requirements for qualifying public companies. We qualify as an “emerging growth company” and under the JOBS Act are allowed to comply with new or revised accounting pronouncements based on the effective date for private (not publicly traded) companies. We are electing to delay the adoption of new or revised accounting standards, and as a result, we may not comply with new or revised accounting standards on the relevant dates on which adoption of such standards is required for non-emerging growth companies. As a result, the financial statements may not be comparable to companies that comply with new or revised accounting pronouncements as of public company effective dates.

 

Additionally, we are in the process of evaluating the benefits of relying on the other reduced reporting requirements provided by the JOBS Act. Subject to certain conditions set forth in the JOBS Act, if, as an “emerging growth company,” we choose to rely on such exemptions we may not be required to, among other things, (i) provide an auditor’s attestation report on our system of internal controls over financial reporting pursuant to Section 404, (ii) provide all of the compensation disclosure that may be required of non-emerging growth public companies under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, (iii) comply with any requirement that may be adopted by the PCAOB regarding mandatory audit firm rotation or a supplement to the auditor’s report providing additional information about the audit and the financial statements (auditor discussion and analysis) and (iv) disclose certain executive compensation related items such as the correlation between executive compensation and performance and comparisons of the CEO’s compensation to median employee compensation. These exemptions will apply for a period of five years following the completion of our Initial Public Offering or until we are no longer an “emerging growth company,” whichever is earlier.

 

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Item 7A.Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk

 

We are a smaller reporting company as defined by Rule 12b-2 of the Exchange Act and are not required to provide the information otherwise required under this item.

 

Item 8.Consolidated Financial Statements And Supplementary Data

 

This information appears following Item 15 of this Annual Report on Form 10-K and is incorporated herein by reference.

 

Item 9.Changes in and Disagreements with Accountants on Accounting and Financial Disclosure

 

None.

 

Item 9A.Controls and Procedures

 

Evaluation of Disclosure Controls and Procedures

 

Disclosure controls are procedures that are designed with the objective of ensuring that information required to be disclosed in our reports filed under the Exchange Act, such as this Report, is recorded, processed, summarized, and reported within the time period specified in the SEC’s rules and forms. Disclosure controls are also designed with the objective of ensuring that such information is accumulated and communicated to our management, including the chief executive officer and chief financial officer, as appropriate to allow timely decisions regarding required disclosure. Our management evaluated, with the participation of our principal executive officer and principal financial and accounting officer (our “Certifying Officers”), the effectiveness of our disclosure controls and procedures as of December 31, 2020, pursuant to Rule 13a-15(b) under the Exchange Act. Based upon that evaluation, our Certifying Officers concluded that, as of December 31, 2020, our disclosure controls and procedures were effective.

 

We do not expect that our disclosure controls and procedures will prevent all errors and all instances of fraud. Disclosure controls and procedures, no matter how well conceived and operated, can provide only reasonable, not absolute, assurance that the objectives of the disclosure controls and procedures are met. Further, the design of disclosure controls and procedures must reflect the fact that there are resource constraints, and the benefits must be considered relative to their costs. Because of the inherent limitations in all disclosure controls and procedures, no evaluation of disclosure controls and procedures can provide absolute assurance that we have detected all our control deficiencies and instances of fraud, if any. The design of disclosure controls and procedures also is based partly on certain assumptions about the likelihood of future events, and there can be no assurance that any design will succeed in achieving its stated goals under all potential future conditions.

 

Management’s Report on Internal Controls Over Financial Reporting

 

This Annual Report on Form 10-K does not include a report of management’s assessment regarding internal control over financial reporting or an attestation report of our independent registered public accounting firm due to a transition period established by rules of the SEC for newly public companies.

 

Changes in Internal Control over Financial Reporting

 

There were no changes in our internal control over financial reporting (as such term is defined in Rules 13a-15(f) and 15d-15(f) of the Exchange Act) during the most recent fiscal quarter that have materially affected, or are reasonably likely to materially affect, our internal control over financial reporting.

 

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PART III

 

Item 10.Directors, Executive Officers and Corporate Governance

 

Our officers and directors are as follows:

 

Name

 

Age

 

Position

Daniel Joseph Rice, IV*   40   Chief Executive Officer and Director
J. Kyle Derham*   33   Chief Financial Officer and Director
James Wilmot Rogers*   40   Chief Accounting Officer
Kathryn Jackson   63   Independent Director
Joseph Malchow   35   Independent Director
James Torgerson   68   Independent Director

 

 

*Denotes an executive officer.

 

Daniel Joseph Rice, IV — Chief Executive Officer and director. Mr. Rice has over 15 years of experience in the energy industry. Mr. Rice is also the Chief Executive Officer and a director of Rice II. Mr. Rice is a Partner of Rice Investment Group and served as Chief Executive Officer of Rice Energy Inc. (“Rice Energy”) from October 2013 through the completion of its acquisition by EQT Corporation (“EQT”) in November 2017. Prior to his role as Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Rice served as Chief Operating Officer of Rice Energy from October 2012 through September 2013 and as Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Rice Energy from October 2008 through September 2012. Mr. Rice oversaw Rice Energy’s growth from start-up through its $1 billion initial public offering in 2014 and eventual $8.2 billion sale to EQT in 2017. Mr. Rice also oversaw the creation and growth of Rice Midstream Partners LP (“Rice Midstream”), which was acquired by EQT Midstream Partners, LP for $2.4 billion in 2018. Mr. Rice established Rice Energy’s strategic framework for value creation, which yielded success for its shareholders and employees. He has utilized his operating and growth strategy formulation experience as the founder of Rice Energy to help portfolio companies of Rice Investment Group to refine and optimize their business strategies in order to profitably grow. Mr. Rice currently serves on the board of directors of EQT, and he recently joined the board of Whiting Petroleum in August 2020. Prior to joining Rice Energy, he was an investment banker for Tudor Pickering Holt & Co. in Houston and held finance and strategic roles with Transocean Ltd. and Tyco International plc.

 

J. Kyle Derham — Chief Financial Officer and director. Mr. Derham is a Partner of Rice Investment Group. Mr. Derham is also the President, Chief Financial Officer and a director nominee of Rice II. Mr. Derham, as part of the Rice Team, led the shareholder campaign in 2019 to revamp the strategic direction of EQT and elect a majority slate of director candidates to the board of EQT, the largest operator of natural gas production in the United States. Following the campaign, Mr. Derham served as interim Chief Financial Officer of EQT and currently serves as a strategic advisor to the company. Mr. Derham previously served as Vice President, Corporate Development and Finance of Rice Energy and Rice Midstream from January 2014 through November 2017. Through his various roles working alongside the Rice family, Mr. Derham has focused on evaluating, structuring and negotiating key acquisitions and execution of critical strategic initiatives to generate attractive risk adjusted returns for investors. Mr. Derham also has experience as a private equity investor, working as an associate at First Reserve and as an investment banker at Barclays Investment Bank.

 

James Wilmot Rogers — Chief Accounting Officer. Mr. Rogers is also the Chief Accounting Officer of Rice II. Mr. Rogers served as Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer & Administrative Officer, Treasurer of Rice Energy from April 2011 through November 2017. Mr. Rogers led accounting, tax and human resources functions for Rice Energy, Rice Midstream and its numerous joint ventures and joint venture companies. Mr. Rogers oversaw such functions through two initial public offerings in a single calendar year (Rice Energy in January 2014 and Rice Midstream in December 2014) and through numerous asset and corporate level acquisitions totaling more than $10 billion in asset value. He also has numerous years in public accounting experience, having worked at both Ernst & Young and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

 

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Dr. Kathryn Jackson — Independent director. Dr. Kathryn Jackson, one of our independent directors, is an accomplished executive leader with a highly successful career in electricity generation, energy system operations and technology management. Dr. Jackson serves as Director of Energy and Technology Consulting for KeySource, Inc. Prior to this role, Dr. Jackson has served as President and Chief Technology Officer for RTI International Metals, Chief Technology Officer and Senior Vice President for Research and Technology for Westinghouse Electric Company, LLC, and Executive Vice President of River System Operations and Environment for the Tennessee Valley Authority. Dr. Jackson serves on the board of directors of Portland General Electric, Cameco Corporation, Duquesne Light Holdings and EQT. Dr. Jackson previously served on the board of directors of Rice Energy from April 2017 until its acquisition by EQT. Dr. Jackson holds advanced degrees in engineering, industrial engineering, and public policy from Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh.

 

Joseph Malchow — Independent director. Mr. Malchow, one of our independent directors, is the Founding General Partner at HNVR Technology Investment Management in Menlo Park, California, a Seed and Series A venture capital firm. The firm supports software entrepreneurs in fields including artificial intelligence, developer tooling, low code business logic, data and computing infrastructure, cybersecurity for enterprise, government, and people, and SaaS in a number of specific verticals including finance and credit, freight and logistics, national security and defense technology, and construction. Mr. Malchow also sits on the Board of Enphase Energy, Inc. (Nasdaq: ENPH), a global energy technology company. Mr. Malchow earned an A.B. from Dartmouth College in 2008. He later studied at the law and business schools of Stanford University, receiving a J.D. in 2013.

 

James Torgerson — Independent director Mr. Torgerson, one of our independent directors, was the Chief Executive Officer of Avangrid, Inc., a public utility company with $35 billion of assets, from December 2015 until June 2020. Prior to that role, Mr. Torgerson served as President and Chief Executive Officer of UIL Holdings Corporation beginning in 2006. Prior to 2006, Mr. Torgerson was President and Chief Executive Officer of Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. Mr. Torgerson served as the chair of the board of directors of the American Gas Association and serves as a trustee of the Yale-New Haven Hospital and as a trustee of Yale New Haven Health System. Until his retirement in June 2020, he served on the board and as an executive committee member of the Edison Electric Institute (“EEI”). Mr. Torgerson also co-chaired EEI’s Board Committee for Reliability, Security and Business Continuity, which included responsibility related to cyber security for the EEI member utilities. Mr. Torgerson, prior to his retirement, was also a member of the Electricity Sub-sector Coordinating Council (“ESCC”), that coordinates with the federal government on physical and cyber security and natural disasters impacting the electric grid.

