AMENDED AND RESTATED
ARTICLES OF INCORPORATION OF
SIMMONS FIRST NATIONAL CORPORATION
Pursuant to, and in accordance with, the Arkansas Business Corporation Act of 1987, the Articles of Incorporation of Simmons First National Corporation are hereby amended and restated as follows:
FIRST: The name of this Corporation is
SIMMONS FIRST NATIONAL CORPORATION.
SECOND: The duration of this Corporation and the period of its existence shall be perpetual.
THIRD: The nature of the business of this Corporation and the objects and purposes proposed to be transacted, promoted or carried on by it are as follows, to-wit:
(a) To act as a holding company and to acquire and own stock or other interest in other businesses of any lawful character, including specifically banks, mortgage loan and servicing businesses, factoring businesses, and other financially oriented businesses; and as shareholder or as owner of other interest in such businesses, to exercise all rights incident thereto;
(b) To do all things herein set forth, and in addition, all such other acts and things necessary or convenient or intended for the attainment of any of the purposes of this Corporation and to participate in, engage in, carry on and conduct any business that a natural person lawfully might or could do insofar as such acts and business undertakings are permitted to be done by a corporation organized under the general corporation laws of the State of Arkansas, with all powers conferred upon corporations, specifically or by inference, under the laws of the State of Arkansas.
FOURTH: The authorized capital stock of this Corporation shall consist of 175,000,000 shares of Class A Common Stock having a par value of $0.01 per share and 40,040,000 shares of Preferred Stock having a par value of $0.01 per share, with the powers, privileges, incidents, preferences and limitations hereinafter set forth below:
(a) Class A Common Stock:
The entire voting power of this Corporation shall be vested in the Class A Common Stock, and the holder of each share of the Class A Common Stock shall be entitled to one vote, in person or by proxy, for each share of such stock standing in the holder’s name on the books of the Corporation.
(b) Preferred Stock:
The Board of Directors is authorized, subject to limitations prescribed by law and the provisions of this Article FOURTH, to provide for the issuance of Preferred Stock, in series, and by filing a certificate pursuant to the applicable law of the State of Arkansas, to establish from time to time the number of shares to be included in each such series, and to fix the designation, powers, preferences and rights of the shares of each such series and the qualifications, limitations or restrictions thereof.
The authority of the Board with respect to each series shall include, but not be limited to, determination of the following:
(1) The number of shares constituting that series and the distinctive designation of that series;
(2) The dividend rate on the shares of that series, whether dividends shall be cumulative, and, if so, from which date or dates, and the relative rights of priority, if any, of payment of dividends on shares of that series;
(3) Whether that series shall have voting rights, in addition to the voting rights provided by law, and, if so, the terms of such voting rights;
(4) Whether that series shall have conversion privileges, and, if so, the terms and conditions of such conversion, including provision for adjustment of the conversion rate in such events as the Board of Directors shall determine;
(5) Whether or not the shares of that series shall be redeemable, and, if so, the terms and conditions of such redemption, including the date or date upon or after which they shall be redeemable, and the amount per share payable in case of redemption, which amount may vary under different conditions and at different redemption dates;
(6) Whether that series shall have a sinking fund for the redemption or purchase of shares of that series, and, if so, the terms and amount of such sinking fund;
(7) The rights of the shares of that series in the event of voluntary or involuntary liquidation, dissolution or winding up of the corporation, and the relative rights of priority, if any, of payment of shares of that series;
(8) Any other relative rights, preferences and limitations of that series.
The aggregate liquidation preference of all shares of Preferred Stock shall not exceed $80,000,000. The aggregate liquidation preference may be allocated among shares in different series in such manner and amounts as the Board may determine in the resolution establishing such series.
Dividends on outstanding shares of Preferred Stock shall be paid or declared and set apart for payment before any dividends shall be paid or declared and set apart for payment on the common shares with respect to the same dividend period.