 

Our board of directors is divided into three classes with only one class of directors being elected in each year and each class (except for those directors elected prior to our first annual meeting of stockholders) serving a three-year term. The term of office of the first class of directors, consisting of Kathryn Jackson and J. Kyle Derham, will expire at our first annual meeting of stockholders. The term of office of the second class of directors, consisting of Joseph Malchow and Daniel Joseph Rice, IV, will expire at the second annual meeting of stockholders. The term of office of the third class of directors, consisting of James Torgerson, will expire at the third annual meeting of stockholders. We may not hold an annual meeting of stockholders until after we consummate our initial business combination.

 

Holders of our founder shares have the right to elect all of our directors prior to consummation of our initial business combination and holders of our public shares do not have the right to vote on the election of directors during such time. These provisions of our amended and restated certificate of incorporation may only be amended if approved by a majority of at least 90% of our common stock voting at a stockholder meeting.

 

Our officers are appointed by the board of directors and serve at the discretion of the board of directors, rather than for specific terms of office. Our board of directors is authorized to appoint persons to the offices set forth in our bylaws as it deems appropriate. Our bylaws provide that our officers may consist of a Chairman of the Board, Chief Executive Officer, President, Chief Financial Officer, Vice Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer and such other offices as may be determined by the board of directors.

 

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Director Independence

 

The NYSE listing standards require that a majority of our board of directors be independent. An “independent director” is defined generally as a person who has no material relationship with the listed company (either directly or as a partner, stockholder or officer of an organization that has a relationship with the company). Our board of directors has determined that Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, and James Torgerson are “independent directors” as defined in the NYSE listing standards and applicable SEC rules. Our independent directors will have regularly scheduled meetings at which only independent directors are present.

 

Officer and Director Compensation

 

None of our officers or directors have received any cash compensation for services rendered to us. Commencing on the date that of our initial public offering through the earlier of consummation of our initial business combination and our liquidation, we have pay our sponsor a total of $10,000 per month for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services. In addition, our sponsor, executive officers and directors, or any of their respective affiliates, are reimbursed for any out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with activities on our behalf such as identifying potential target businesses and performing due diligence on suitable business combinations. Our audit committee reviews on a quarterly basis all payments that were made to our sponsor, officers or directors, or our or their affiliates. Any such payments prior to an initial business combination will be made using funds held outside the trust account. Other than quarterly audit committee review of such reimbursements, we do not expect to have any additional controls in place governing our reimbursement payments to our directors and officers for their out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with our activities on our behalf in connection with identifying and consummating an initial business combination. Other than these payments and reimbursements, no compensation of any kind, including finder’s and consulting fees, will be paid by the company to our sponsor, officers and directors, or any of their respective affiliates, prior to completion of our initial business combination.

 

After the completion of our initial business combination, directors or members of our management team who remain with us may be paid consulting or management fees from the combined company. All of these fees will be fully disclosed to stockholders, to the extent then known, in the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) furnished to our stockholders in connection with a proposed business combination. We have not established any limit on the amount of such fees that may be paid by the combined company to our directors or members of our management. It is unlikely the amount of such compensation will be known at the time of the proposed business combination, because the directors of the post-combination business will be responsible for determining officer and director compensation. Any compensation to be paid to our officers will be determined, or recommended to the board of directors for determination, either by a compensation committee constituted solely by independent directors or by a majority of the independent directors on our board of directors.

 

We do not intend to take any action to ensure that members of our management team maintain their positions with us after the consummation of our initial business combination, although it is possible that some or all of our officers and directors may negotiate employment or consulting arrangements to remain with us after our initial business combination. The existence or terms of any such employment or consulting arrangements to retain their positions with us may influence our management’s motivation in identifying or selecting a target business but we do not believe that the ability of our management to remain with us after the consummation of our initial business combination will be a determining factor in our decision to proceed with any potential business combination. We are not party to any agreements with our officers and directors that provide for benefits upon termination of employment.

 

Committees of the Board of Directors

 

Our board of directors has three standing committees: an audit committee, a compensation committee and a nominating and corporate governance committee. Subject to phase-in rules and a limited exception, the rules of the NYSE and Rule 10A of the Exchange Act require that the audit committee of a listed company be comprised solely of independent directors. Subject to phase-in rules and a limited exception, the rules of the NYSE require that the compensation and nominating and corporate governance committees of a listed company be comprised solely of independent directors. The charter of each committee is available on our website.

 

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Audit Committee

 

We have established an audit committee of the board of directors. Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow and James Torgerson serve as members of our audit committee. Under the NYSE listing standards and applicable SEC rules, we are required to have at least three members of the audit committee, all of whom must be independent, subject to the exception described below. Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, and James Torgerson are independent.

 

James Torgerson serves as chair of the audit committee. Each member of the audit committee is financially literate and our board of directors has determined that James Torgerson qualifies as an “audit committee financial expert” as defined in applicable SEC rules.

 

We have adopted an audit committee charter, which details the principal functions of the audit committee, including:

 

the appointment, compensation, retention, replacement, and oversight of the work of the independent registered public accounting firm and any other independent registered public accounting firm engaged by us;

 

pre-approving all audit and permitted non-audit services to be provided by the independent registered public accounting firm or any other registered public accounting firm engaged by us, and establishing pre-approval policies and procedures;

 

reviewing and discussing with the independent registered public accounting firm all relationships the auditors have with us in order to evaluate their continued independence;

 

setting clear hiring policies for employees or former employees of the independent registered public accounting firm;

 

setting clear policies for audit partner rotation in compliance with applicable laws and regulations;

 

obtaining and reviewing a report, at least annually, from the independent registered public accounting firm describing (i) the independent registered public accounting firm’s internal quality-control procedures and (ii) any material issues raised by the most recent internal quality-control review, or peer review, of the audit firm, or by any inquiry or investigation by governmental or professional authorities within the preceding five years respecting one or more independent audits carried out by the firm and any steps taken to deal with such issues;

 

reviewing and approving any related party transaction required to be disclosed pursuant to Item 404 of Regulation S-K promulgated by the SEC prior to us entering into such transaction; and

 

reviewing with management, the independent registered public accounting firm, and our legal advisors, as appropriate, any legal, regulatory or compliance matters, including any correspondence with regulators or government agencies and any employee complaints or published reports that raise material issues regarding our financial statements or accounting policies and any significant changes in accounting standards or rules promulgated by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, the SEC or other regulatory authorities.

 

Compensation Committee

 

Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, and James Torgerson serve as members of our compensation committee. Under the NYSE listing standards and applicable SEC rules, we are required to have at least two members of the compensation committee, all of whom must be independent. Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, and James Torgerson are independent. Joseph Malchow serves as chair of the compensation committee.

 

We have adopted a compensation committee charter, which details the principal functions of the compensation committee, including:

 

reviewing and approving on an annual basis the corporate goals and objectives relevant to our chief executive officer’s compensation, evaluating our chief executive officer’s performance in light of such goals and objectives and determining and approving the remuneration (if any) of our chief executive officer based on such evaluation;

 

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reviewing and approving on an annual basis the compensation of all of our other officers;

 

reviewing on an annual basis our executive compensation policies and plans;

 

implementing and administering our incentive compensation equity-based remuneration plans;

 

assisting management in complying with our proxy statement and annual report disclosure requirements;

 

approving all special perquisites, special cash payments and other special compensation and benefit arrangements for our officers and employees;

 

if required, producing a report on executive compensation to be included in our annual proxy statement; and

 

reviewing, evaluating and recommending changes, if appropriate, to the remuneration for directors.

 

The charter also provides that the compensation committee may, in its sole discretion, retain or obtain the advice of a compensation consultant, legal counsel or other adviser and will be directly responsible for the appointment, compensation and oversight of the work of any such adviser. However, before engaging or receiving advice from a compensation consultant, external legal counsel or any other adviser, the compensation committee will consider the independence of each such adviser, including the factors required by the NYSE and the SEC.

 

Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

 

The members of our nominating and corporate governance are Kathryn Jackson, Joseph Malchow, and James Torgerson. Kathryn Jackson serves as chair of the nominating and corporate governance committee.

 

The primary purposes of our nominating and corporate governance committee is to assist the board in:

 

identifying, screening and reviewing individuals qualified to serve as directors and recommending to the board of directors candidates for nomination for election at the annual meeting of stockholders or to fill vacancies on the board of directors;

 

developing, recommending to the board of directors and overseeing implementation of our corporate governance guidelines;

 

coordinating and overseeing the annual self-evaluation of the board of directors, its committees, individual directors and management in the governance of the company; and

 

reviewing on a regular basis our overall corporate governance and recommending improvements as and when necessary.

 

The nominating and corporate governance committee is governed by a charter that complies with the rules of the NYSE.

 

Director Nominations

 

Our nominating and corporate governance committee recommend to the board of directors candidates for nomination for election at the annual meeting of the stockholders. The board of directors also consider director candidates recommended for nomination by our stockholders during such times as they are seeking proposed nominees to stand for election at the next annual meeting of stockholders (or, if applicable, a special meeting of stockholders). Our stockholders that wish to nominate a director for election to our board of directors should follow the procedures set forth in our bylaws.

 

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We have not formally established any specific, minimum qualifications that must be met or skills that are necessary for directors to possess. In general, in identifying and evaluating nominees for director, our board of directors considers educational background, diversity of professional experience, knowledge of our business, integrity, professional reputation, independence, wisdom, and the ability to represent the best interests of our stockholders. Prior to our initial business combination, holders of our public shares do not have the right to recommend director candidates for nomination to our board of directors.

 

Compensation Committee Interlocks and Insider Participation

 

None of our officers currently serves, or in the past year has served, as a member of the board of directors or compensation committee of any entity that has one or more officers serving on our board of directors.

 

Code of Ethics

 

We have adopted a Code of Ethics applicable to our directors, officers and employees. A copy of the Code of Ethics will be provided without charge upon written request to our principal executive offices. We intend to disclose any amendments to or waivers of certain provisions of our Code of Ethics in a Current Report on Form 8-K.

 

Corporate Governance Guidelines

 

Our board of directors has adopted corporate governance guidelines in accordance with the corporate governance rules of the NYSE that serve as a flexible framework within which our board of directors and its committees operate. These guidelines cover a number of areas including board membership criteria and director qualifications, director responsibilities, board agenda, roles of the chairman of the board, chief executive officer and presiding director, meetings of independent directors, committee responsibilities and assignments, board member access to management and independent advisors, director communications with third parties, director compensation, director orientation and continuing education, evaluation of senior management and management succession planning. A copy of our corporate governance guidelines is posted on our website.

 

Conflicts of Interest

 

Members of our sponsor, as well as Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies may compete with us for acquisition opportunities. If they decide to pursue any such opportunity, we may be precluded from procuring such opportunities. Neither members of our sponsor nor members of our management team who are members of our sponsor have any obligation to present us with any opportunity for a potential business combination of which they become aware, unless presented to such member solely in his or her capacity as an officer of the company. Members of our sponsor and our management, in their other endeavors, may be required to present potential business combinations to other entities, before they present such opportunities to us.

 

In addition, members of our sponsor, as well as Rice Investment Group and its portfolio companies, may sponsor other blank check companies similar to ours during the period in which we are seeking an initial business combination, and members of our management team may participate in such blank check companies. In particular, an affiliate of Rice Investment Group has formed Rice II, a blank check company like our company that was formed to consummate an initial business combination. Like us, Rice II intends to focus its search for a target business in the energy transition or sustainability arena. As of the date of this filing, Rice II has not completed its initial public offering and does not have a class of securities registered under the Exchange Act. Any such companies, including Rice II, may present additional conflicts of interest in pursuing an acquisition target, particularly in the event there is overlap among the management teams. Mr. Rice also serves as a director and officer of Rice II, and Mr. Derham also serves as an officer and is a director nominee of Rice II. However, we do not believe that any such potential conflicts would materially affect our ability to complete our initial business combination. Each of Mr. Rice and Mr. Derham has agreed not to become an officer or director of any other special purpose acquisition company with a class of securities registered under the Exchange Act, until we have entered into a definitive agreement regarding our initial business combination or we have failed to complete our initial business combination within 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering. Neither Mr. Rice nor Mr. Derham has been involved with any blank check companies prior to our company.

 

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Each of our officers and directors presently has, and any of them in the future may have additional, fiduciary or contractual obligations to other entities, including Rice II, pursuant to which such officer or director is or will be required to present a business combination opportunity. Accordingly, if any of our officers or directors becomes aware of a business combination opportunity which is suitable for an entity to which he or she has then-current fiduciary or contractual obligations, he or she will honor his or her fiduciary or contractual obligations to present such opportunity to such other entity. We do not believe, however, that the fiduciary duties or contractual obligations of our officers or directors will materially affect our ability to complete our business combination. In addition, we may pursue an Affiliated Joint Acquisition opportunity with an entity to which an officer or director has a fiduciary or contractual obligation. Any such entity may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the acquisition by issuing to such entity a class of equity or equity-linked securities. Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that we renounce our interest in any corporate opportunity offered to any director or officer unless such opportunity is expressly offered to such person solely in his or her capacity as a director or officer of our company and such opportunity is one we are legally and contractually permitted to undertake and would otherwise be reasonable for us to pursue.

 

Potential investors should also be aware of the following other potential conflicts of interest:

 

None of our officers or directors is required to commit his or her full time to our affairs and, accordingly, may have conflicts of interest in allocating his or her time among various business activities.

 

In the course of their other business activities, our officers and directors may become aware of investment and business opportunities which may be appropriate for presentation to us as well as the other entities with which they are affiliated. Our management may have conflicts of interest in determining to which entity a particular business opportunity should be presented.

 

Our initial stockholders have agreed that any founder shares and sponsor shares will not be entitled to redemption rights, and they will waive any such redemption rights for any public shares held by them, in connection with the consummation of our initial business combination. Additionally, our initial stockholders have agreed that any founder shares held by them will not be entitled to redemption rights, and they will waive any such redemption rights for any public shares held by them, if we fail to consummate our initial business combination within 24 months after the closing of our initial public offering. If we do not complete our initial business combination within such applicable time period, the portion of the proceeds of the sale of the private placement warrants held in the trust account will be used to fund the redemption of our public shares and any Class A Units of Opco (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.), and the private placement warrants will expire worthless. Furthermore, our initial stockholders have agreed not to transfer, assign or sell any founder shares held by them, and any shares of our Class A common stock acquired upon exchange of founder shares, until one year after the date of the consummation of our initial business combination or earlier if, subsequent to our initial business combination, (i) the last sale price of our Class A common stock equals or exceeds $12.00 per share (as adjusted for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like) for any 20 trading days within any 30-trading day period commencing at least 150 days after our initial business combination or (ii) we consummate a subsequent liquidation, merger, stock exchange or other similar transaction which results in all of our stockholders having the right to exchange their shares of common stock for cash, securities or other property. With certain limited exceptions, the private placement warrants and the Class A common stock underlying such warrants will not be transferable, assignable or saleable until 30 days after the completion of our initial business combination. Since our sponsor and officers and directors may directly or indirectly own common stock and warrants following our initial public offering, our officers and directors may have a conflict of interest in determining whether a particular target business is an appropriate business with which to effectuate our initial business combination.

 

Our officers and directors may have a conflict of interest with respect to evaluating a particular business combination if the retention or resignation of any such officers and directors was included by a target business as a condition to any agreement with respect to our initial business combination.

 

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Our sponsor, officers or directors may have a conflict of interest with respect to evaluating a business combination and financing arrangements as we may obtain loans from our sponsor or an affiliate of our sponsor or any of our officers or directors to finance transaction costs in connection with an intended initial business combination. Up to $1,500,000 of such loans may be convertible into warrants at a price of $1.00 per warrant at the option of the lender. Such warrants would be identical to the private placement warrants, including as to exercise price, exercisability and exercise period.

 

The conflicts described above may not be resolved in our favor.

 

In general, officers and directors of a corporation incorporated under the laws of the State of Delaware are required to present business opportunities to a corporation if:

 

the corporation could financially undertake the opportunity;

 

the opportunity is within the corporation’s line of business; and

 

it would not be fair to our company and its stockholders for the opportunity not to be brought to the attention of the corporation.

 

Accordingly, as a result of multiple business affiliations, our officers and directors may have similar legal obligations relating to presenting business opportunities meeting the above-listed criteria to multiple entities. Furthermore, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that the doctrine of corporate opportunity will not apply with respect to any of our officers or directors in circumstances where the application of the doctrine would conflict with any fiduciary duties or contractual obligations they may have.

 

We are not prohibited from pursuing an initial business combination with or from a company that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, including a portfolio company of Rice Investment Group, or making the acquisition through a joint venture or other form of shared ownership with our sponsor, officers or directors or their affiliates, including Rice Investment Group and/or one or more of its portfolio companies and Rice II. We are also not prohibited from entering into an agreement with our sponsor, officers or directors or their affiliates with respect to the operation of any business we acquire in connection with the initial business combination. In the event we seek to complete our initial business combination with a business combination target that is affiliated with our sponsor, officers or directors, we, or a committee of independent directors, would obtain an opinion from an independent investment banking firm which is a member of FINRA or from an independent accounting firm that such initial business combination is fair to our company from a financial point of view. We are not required to obtain such an opinion in any other context. Further, commencing on the date our securities are first listed on the NYSE, we began paying an amount equal to $10,000 per month to our sponsor for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services provided to us.

 

We cannot assure you that any of the above mentioned conflicts will be resolved in our favor.

 

In the event that we submit our initial business combination to our public stockholders for a vote, we will complete our initial business combination only if a majority of the outstanding shares of common stock voted are voted in favor of the initial business combination. Our initial stockholders have agreed to vote any founder shares held by them and any public shares purchased during or after the offering in favor of our initial business combination and our officers and directors have also agreed to vote any public shares purchased during or after the offering in favor of our initial business combination.

 

Limitation on Liability and Indemnification of Officers and Directors

 

Our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provides that our officers and directors will be indemnified by us to the fullest extent authorized by Delaware law, as it now exists or may in the future be amended. In addition, our amended and restated certificate of incorporation provide that our directors will not be personally liable for monetary damages to us or our stockholders for breaches of their fiduciary duty as directors, unless they violated their duty of loyalty to us or our stockholders, acted in bad faith, knowingly or intentionally violated the law, authorized unlawful payments of dividends, unlawful stock purchases or unlawful redemptions, or derived an improper personal benefit from their actions as directors.

 

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We have entered into agreements with our officers and directors to provide contractual indemnification in addition to the indemnification provided for in our amended and restated certificate of incorporation. Our bylaws also permit us to secure insurance on behalf of any officer, director or employee for any liability arising out of his or her actions, regardless of whether Delaware law would permit such indemnification. We have purchased a policy of directors’ and officers’ liability insurance that insures our officers and directors against the cost of defense, settlement or payment of a judgment in some circumstances and insures us against our obligations to indemnify our officers and directors.