(1) No shareholder of the Corporation shall because of the ownership of stock have a pre-emptive or other right to purchase, subscribe for, or take any part of the stock or any part of the notes, debentures, bonds or other securities convertible into or carrying options or warrants to purchase stock of the Corporation issued, optioned, or sold by it. Any part of the capital stock authorized by the Articles of Incorporation or any amendment thereto duly filed, and any part of the notes, debentures, bonds or other securities convertible into or carrying options or warrants to purchase stock of the Corporation may, at any time, be issued, optioned for sale, and sold or disposed of by the Corporation pursuant to resolution of its Board of Directors to such persons and upon such terms as to such Board may seem proper without first offering such stock or securities or any part thereof to existing shareholders.
(2) The Board of Directors of the Corporation shall have the power, at their discretion, to prepare and cause to be issued convertible bonds or debentures of the Corporation, whether or not secured by a sinking fund, pledge or other commitment, having such rights, conversion options into the Class A Common Stock of the Corporation, bearing such interest, having such maturity dates, with such restrictions, incidents, privileges, and characteristics, and in such amounts, total and individually, as may be determined by the Board of Directors to be appropriate for the corporate purposes.
FIFTH: The Corporation shall not commence business until it has received consideration of the value of at least Three Hundred Dollars for the issuance of its shares of stock.
SIXTH: The initial office of the Corporation shall be at Fifth and Main Streets in the City of Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and the name of the resident agent of the Corporation is George A. Makris, whose address is 501 Main Street, Pine Bluff, Arkansas, 71601.
SEVENTH: The name and post office address of the incorporator is Wayne A. Stone, 10 Westridge Drive, Pine Bluff, Arkansas.
EIGHTH: The Board of Directors of this Corporation shall consist of not less than five (5) nor more than twenty-five (25) persons, the exact number of directors within such minimum and maximum limits to be fixed and determined, from time to time, by resolution of majority of the full Board of Directors or by resolution of the shareholders at any annual or special meeting thereof. Any vacancy in the Board of Directors for any reason, including an increase in the number thereof, may be filled by action of the Board of Directors.
At each meeting of shareholders for the election of directors at which a quorum exists, each nominee for director shall be elected by a majority of the votes cast by the shares present in person or represented by proxy at the meeting and entitled to vote on such nominee’s election; provided, however, that if the election of directors is contested, directors shall be elected by a plurality of the votes cast by the shares present in person or represented by proxy at the meeting and entitled to vote thereon. A “majority of the votes cast” means the number of shares voted “for” a nominee’s election must exceed the number of shares voted “against” such nominee’s election, with abstentions and broker non-votes being disregarded. An election of directors shall be considered “contested” if the number of nominees for director is greater than the number of directors to be elected.
NINTH: The affairs and business of this Corporation shall be controlled and conducted by the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors may make By-Laws for the management of the affairs and business of this Corporation, from time to time, and may amend or repeal such By-Laws. In addition, the Corporation and Board of Directors shall have all the powers provided for boards of directors and corporations under the laws of the State of Arkansas, including, but not limited to, the power to create an Executive Committee from among their number, to provide for the day-to-day management and operations of the Corporation’s affairs.
TENTH: The private property of the stockholders shall not be subject to the payment of the corporate debts to any extent whatsoever.
ELEVENTH: (a) In addition to any affirmative vote required by law, and except as otherwise expressly provided in this Article:
(1) any merger or consolidation of the Corporation with or into any other Corporation; or
(2) any sale, lease, exchange, mortgage, pledge, transfer or other disposition (in one transaction or a series of related transactions) of all or substantially all of the property and assets of the Corporation; or
(3) the adoption of any plan or proposal of liquidation or dissolution of the Corporation; or
(4) any reclassification of the Corporation’s securities (including any stock split);
shall require the affirmative vote of the holders of at least 80% of the outstanding Voting Shares, unless such Business Combination is approved by 80% of the Continuing Directors (as hereinafter defined) of the Corporation. Such affirmative vote of the shareholders or directors shall be required, notwithstanding the fact that no vote may be required, or that some lesser percentage may be specified, by law or in any agreement or otherwise.
(b) The provisions of section (a) of this Article shall not be applicable to any Business Combination, and such Business Combination shall require only such affirmative vote as is required by law and any other provisions of these Articles of Incorporation, if any, if such transaction has been approved by 80% of the Continuing Directors of the Corporation.
(c) For purposes of this Article:
(1) “Business Combination” means any transaction which is referred to in any one or more paragraphs (1) through (4) of section (a) of this Article.