 

Our officers and directors have agreed, and any persons who may become officers or directors prior to the initial business combination will agree, to waive any right, title, interest or claim of any kind in or to any monies in the trust account, and to waive any right, title, interest or claim of any kind they may have in the future as a result of, or arising out of, any services provided to us and will not seek recourse against the trust account for any reason whatsoever. Accordingly, any indemnification provided will only be able to be satisfied by us if (i) we have sufficient funds outside of the trust account or (ii) we consummate an initial business combination.

 

Our indemnification obligations may discourage stockholders from bringing a lawsuit against our officers or directors for breach of their fiduciary duty. These provisions also may have the effect of reducing the likelihood of derivative litigation against our officers and directors, even though such an action, if successful, might otherwise benefit us and our stockholders. Furthermore, a stockholder’s investment may be adversely affected to the extent we pay the costs of settlement and damage awards against our officers and directors pursuant to these indemnification provisions.

 

We believe that these provisions, the insurance and the indemnity agreements are necessary to attract and retain talented and experienced officers and directors.

 

Insofar as indemnification for liabilities arising under the Securities Act may be permitted to directors, officers or persons controlling us pursuant to the foregoing provisions, we have been informed that in the opinion of the SEC such indemnification is against public policy as expressed in the Securities Act and is therefore unenforceable.

 

Item 11.Executive Compensation

 

Officer and Director Compensation

 

None of our officers or directors have received any cash compensation for services rendered to us. Commencing on the date that our securities were first listed on the NYSE through the earlier of consummation of our initial business combination and our liquidation, we have agreed to pay our sponsor a total of $10,000 per month for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services. In addition, our sponsor, executive officers and directors, or any of their respective affiliates, will be reimbursed for any out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with activities on our behalf such as identifying potential target businesses and performing due diligence on suitable business combinations. Our audit committee will review on a quarterly basis all payments that were made to our sponsor, officers or directors, or our or their affiliates. Any such payments prior to an initial business combination will be made using funds held outside the trust account. Other than quarterly audit committee review of such reimbursements, we do not expect to have any additional controls in place governing our reimbursement payments to our directors and officers for their out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with our activities on our behalf in connection with identifying and consummating an initial business combination. Other than these payments and reimbursements, no compensation of any kind, including finder’s and consulting fees, will be paid by the company to our sponsor, officers and directors, or any of their respective affiliates, prior to completion of our initial business combination.

 

After the completion of our initial business combination, directors or members of our management team who remain with us may be paid consulting or management fees from the combined company. All of these fees will be fully disclosed to stockholders, to the extent then known, in the proxy solicitation or tender offer materials (as applicable) furnished to our stockholders in connection with a proposed business combination. We have not established any limit on the amount of such fees that may be paid by the combined company to our directors or members of our management. It is unlikely the amount of such compensation will be known at the time of the proposed business combination, because the directors of the post-combination business will be responsible for determining officer and director compensation. Any compensation to be paid to our officers will be determined, or recommended to the board of directors for determination, either by a compensation committee constituted solely by independent directors or by a majority of the independent directors on our board of directors.

 

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We do not intend to take any action to ensure that members of our management team maintain their positions with us after the consummation of our initial business combination, although it is possible that some or all of our officers and directors may negotiate employment or consulting arrangements to remain with us after our initial business combination. The existence or terms of any such employment or consulting arrangements to retain their positions with us may influence our management’s motivation in identifying or selecting a target business but we do not believe that the ability of our management to remain with us after the consummation of our initial business combination will be a determining factor in our decision to proceed with any potential business combination. We are not party to any agreements with our officers and directors that provide for benefits upon termination of employment.

 

Item 12.Security Ownership of Certain Beneficial Owners and Management and Related Stockholder Matters

 

The following table sets forth information regarding the beneficial ownership of our shares of common stock as of March 19, 2021 based on information obtained from the persons named below, with respect to the beneficial ownership of our shares of common stock, by:

 

each person known by us to be the beneficial owner of more than 5% of our outstanding shares of common stock;

 

each of our executive officers and directors that beneficially owns our shares of common stock; and

 

all our executive officers and directors as a group.

 

In the table below, percentage ownership is based on 23,727,500 shares of Class A common stock (which includes shares of Class A common stock that are underlying the units) and 5,931,350 shares of Class B common stock outstanding as of March 19, 2021. The table below does not include the shares of Class A common stock underlying the private placement warrants held by our sponsor because these securities are not exercisable within 60 days of this Report.

 

Name of Beneficial Owners(1)

  Class B
common stock
    Class A
common stock
 
  Number of Shares Beneficially Owned(2)     Approximate
Percentage of Class
    Number of Shares Beneficially Owned     Approximate
Percentage of Class
 
Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC (our sponsor)(3)     5,532,287       93.3 %     2,500       *  
Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure, LLC(4)     309,063       5.2 %            
Daniel Joseph Rice, IV(3)     5,532,287       93.3 %            
J. Kyle Derham(3)     5,532,287       93.3 %            
James Wilmot Rogers                        
Kathryn Jackson     30,000       *              
Joseph Malchow     30,000       *              
James Torgerson     30,000       *              
All officers and directors as a group (six individuals)     5,622,287       94.8 %            
Adage Capital Partners, LP(5)                 1,935,000       8.16 %
CIBC Private Wealth Group, LLC(6)                 2,128,500       8.97 %
Goldman Sachs Asset Management(7)                 2,550,000       10.4 %
Hartree Partners, LP(8)                     1,359,341       5.7 %
HITE Hedge Asset Management LLC(9)                 1,300,000       5.5 %
Kensico Capital Management Corp(10)                 2,000,000       8.4 %

 

 

*Less than one percent.

 

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(1)Unless otherwise noted, the business address of each of the following entities or individuals is 102 East Main Street, Second Story, Carnegie, Pennsylvania 15106.

 

(2)The interests shown consist of founder shares and sponsor shares. The Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) comprising such shares will be exchangeable for shares of our Class A common stock after the time of our initial business combination on a one-for-one basis, subject to adjustment, as described in the section entitled “Description of Securities.” Excludes forward purchase securities that will only be issued, if at all, at the time of our initial business combination.

 

(3)Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC is the record holder of the shares reported herein. Daniel Joseph Rice, IV and J. Kyle Derham are the managing members of Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC.

 

(4)Upon the closing of our initial public offering, our sponsor transferred 309,063 founder shares to Atlas Point Fund pursuant to the forward purchase agreement. Atlas Point Fund is the record holder of the shares reported herein. CIBC National Trust Company, a limited-purpose national trust bank, is the manager of Atlas Point Fund. The parent company of CIBC National Trust is CIBC Private Wealth Group, LLC, which in turn is an indirect, wholly owned subsidiary of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (“CIBC”). Accordingly, CIBC may be deemed to have or share beneficial ownership of the common stock held directly by Atlas Point Fund. The business address for Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC is: 3920 Northside Parkway, 7th Floor, Atlanta, Georgia 30327.

 

(5)The address of Adage Capital Partners, L.P. is 200 Clarendon Street, 52nd Floor, Boston, Massachusetts 02116. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on November 5, 2020 (the “Adage 13G”). According to the Adage 13G, Adage Capital Partners, L.P., a Delaware limited partnership (“ACP” is the direct owner of such Class A Common Stock. Adage Capital Partners GP, L.L.C., a limited liability company organized under the laws of the State of Delaware (“ACPGP”), is the general partner of ACP and therefore has beneficial ownership of the shares of Class A Common Stock directly owned by ACP. Adage Capital Advisors, L.L.C., a limited liability company organized under the laws of the State of Delaware (“ACA”), is the managing member of ACPGP, the general partner of ACP, and therefore has beneficial ownership of the shares of Class A Common Stock directly owned by ACP. Robert Atchinson (“Mr. Atchinson”) is the managing member of ACA, which is the managing member of ACPGP, which is the general partner of ACP and therefore Mr. Atchinson has beneficial ownership of the shares of Class A Common Stock directly owned by ACP. Phillip Gross (“Mr. Gross”) is the managing member of ACA, which is the managing member of ACPGP, which is the general partner of ACP and therefore Mr. Gross has beneficial ownership of the shares of Class A Common Stock directly owned by ACP.

 

(6)The address of CIBC Private Wealth Group, LLC is 3290 Northside Parkway NW, 7th Flr, Atlanta, GA 30327. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on February 14, 2021.

 

(7)The address of Goldman Sachs Asset Management is 200 West Street New York, NY 10282. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on December 16, 2020.

 

(8)The address of Hartree Partners, LP is 1185 Avenue of the Americas New York, NY 10036. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on February 8, 2021.

 

(9)The address of HITE Hedge Asset Management LLC is 300 Crown Colony Drive Suite 108 Quincy, MA 02169. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on February 17, 2021.

 

(10)The address of Kensico Capital Management Corp. is 55 Railroad Avenue, 2nd Floor Greenwich, CT 06830. Based on a Schedule 13G/A filed on February 12, 2021.

 

Our sponsor, officers and directors are deemed to be our “promoter” as such term is defined under the federal securities laws.

 

Changes in Control

 

None.

 

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Item 13.Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence

 

Founder Shares

 

In September 2020, our sponsor received 5,750,000 Class B Units of Opco for no consideration and purchased 5,750,000 corresponding shares of our Class B common stock, 2,500 shares of our Class A common stock and 100 Class A Units of Opco and 100 corresponding shares of our Class B common stock for an aggregate of $26,000. The number of founder shares issued was determined based on the expectation that such founder shares would represent 20% of the total outstanding equity upon completion of our initial public offering (excluding the sponsor shares). In October, 2020 our sponsor forfeited 90,000 Class B Units of Opco, and 30,000 Class Units of Opco were issued to each of our independent directors. In October 2020, we effected a dividend, and Opco effected a distribution, resulting in our Sponsor owning 6,091,250 Class B Units and 6,091,250 shares of our Class B common stock that comprise the founder shares. Our sponsor transferred a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock to our independent directors. Following the closing of our initial public offering, our sponsor forfeited 309,063 Class B Units of Opco, and 309,063 Class B Units of Opco was issued to Atlas Point Fund. Our sponsor transferred a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock to Atlas Point Fund. Up to 806,250 founder shares were subject to forfeiture by our sponsor depending on the extent to which the underwriters’ over-allotment option was exercised. The founder shares (including the Class A common stock issuable upon exchange thereof) may not, subject to certain limited exceptions, be transferred, assigned or sold by the holder. On October 26, 2020, the underwriters partially exercised the over-allotment option to purchase an additional 2,225,000 Units; thus, only 250,000 founder shares remained subject to forfeiture to the extent the over-allotment option was exercised. On December 5, 2020, the remaining underwriters' over-allotment option expired unexercised; thus, 250,000 founder shares held by our sponsor were forfeited for no consideration. As of December 31, 2020, there were 5,931,350 shares of Class B common stock issued and outstanding. 

 

Private Placement Warrants

 

Our sponsor purchased from us an aggregate of 6,093,900 private placement warrants at a purchase price of $1.00 per warrant ($6,093,900 in the aggregate) in a private placement that occurred simultaneously with the closing of our initial public offering. Atlas Point Fund also purchased 677,100 private placement warrants at a purchase price of $1.00 per warrant ($677,100 in the aggregate). Each private placement warrant entitles the holder to purchase for $11.50 either one share of our Class A common stock or, so long as they are held by our initial stockholders or their permitted transferees, one Class A Unit of Opco (and corresponding share of our Class B common stock). The private placement warrants (including the Class A common stock or Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) issuable upon exercise thereof) may not, subject to certain limited exceptions, be transferred, assigned or sold by the holder until 30 days after the completion of our initial business combination.

 

We have entered into a forward purchase agreement pursuant to which we may elect, in our sole and absolute discretion, to offer Atlas Point Fund, which is a fund managed by CIBC National Trust Company the opportunity to purchase up to $75,000,000 of either (i) a number of forward purchase units for $10.00 per unit or (ii) a number of forward purchase shares for $9.67 per share in a private placement that will close simultaneously with the closing of our initial business combination. Whether we will issue Atlas Point Fund forward purchase units valued at $10.00 per unit or forward purchase shares valued at $9.67 per share will be determined at our election, and in our sole discretion, at least 10 business days prior to the closing of our initial business combination. Each whole forward purchase warrant is exercisable to purchase one share of our Class A common stock at $11.50 per share. The forward purchase warrants will have the same terms as the public warrants and the forward purchase shares will be identical to the shares of Class A common stock included in the units being sold in our initial public offering, except the forward purchase shares and the forward purchase warrants will be subject to transfer restrictions and certain registration rights and the forward purchase units will consist of only one-third of one forward purchase warrant. The funds from the sale of the forward purchase securities may be used as part of the consideration to the sellers in the initial business combination, and any excess funds may be used for the working capital needs of the post-transaction company. This agreement is independent of the percentage of stockholders electing to redeem their public shares and may provide us with an increased minimum funding level for the initial business combination. The forward purchase agreement is subject to conditions, including Atlas Point Fund giving us its written consent to purchase the forward purchase securities no later than five days after we notify it of our intention to meet to consider entering into a definitive agreement for a proposed business combination. Atlas Point Fund may grant or withhold its consent to the purchase entirely within its sole discretion. Accordingly, if Atlas Point Fund does not consent to the purchase, it will not be obligated to purchase the forward purchase securities. Additionally, pursuant to the terms of the forward purchase agreement, we have granted Atlas Point Fund the right to appoint a single observer to our board of directors until the consummation of our initial business combination. Such observer will not have voting rights or otherwise have any of the powers of a member of our board of directors and Atlas Point Fund will not have the right to appoint such observer at any time that Atlas Point Fund or any of Atlas Point Fund’s affiliates has the right to designate a director or observer to the board of directors of a special purchase acquisition company that is focused on an industry similar to that which we are focused.

 

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Opco LLC Agreement

 

In connection with our initial public offering, we entered into the Amended and Restated Limited Liability Company Agreement of Opco (the “Opco LLC Agreement”). A form of the Opco LLC Agreement was filed as an exhibit to our Registration Statement on Form S-1 filed in connection with our initial public offering, and the following description of the Opco LLC Agreement is qualified in its entirety by reference thereto.

 

Conversion of Class B Units of Opco and Exchange Right

 

Our initial stockholders own all of the outstanding Class B Units of Opco. The Class B Units of Opco will convert into Class A Units of Opco in connection with the initial business combination on a one-for-one basis, subject to adjustment for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like and subject to further adjustment as described below under “— Founder Shares Anti-Dilution.”

 

In addition, following our initial business combination, holders of Class A Units of Opco (other than Rice Acquisition Corp.) will have the right (an “exchange right”), subject to certain limitations, to exchange Class A Units of Opco (and a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock) for, at our option, (i) shares of our Class A common stock on a one-for-one basis, subject to adjustment for stock splits, stock dividends, reorganizations, recapitalizations and the like, or (ii) a corresponding amount of cash. Our decision to make a cash payment upon an exercise of an exchange right will be made by our independent directors. We will determine whether to issue shares of our Class A common stock or pay cash based on facts in existence at the time of the decision, which we expect would include the relative value of the Class A common stock (including trading prices for the Class A common stock at the time), the cash purchase price, the availability of other sources of liquidity (such as an issuance of preferred stock) to acquire the Class A Units of Opco and alternative uses for such cash.

 

Holders of Class A Units of Opco (other than Rice Acquisition Corp.) will generally be permitted to exercise the exchange right on a quarterly basis, subject to certain de minimis allowances. In addition, additional exchanges may occur in connection with certain specified events, and any exchanges involving 500,000 or more Class A Units of Opco (subject to our discretion to permit exchanges of a lower number of units) may occur at any time upon ten business days’ advanced notice. The exchange rights will be subject to certain limitations and restrictions intended to reduce the administrative burden of exchanges upon us and ensure that Opco will continue to be treated as a partnership for U.S. federal income tax purposes.

 

Following any exchange of Class A Units of Opco (and a corresponding number of shares of our Class B common stock), Rice Acquisition Corp. will retain the Class A Units of Opco and cancel the shares of our Class B common stock. As the holders of Class A Units of Opco (other than Rice Acquisition Corp.) exchange their Class A Units of Opco, our membership interest in Opco will be correspondingly increased, the number of shares of our Class A common stock outstanding will be increased, and the number of shares of our Class B common stock outstanding will be reduced.

 

In connection with our initial business combination, we might choose to issue additional Class A Units of Opco (and corresponding shares of our Class B common stock) to participants in the business combination, such as sellers of assets or entities or financing sources. We expect that any participants receiving Class A Units of Opco in the business combination will have an exchange right on substantially the same terms as described above.

 

Founder Shares Anti-Dilution

 

In the case that additional shares of our Class A common stock, or equity-linked securities, are issued or deemed issued in excess of the amounts sold in the offering in connection with the initial business combination (other than the forward purchase securities), the number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco will convert may be adjusted (unless the holders of a majority of the outstanding founder shares agree to waive such adjustment with respect to any such issuance or deemed issuance) so that, after all founders shares have been exchanged for shares of our Class A common stock, the aggregate number of shares of our Class A common stock received by holders in exchange for founders shares would equal 20% of the sum of the total outstanding shares of common stock upon the completion of our initial public offering plus all shares of our Class A common stock and equity-linked securities issued or deemed issued in connection with the business combination (excluding the forward purchase securities and any shares or equity-linked securities issued, or to be issued, to any seller in the business combination and excluding the sponsor shares). In addition, the number of outstanding shares of our Class B common stock will be adjusted through a stock split or stock dividend so that the total number of outstanding shares of our Class B common stock corresponds to the total number of Class A Units of Opco outstanding (other than those held by Rice Acquisition Corp.) plus the total number of Class A Units of Opco into which the Class B Units of Opco are entitled to convert.

 

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Non-Liquidating Distributions and Allocations of Income and Loss

 

Subject to the obligation of Opco to make tax distributions and to reimburse Rice Acquisition Corp. for its corporate and other overhead expenses, Rice Acquisition Corp. will have the right to determine when non-liquidating distributions will be made to the holders of Opco Units and the amount of any such distributions. We do not anticipate making any such distributions (other than tax distributions and reimbursements of expenses) to holders of Opco Units (including Rice Acquisition Corp.) prior to our initial business combination, other than redemptions of Class A Units of Opco held by Rice Acquisition Corp. in connection with a redemption of public shares. If we authorize a non-liquidating distribution, whether before or following our initial business combination, the distribution will be made to holders of Opco Units on a pro rata basis in accordance with their respective percentage ownership of Opco Units.

 

Opco will allocate its net income or net loss for each year to the holders of its Class A and Class B Units pursuant to the terms of the Opco LLC Agreement, and holders of its Class A and Class B Units, including Rice Acquisition Corp., will generally incur U.S. federal, state and local income taxes on their share of any taxable income of Opco. Prior to the initial business combination, net profits and net losses of Opco generally will be allocated to holders of Class A Units of Opco on a pro rata basis in accordance with their respective percentage ownership of Class A Units (except for certain allocations of items of book income and loss and book-tax differences that may be specially allocated). Prior to our initial business combination, to the extent cash is available, pro rata tax distributions will be made to the holders of Class A Units of Opco in an amount sufficient to allow Rice Acquisition Corp. to satisfy its actual income tax liabilities. We will own substantially all of the Class A Units of Opco prior to our initial business combination, and accordingly, we will be allocated substantially all of the taxable income of Opco and will receive substantially all of the tax distributions made by Opco.