(2) “Person” includes a natural person, corporation, partnership, association, joint stock company, trust, unincorporated association or other entity. When two or more Persons act as a partnership, limited partnership, syndicate or other group for the purpose of acquiring, holding or disposing of common stock, such syndicate or group shall be deemed a Person for purposes of this Article.
(3) “Interested Stockholder” means any Person (other than the Corporation), any Subsidiary (as hereinafter defined) or any Employee Stock Ownership Trust or other compensation plan of the Corporation, who or which as of any date immediately prior to the consummation of any transaction described in this Article:
(i) is the beneficial owner, directly or indirectly, of more than 10% of the Voting Shares; or
(ii) is an Affiliate of the Corporation and at any time within two years prior thereto was the beneficial owner, directly or indirectly, of not less than 6% of the then outstanding Voting Shares.
(4) “Tender Offer” means a tender offer for cash made in accordance with the then applicable rules and regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission issued pursuant to Section 14(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended.
(5) “Beneficial Ownership” means any right or power through any contract, arrangement, understanding, relationship or otherwise to exercise, directly or indirectly, (1) voting power, which includes the power to vote, or to direct the voting of, the Voting Shares, or (2) investment power, which includes the power to dispose of, or to direct the disposition of, the Voting Shares.
Notwithstanding the foregoing, Beneficial Ownership shall not include (1) ownership by a registered broker holding shares of Voting Shares in its street name for customers, or (2) ownership by an employee plan maintained for the Company’s employees, provided that each employee is entitled to vote the shares in the trust which are allocable to him.
(6) A person shall be a “beneficial owner” of any Voting Shares:
(i) which such Person or any of its Affiliates or Associates (as hereinafter defined) beneficially owns, directly or indirectly; or
(ii) which such Person or any of its Affiliates or Associates has (a) the right to acquire (whether such right is exercisable immediately or only after the passage of time), pursuant to any agreement, arrangement or understanding, or upon the exercise of conversion rights, exchange rights, warrants or options, or otherwise, or (b) the right to vote pursuant to any agreement, arrangement or understanding, or
(iii) which are beneficially owned, directly or indirectly, by any other Person with which such first mentioned Person or any of its Affiliates or Associates has any agreement, arrangement or understanding for the purpose of acquiring, holding, voting or disposing of any Voting Shares.
(7) An “Affiliate” of, or a Person “affiliated” with, a specified Person, is a Person that directly or indirectly through one or more intermediaries controls, or is controlled by, or is under common control with the Person specified.
(8) The term “Associate” used to indicate a relationship with any Person means (1) any corporation or organization (other than the Corporation or a majority-owned subsidiary of the Corporation) of which such Person is an officer or partner or is, directly or indirectly, the beneficial owner of 10% or more of any class of equity securities, (2) any trust or other estate in which such Person has a substantial beneficial interest or as to which such Person serves as trustee or in a similar fiduciary capacity, or (3) any relative or spouse of such Person, or any relative of such spouse, who has the same home as such Person.
(9) The outstanding Voting Shares shall include shares deemed owned through application of paragraph (6) of section (c) above, but shall not include any other Voting Shares which may be issuable pursuant to any agreement or upon exercise of conversion rights, warrants, or options, or otherwise.
(10) “Proponent” means any Person (or its Affiliates or Associates) which makes any Tender Offer for the Voting Shares or proposes any Business Combination directly affecting the Corporation or its subsidiaries.
(11) “Continuing Directors” means the incumbent directors of the Corporation on the date immediately preceding the date the Proponent (or its Affiliates or Associates) became an Interested Stockholder. In the event the Proponent (or its Affiliates or Associates) is not an Interested Stockholder, then all directors of the Corporation shall be Continuing Directors.
(12) “Subsidiary” shall mean a corporation of which a majority of each class of equity is owned, directly or indirectly, by the Corporation.
(13) “Voting Shares” means any and all outstanding shares of capital stock of the Corporation entitled to vote generally in the election of directors.