 

After our initial business combination, net profits and net losses of Opco generally will be allocated to holders of Opco Units on a pro rata basis in accordance with their respective percentage ownership of Opco Units (except for certain allocations of book income and loss items and book-tax differences that may be specially allocated). After our initial business combination, to the extent cash is available, tax distributions will be made to the holders of Opco Units, on a pro rata basis in accordance with their respective percentage ownership of Opco Units, in an amount sufficient to allow Rice Acquisition Corp. to satisfy its actual tax liabilities.

 

Issuance of Equity

 

Except as otherwise determined by us, at any time Rice Acquisition Corp. issues a share of its Class A common stock or any other equity security, the net proceeds received by Rice Acquisition Corp. with respect to such issuance, if any, shall be concurrently invested in Opco, and Opco shall issue to Rice Acquisition Corp. one Class A Unit or other economically equivalent equity interest. Conversely, if at any time any shares of Rice Acquisition Corp.’s Class A common stock are redeemed, repurchased, or otherwise acquired by Rice Acquisition Corp., including in connection with the exercise of redemption rights by holders of our public shares, Opco shall redeem, repurchase or otherwise acquire an equal number of Opco Units held by Rice Acquisition Corp., upon the same terms and for the same price, as the shares of our Class A common stock are redeemed, repurchased or otherwise acquired.

 

Other Transactions With Our Sponsor and Atlas Point Fund

 

As more fully discussed in the section of this Report titled “Certain Relationships and Related Transactions, and Director Independence” if any of our officers or directors becomes aware of a business combination opportunity that falls within the line of business of any entity to which he or she has then-current fiduciary or contractual obligations, he or she will honor his or her fiduciary or contractual obligations to present such business combination opportunity to such entity. Our officers and directors currently have certain relevant fiduciary duties or contractual obligations that may take priority over their duties to us. We may pursue an Affiliated Joint Acquisition opportunity with an entity to which an officer or director has a fiduciary or contractual obligation. Any such entity may co-invest with us in the target business at the time of our initial business combination, or we could raise additional proceeds to complete the acquisition by issuing to such entity a class of equity or equity-linked securities.

 

Commencing on the date that our securities were first listed on the NYSE, we began to pay our sponsor a total of $10,000 per month for office space, utilities, secretarial support and administrative services. Upon completion of our initial business combination or our liquidation, we will cease paying these monthly fees.

 

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Other than these monthly fees, no compensation of any kind, including finder’s and consulting fees, will be paid by the company to our sponsor, officers and directors, or any of their respective affiliates, for services rendered prior to or in connection with the completion of an initial business combination. However, these individuals will be reimbursed for any out-of-pocket expenses incurred in connection with activities on our behalf such as identifying potential target businesses and performing due diligence on suitable business combinations. Our audit committee will review on a quarterly basis all payments that were made to our sponsor, officers, directors or our or their affiliates and will determine which expenses and the amount of expenses that will be reimbursed. There is no cap or ceiling on the reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses incurred by such persons in connection with activities on our behalf.

 

In addition, in order to finance transaction costs in connection with an intended initial business combination, our sponsor or an affiliate of our sponsor or certain of our officers and directors may, but are not obligated to, loan us funds as may be required. If we complete an initial business combination, we would repay such loaned amounts. In the event that our initial business combination does not close, we may use a portion of the working capital held outside the trust account to repay such loaned amounts but no proceeds from our trust account would be used for such repayment. Up to $1,500,000 of such loans may be convertible into warrants at a price of $1.00 per warrant at the option of the lender. The warrants would be identical to the private placement warrants, including as to exercise price, exercisability and exercise period. Except as set forth above, the terms of such loans by our officers and directors, if any, have not been determined and no written agreements exist with respect to such loans. Prior to the completion of our initial business combination, we do not expect to seek loans from parties other than our sponsor or an affiliate of our sponsor as we do not believe third parties will be willing to loan such funds and provide a waiver against any and all rights to seek access to funds in our trust account.

 

After our initial business combination, members of our management team who remain with us may be paid consulting, management or other fees from the combined company with any and all amounts being fully disclosed to our stockholders, to the extent then known, in the tender offer or proxy solicitation materials (as applicable) furnished to our stockholders. It is unlikely the amount of such compensation will be known at the time of distribution of such tender offer materials or at the time of a stockholder meeting held to consider our initial business combination, as applicable, as it will be up to the directors of the post-combination business to determine executive and director compensation.

 

We will enter into a registration rights agreement with respect to the private placement warrants, the warrants issuable upon conversion of working capital loans (if any) and the shares of our Class A common stock issuable upon exercise of the foregoing and upon exchange of the founder shares, which is described under the heading “Description of Securities — Registration Rights.”

 

Related Party Policy

 

Following the consummation of our initial public offering, we adopted a code of ethics requiring us to avoid, wherever possible, all conflicts of interests, except under guidelines or resolutions approved by our board of directors (or the appropriate committee of our board) or as disclosed in our public filings with the SEC. Under our code of ethics, conflict of interest situations will include any financial transaction, arrangement or relationship (including any indebtedness or guarantee of indebtedness) involving the company.

 

In addition, our audit committee, pursuant to a written charter that was adopted prior to the consummation of our initial public offering, is responsible for reviewing and approving related party transactions to the extent that we enter into such transactions. An affirmative vote of a majority of the members of the audit committee present at a meeting at which a quorum is present is required in order to approve a related party transaction. A majority of the members of the entire audit committee will constitute a quorum. Without a meeting, the unanimous written consent of all of the members of the audit committee is required to approve a related party transaction. We also require each of our directors and executive officers to complete a directors’ and officers’ questionnaire that elicits information about related party transactions.

 

These procedures are intended to determine whether any such related party transaction impairs the independence of a director or presents a conflict of interest on the part of a director, employee or officer.

 

To further minimize conflicts of interest, we will not consummate an initial business combination with an entity that is affiliated with any of our sponsor, officers or directors unless we, or a committee of independent directors, have obtained an opinion from an independent investment banking firm which is a member of FINRA or an independent accounting firm that our initial business combination is fair to our company from a financial point of view. Our audit committee will review on a quarterly basis all payments that were made to our sponsor, officers or directors, or our or their affiliates.

 

72

 

 

Item 14.Principal Accountant Fees and Services

 

The following is a summary of fees paid to WithumSmith+Brown, PC (“Withum”) for services rendered.

 

Audit Fees. Audit fees consist of fees billed for professional services rendered for the audit of our year-end financial statements, reviews of our quarterly financial statements and services that are normally provided by our independent registered public accounting firm in connection with statutory and regulatory filings. The aggregate fees billed by Withum for audit fees, inclusive of required filings with the SEC for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020, and of services rendered in connection with our initial public offering, totaled $66,435.

 

Audit-Related Fees. Audit-related fees consist of fees billed for assurance and related services that are reasonably related to performance of the audit or review of our year-end financial statements and are not reported under “Audit Fees.” These services include attest services that are not required by statute or regulation and consultation concerning financial accounting and reporting standards. We did not pay Withum any audit-related fees during the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020.

 

Tax Fees. Tax fees consist of fees billed for professional services relating to tax compliance, tax planning and tax advice. We did not pay Withum any tax fees during the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020.

 

All Other Fees. All other fees consist of fees billed for all other services. We did not pay Withum any other fees during the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020.

 

Pre-Approval Policy

 

Our audit committee was formed upon the consummation of our initial public offering. As a result, the audit committee did not pre-approve all of the foregoing services, although any services rendered prior to the formation of our audit committee were approved by our board of directors. Since the formation of our audit committee, and on a going-forward basis, the audit committee has and will pre-approve all auditing services and permitted non-audit services to be performed for us by our auditors, including the fees and terms thereof (subject to the de minimis exceptions for non-audit services described in the Exchange Act which are approved by the audit committee prior to the completion of the audit).

 

73

 

 

PART IV

 

Item 15.Exhibits, Financial Statements Schedules

 

(a)The following documents are filed as part of this Form 10-K:

 

(1)Financial Statements: Our consolidated financial statements are listed in the “Index to Consolidated Financial Statements” on page F-1.

 

(2)Financial Statement Schedules: None.

 

(3)Exhibits

 

We hereby file as part of this Report the exhibits listed in the attached Exhibit Index. Copies of such material can also be obtained on the SEC website at www.sec.gov.

 

Exhibit No.

 

Description

3.1   Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation. (1)
     
3.2   Bylaws. (2)
     
4.1   Warrant Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, between the Company, Opco and Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company, as warrant agent. (1)
     
4.2   Specimen Unit Certificate. (2)
     
4.3   Specimen Class A Common Stock Certificate. (2)
     
4.4   Specimen Warrant Certificate. (2)
     
4.5   Description of Registrant’s Securities.*
     
10.1   Investment Management Trust Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, between the Company, Opco and Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company, as trustee. (1)
     
10.2   Registration Rights Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, among the Company, the Sponsor, Atlas Point and certain other security holders named therein. (1)
     
10.3   Private Placement Warrants and Warrants Rights Purchase Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, between the Company, Opco and the Sponsor. (1)
     
10.4   Private Placement Warrants and Warrants Rights Purchase Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, between the Company, Opco and Atlas Point. (1)
     
10.5   Letter Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, among the Company, its officers and directors, Atlas Point and the Sponsor. (1)
     
10.6   Administrative Services Agreement, dated October 21, 2020, between the Company, Opco and the Sponsor. (1)
     
10.7   Promissory Note, dated September 1, 2020, issued to sponsor by Opco. (2)
     
10.8   Forward Purchase Agreement, dated September 30, 2020, between the Registrant and Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC. (2)

 

74

 

 

31.1   Certification of the Chief Executive Officer required by Rule 13a-14(a) or Rule 15d-14(a).*
     
31.2   Certification of the Chief Financial Officer required by Rule 13a-14(a) or Rule 15d-14(a).*
     
32.1   Certification of the Chief Executive Officer required by Rule 13a-14(b) or Rule 15d-14(b) and 18 U.S.C. 1350.**
     
32.2   Certification of the Chief Financial Officer required by Rule 13a-14(b) or Rule 15d-14(b) and 18 U.S.C. 1350.**
     
101.INS   XBRL Instance Document.*
     
101.SCH   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Schema.*
     
101.CAL   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Calculation Linkbase.*
     
101.DEF   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Definition Linkbase.*
     
101.LAB   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Label Linkbase.*
     
101.PRE   XBRL Taxonomy Extension Presentation Linkbase.*

 

 

*Filed herewith

**Furnished herewith

(1)Incorporated by reference to the registrant’s Current Report on Form 8-K, filed with the SEC on October 21, 2020.

(2)Incorporated by reference to the registrant’s Registration Statement on Form S-1, filed with the SEC on October 15, 2020.

 

Item 16.Form 10-K Summary

 

Not applicable.

 

75

 

 

SIGNATURES

 

Pursuant to the requirements of Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Act of 1934, the registrant has duly caused this Annual Report on Form 10-K to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned, thereunto duly authorized.

 

March 30, 2021

 

  Rice Acquisition Corp.
     
  /s/ Daniel Joseph Rice, IV
  Name: Daniel Joseph Rice, IV
  Title: Chief Executive Officer

 

 

Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, this Annual Report on Form 10-K has been signed below by the following persons on behalf of the registrant and in the capacities and on the dates indicated.

 

Name

 

Position

 

Date

         

/s/ Daniel Joseph Rice, IV

  Chief Executive Officer and Director   March 30, 2021
Daniel Joseph Rice, IV   (Principal Executive Officer)    
         

/s/ J. Kyle Derham

  Chief Financial Officer and Director   March 30, 2021
J. Kyle Derham   (Principal Financial Officer)    
         

/s/ James Wilmot Rogers

  Chief Accounting Officer   March 30, 2021
James Wilmot Rogers   (Principal Accounting Officer)    
         
/s/ Dr. Kathryn Jackson   Director   March 30, 2021
Dr. Kathryn Jackson        
         
/s/ Joseph Malchow   Director   March 30, 2021
Joseph Malchow        
         
/s/ James Torgerson   Director   March 30, 2021
James Torgerson        

 

76

 

 

INDEX TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

Report of Independent Registered Public Accounting Firm   F-2
     
Consolidated Balance Sheet as of December 31, 2020   F-3
     
Consolidated Statement of Operations for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020   F-4
     
Consolidated Statement of Changes in Stockholders’ Equity for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020   F-5
     
Consolidated Statement of Cash Flows for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020   F-6
     
Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements   F-7

 

F-1

 

 

REPORT OF INDEPENDENT REGISTERED PUBLIC ACCOUNTING FIRM

 

To the Stockholders and the Board of Directors of

Rice Acquisition Corp.

 

Opinion on the Consolidated Financial Statements

 

We have audited the accompanying consolidated balance sheet of Rice Acquisition Corp. (“Company”) as of December 31, 2020, the related consolidated statements of operations, changes in stockholders’ equity and cash flows for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020, and the related notes (collectively referred to as the “Consolidated Financial Statements”). In our opinion, the Consolidated Financial Statements present fairly, in all material respects, the financial position of the Company as of December 31, 2020, and the results of its operations and its cash flows for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020, in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.

 

Basis for Opinion

 

These Consolidated Financial Statements are the responsibility of the Company’s management. Our responsibility is to express an opinion on the Company’s Consolidated Financial Statements based on our audit. We are a public accounting firm registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (United States) (the “PCAOB”) and are required to be independent with respect to the Company in accordance with the U.S. federal securities laws and the applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the PCAOB.

 

We conducted our audit in accordance with the standards of the PCAOB. Those standards require that we plan and perform the audit to obtain reasonable assurance about whether the Consolidated Financial Statements are free of material misstatement, whether due to error or fraud. The Company is not required to have, nor were we engaged to perform, an audit of its internal control over financial reporting. As part of our audit we are required to obtain an understanding of internal control over financial reporting but not for the purpose of expressing an opinion on the effectiveness of the Company’s internal control over financial reporting. Accordingly, we express no such opinion.

 

Our audit included performing procedures to assess the risks of material misstatement of the Consolidated Financial Statements, whether due to error or fraud, and performing procedures that respond to those risks. Such procedures included examining, on a test basis, evidence regarding the amounts and disclosures in the Consolidated Financial Statements. Our audit also included evaluating the accounting principles used and significant estimates made by management, as well as evaluating the overall presentation of the Consolidated Financial Statements. We believe that our audit provides a reasonable basis for our opinion.

 

/s/ WithumSmith+Brown, PC

 

We have served as the Company’s auditor since 2020.

 

New York, New York

March 30, 2021

 

F-2

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEET

DECEMBER 31, 2020

 

Assets:    
Current assets:    
Cash  $1,335,167 
Prepaid expenses   662,865 
Total current assets   1,998,032 
Investments held in Trust Account   237,308,171 
Total Assets  $239,306,203 
   
Liabilities and Stockholders’ Equity:     
Current liabilities:  
Accrued expenses  $118,446 
Accounts payable   217,918 
Franchise tax payable   65,481 
Total current liabilities   401,845 
Deferred legal fees   187,500 
Deferred underwriting commissions in connection with the initial public offering   7,610,750 
Total liabilities   8,200,095 
      
Commitments and Contingencies     
      
Class A common stock; 21,596,500 shares subject to possible redemption at $10.00 per share   215,965,000 
      
Stockholders’ Equity:     
Preferred stock, $0.0001 par value; 1,000,000 shares authorized; none issued and outstanding   - 
Class A common stock, $0.0001 par value; 250,000,000 shares authorized; 2,131,000 shares issued and outstanding (excluding 21,596,500 shares subject to possible redemption)   213 
Class B common stock, $0.0001 par value; 20,000,000 shares authorized; 5,931,350 shares issued and outstanding   593 
Additional paid-in capital   15,463,913 
Accumulated deficit   (312,126)
Total Rice Acquisition Corp equity   15,152,593 
      
Non-controlling interest in subsidiary   (11,485)
      
Total stockholders’ equity   15,141,108 
Total Liabilities and Stockholders’ Equity  $239,306,203 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these Consolidated Financial Statements.

 

F-3

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF OPERATIONS

FOR THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 (INCEPTION) THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2020

 

General and administrative expenses   $ 291,301  
Franchise tax expense     65,481  
Total operating expenses     (356,782 )
Interest Income     32,171  
Net loss     (324,611 )
Net loss attributable to non-controlling interest in subsidiary     (12,485 )
Net loss attributable to Rice Acquisition Corp.   $ (312,126 )
         
Weighted average shares outstanding of redeemable Class A common stock     23,725,000  
Basic and diluted net income per share, redeemable Class A   $ -  
Weighted average shares outstanding of nonredeemable Class A and Class B common stock (1)     5,685,606  
Basic and diluted net loss per share, nonredeemable Class A and Class B   $ (0.05 )

 

 

(1)This number excludes an aggregate of up to 250,000 shares of Class B common stock subject to forfeiture if the over-allotment option is not exercised in full or in part by the underwriters. On December 5, 2020, the remaining unexercised over-allotment expired unused and therefore the remaining 250,000 shares of Class B common stock were forfeited (see Note 4).

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these Consolidated Financial Statements.

 

F-4

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF CHANGES IN STOCKHOLDERS’ EQUITY

FOR THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 (INCEPTION) THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2020

 

   Common Stock   Additional       Non-controlling   Total 
   Class A   Class B   Paid-In   Accumulated   Interest in   Stockholders’ 
   Shares   Amount   Shares (1)   Amount   Capital   Deficit   subsidiary   Equity 
Balance - September 1, 2020 (inception)   -   $-    -   $-   $-   $-   $-   $- 
Issuance of Class A and Class B common stock to Sponsor   2,500    -    6,181,350    618    24,382    -    -    25,000 
Issuance of Units in subsidiary to Sponsor   -    -    -    -    -    -    1,000    1,000 
Sale of units in initial public offering, gross   23,725,000    2,373    -    -    237,247,627    -    -    237,250,000 
Offering costs   -    -    -    -    (12,616,281)   -    -    (12,616,281)
Sale of private placement warrants to Sponsor in private placement   -    -    -    -    6,771,000    -    -    6,771,000 
Common stock subject to possible redemption   (21,596,500)   (2,160)   -    -    (215,962,840)   -    -    (215,965,000)
Forfeited Shares   -    -    (250,000)   (25)   25    -    -    - 
Net loss   -    -    -    -    -    (312,126)   (12,485)   (324,611)
Balance - December 31, 2020   2,131,000   $213    5,931,350   $593   $15,463,913   $(312,126)  $(11,485)  $15,141,108 

 

 

(1)In October 2020, the Company effected a dividend of Class B common stock, resulting in an aggregate of 6,181,350 shares of Class B common stock outstanding. All shares and associated amounts have been retroactively restated to reflect the dividend (see Note 4).

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these Consolidated Financial Statements.

 

F-5

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

RICE ACQUISITION CORP. CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF CASH FLOWS

FOR THE PERIOD FROM SEPTEMBER 1, 2020 (INCEPTION) THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2020

 

Cash Flows from Operating Activities:     
Net loss   $(324,611)
Adjustments to reconcile net loss to net cash used in operating activities:      
General and administrative expenses paid through Note from Sponsor    130,377 
Interest earned on securities held in Trust Account    (32,171)
Changes in operating assets and liabilities:      
Prepaid expenses    (662,865)
Accounts payable    44,898 
Accrued expenses    33,446 
Franchise tax payable    65,481 
Net cash used in operating activities    (745,445)
       
Cash Flows from Investing Activities      
Cash deposited in Trust Account    (237,276,000)
Net cash used in investing activities    (237,276,000)
       
Cash Flows from Financing Activities:      
Proceeds from note payable to related party    44,500 
Repayment of note payable to related party    (289,713)
Proceeds received from initial public offering, gross    237,250,000 
Proceeds received from private placement    6,771,000 
Offering costs paid    (4,419,175)
Net cash provided by financing activities    239,356,612 
       
Net change in cash    1,335,167 
Cash - beginning of the period    - 
Cash - end of the period   $1,335,167 
       
Supplemental disclosure of noncash financing activities:      
Offering costs paid by Sponsor in exchange for issuance of Class A and Class B common stock   $25,000 
Non-controlling interest in subsidiary   $1,000 
Offering costs included in accounts payable   $173,020 
Offering costs included in accrued expenses   $85,000 
Offering costs funded with note payable - related party   $114,836 
Deferred legal fees   $187,500 
Deferred underwriting commissions   $7,610,750 
Value of Class A ordinary shares subject to possible redemption   $215,965,000 

 

The accompanying notes are an integral part of these Consolidated Financial Statements.

 

F-6

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.

NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

Note 1—Description of Organization and Business Operations

 

Rice Acquisition Corp. (the “Company”) was incorporated in Delaware on September 1, 2020. As used herein, “the Company” or “Rice” refer to Rice Acquisition Corp. and its majority-owned and controlled operating subsidiary, Rice Acquisition Holdings LLC (the “Opco”), unless the context indicates otherwise. The Company was formed for the purpose of effecting a merger, share exchange, asset acquisition, share purchase, reorganization or similar business combination with one or more businesses (the “Business Combination”). The Company is an emerging growth company and, as such, the Company is subject to all of the risks associated with emerging growth companies.

 

As of December 31, 2020, the Company had not commenced any operations. All activity for the period from September 1, 2020 (inception) through December 31, 2020 relates to the Company’s formation and the preparation of its initial public offering (the “Initial Public Offering”) and since the closing of the Initial Public Offering, the search for a prospective initial Business Combination. The Company will not generate any operating revenues until after the completion of its initial Business Combination, at the earliest. The Company will generate non-operating income in the form of interest income on cash and cash equivalents from the proceeds derived from the Initial Public Offering (as defined below). The Company has selected December 31 as its fiscal year end.

 

The Company’s sponsor is Rice Acquisition Sponsor LLC, a Delaware limited liability company (the “Sponsor”). The registration statement for the Company’s Initial Public Offering was declared effective on October 21, 2020. On October 26, 2020, the Company consummated its Initial Public Offering of 23,725,000 units (each, a “Unit” and collectively, the “Units”), including 2,225,000 additional Units that were issued pursuant to the underwriters’ partial exercise of their over-allotment option (the “Over-Allotment Units”), at $10.00 per Unit, generating gross proceeds of approximately $237.3 million, and incurring offering costs of approximately $12.5 million, inclusive of $7.6 million in deferred underwriting commissions (Note 5).

 

Simultaneously with the closing of the Initial Public Offering, the Company consummated the private placement (“Private Placement”) of 6,771,000 warrants (each, a “Private Placement Warrant” and collectively, the “Private Placement Warrants”) to the Sponsor and Atlas Point Energy Infrastructure Fund, LLC (“Atlas Point Fund”), at a price of $1.00 per Private Placement Warrant, generating gross proceeds to the Company of approximately $6.8 million (Note 4). Each Private Placement Warrant is exercisable to purchase one share of Rice’s Class A common stock or, in certain circumstances, one Class A Unit of Opco together with a corresponding number of shares of Rice’s non-economic Class B common stock.

 

Following the Initial Public Offering, the Public Stockholders (as defined below) will hold a direct economic equity ownership interest in Rice in the form of shares of Class A common stock, and an indirect ownership interest in Opco through Rice’s ownership of Class A Units of Opco. By contrast, the Initial Stockholders (as defined below) will own direct economic interests in Opco in the form of Class B Units and a corresponding non-economic voting equity interest in Rice in the form of shares of Class B common stock, as well as a small direct interest through the Sponsor Shares (as defined in Note 4). Sponsor Shares were purchased for $10.00 each and, in the absence of an initial Business Combination, will generally participate in liquidation or other payments on a pari passu basis with the Public Shares (as defined below). However, given the relatively de minimis number of Sponsor Shares relative to Public Shares, in many cases the economic, governance or other effects of the Sponsor Shares are not material to the holders of Class A common stock or warrants, and for simplicity, portions of this disclosure may not fully describe or reflect these immaterial effects.

 

Upon the closing of the Initial Public Offering and the Private Placement, approximately $237.3 million of the net proceeds of the sale of the Units in the Initial Public Offering and the sale of the Private Placement Warrants in the Private Placement were placed in a trust account (“Trust Account”) located in the United States with Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company acting as trustee, and invested only in U.S. “government securities” within the meaning of Section 2(a)(16) of the Investment Company Act (as defined below) having a maturity of 185 days or less or in money market funds meeting certain conditions under Rule 2a-7 promulgated under the Investment Company Act which invest only in direct U.S. government treasury obligations, as determined by the Company, until the earlier of: (i) the completion of a Business Combination and (ii) the distribution of the Trust Account as described below.

 

F-7

 

 

RICE ACQUISITION CORP.
NOTES TO CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS

 

The Company’s management has broad discretion with respect to the specific application of the net proceeds of the Initial Public Offering and the sale of the Private Placement Warrants, although substantially all of the net proceeds are intended to be applied generally toward consummating a Business Combination. There is no assurance that the Company will be able to complete a Business Combination successfully. The Company must complete one or more initial Business Combinations having an aggregate fair market value of at least 80% of the net assets held in the Trust Account (excluding the amount of any deferred underwriting discount held in Trust) at the time of the agreement to enter into the initial Business Combination. However, the Company will only complete a Business Combination if the post-business combination company controls 50% or more of the voting securities of the target or is otherwise not required to register as an investment company under the Investment Company Act of 1940, as amended (the “Investment Company Act”).

 

The Company will provide the holders (the “Public Stockholders”) of the Company’s Public Shares with the opportunity to redeem all or a portion of their Public Shares upon the completion of a Business Combination either (i) in connection with a stockholder meeting called to approve the Business Combination or (ii) by means of a tender offer. Unless otherwise stated herein, the term “Public Shares” includes the 2,500 shares of Class A common stock, par value $0.0001 per share, of the Company held by the Sponsor and forming part of the Sponsor Shares. The decision as to whether the Company will seek stockholder approval of a Business Combination or conduct a tender offer will be made by the Company, solely in its discretion. The Public Stockholders will be entitled to redeem their Public Shares for a pro rata portion of the amount then held in the Trust Account (initially anticipated to be $10.00 per Public Share). The per-share amount to be distributed to Public Stockholders who redeem their Public Shares will not be reduced by the deferred underwriting commissions the Company will pay to the underwriters (as discussed in Note 5). These Public Shares will be recorded at a redemption value and classified as temporary equity upon the completion of the Initial Public Offering in accordance with the Financial Accounting Standards Board’s (“FASB”) Accounting Standards Codification (“ASC”) Topic 480 “Distinguishing Liabilities from Equity.” The Company will proceed with a Business Combination if a majority of the shares voted are voted in favor of the Business Combination. The Company will not redeem the Public Shares in an amount that would cause its net tangible assets to be less than $5,000,001. If a stockholder vote is not required by law and the Company does not decide to hold a stockholder vote for business or other reasons, the Company will, pursuant to its Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation (the “Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation”), conduct the redemptions pursuant to the tender offer rules of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) and file tender offer documents with the SEC prior to completing a Business Combination. If, however, stockholder approval of the transaction is required by law, or the Company decides to obtain stockholder approval for business or legal reasons, the Company will offer to redeem shares in conjunction with a proxy solicitation pursuant to the proxy rules and not pursuant to the tender offer rules. Additionally, each public stockholder may elect to redeem their Public Shares irrespective of whether they vote for or against the proposed transaction. If the Company seeks stockholder approval in connection with a Business Combination, the Initial Stockholders (as defined below) have agreed to vote their Founder Shares (as defined below in Note 4), Sponsor Shares and any Public Shares purchased during or after the Initial Public Offering in favor of a Business Combination. In addition, the Initial Stockholders have agreed to waive their redemption rights with respect to their Founder Shares and Public Shares in connection with the completion of a Business Combination.

 

The Amended and Restated Certificate of Incorporation provides that a Public Stockholder, together with any affiliate of such stockholder or any other person with whom such stockholder is acting in concert or as a “group” (as defined under Section 13 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”)), will be restricted from redeeming its shares with respect to more than an aggregate of 20% or more of the Public Shares, without the prior consent of the Company.

 

If the Company is unable to complete a Business Combination within 24 months from the closing of the Initial Public Offering, or October 26, 2022 (the “Combination Period”), the Company will (i) cease all operations except for the purpose of winding up, (ii) as promptly as reasonably possible but not more than ten business days thereafter, redeem the Public Shares, at a per-share price, payable in cash, equal to the aggregate amount then on deposit in the Trust Account including interest earned on the funds held in the Trust Account and not previously released to pay franchise and income taxes of the Company or Opco (less u