(d) A majority of the Continuing Directors shall have the power and duty to determine for the purposes of this Article on the basis of information known to them, (1) if a Business Combination is proposed by or on behalf of an Interested Stockholder or Affiliate of an Interested Stockholder, (2) the number of Voting Shares beneficially owned by any Person, (3) whether a person is an Affiliate or Associate of another, or (4) whether a person has an agreement, arrangement or understanding with another as to the matters referred to in paragraph (6) of section (c) above.
(e) Nothing contained in this Article shall be construed to relieve any Interested Stockholder from any fiduciary obligation imposed by law. The Board of Directors is specifically authorized to seek equitable relief, including an injunction, to enforce the provisions of the Article.
TWELFTH: (a) Every person who was or is a party of, is threatened to be made party to, or is involved in, any action, suit or proceeding, whether civil, criminal, administrative or investigative, by reason of the fact that he is or was a director or officer of the Corporation (or is or was serving at the request of the Corporation as a director or officer of another corporation, or as its representative in a partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise) shall be indemnified and held harmless to the fullest extent legally permissible under and pursuant to any procedure specified in the Arkansas Business Corporation Act of 1987, as amended and as the same may be amended hereafter, against all expenses, liabilities and losses (including attorney’s fees, judgments, fines and amounts paid or to be paid in settlement) reasonably incurred or suffered by him in connection therewith. Such right of indemnification shall be a contract right that may enforced in any lawful manner by such person, and the Corporation may in the discretion of the Board of Directors enter into indemnification agreements with its directors and officers. Such right of indemnification shall not be exclusive of any other right which such director or officer may have or hereafter acquire and, without limiting the generality of such statement, he shall be entitled to his rights of indemnification under any agreement, vote of stockholders, provision of law or otherwise, as well as his rights under this section.
(b) The Board of Directors may cause the Corporation to purchase and maintain insurance on behalf of any person who is, or was, a director of officer of the Corporation, or is or was serving at the request of the Corporation as a director or officer of another corporation or as its representative in a partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise, against any liability asserted against such person and incurred in any such capacity or arising out of such status, whether or not the Corporation would have the power to indemnify such person.
(c) Expenses incurred by a director or officer of the Corporation in defending a civil or criminal action, suit or proceeding by reason of the fact that he is, or was, a director or officer of the Corporation (or is or was serving at the Corporation’s request as a director or officer of another corporation or as its representative in a partnership, joint venture, trust or other enterprise) shall be paid by the Corporation in advance of the final disposition of such action, suit or proceeding (1) upon authorization (i) by the Board of Directors by a majority vote of a quorum consisting of directors who are not parties to the action, suit or proceeding, (ii) if such a quorum is not obtainable or, even if obtainable, if a quorum of disinterested directors so directs, then by independent legal counsel in a written opinion, or (iii) by the shareholders; and (2) upon receipt of an undertaking by, or on behalf of, such person to repay such amount, if it shall ultimately be determined that he or she is not entitled to be indemnified by the Corporation as authorized by relevant provisions of the Arkansas Business Corporation Act of 1987 as the same now exists or as it may hereafter be amended.
(d) If any provision of this Article or the application thereof to any person or circumstance is adjudicated invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this Article which lawfully can be given without the invalid provision of this Article.
THIRTEENTH: In the event of any Tender Offer, merger offer or other acquisitive offer for the shares or assets of the Corporation or any of its subsidiaries, then, in addition to any other action required by law, the Board of Directors shall consider the following factors in evaluating such offer, prior to making any recommendation with respect to such offer:
(a) The likely impact of the proposed acquisitive transaction on the Corporation, its subsidiaries, its shareholders, its employees and the communities served by the Corporation and its subsidiaries;
(b) The timeliness of the offer and proposed transaction considering the current business climate and the current business activities and plans of the Corporation and its subsidiaries;
(c) The possibility of any legal defects, including but not limited to bank and bank holding company regulatory matters, in the offer of proposed transaction;
(d) The risk of non-consummation of the offer due to inadequate financing, failure to obtain regulatory approval or such other risks as the Board may identify;
(e) The current market price of the stock and the assets of the Corporation and its subsidiaries;
(f) The book value of the stock of the Corporation;
(g) The relationship of the proposed price in the offer to the Board’s opinion of the current value of the Corporation and its subsidiaries in an independently negotiated transaction;
(h) The relationship of the proposed price in the offer to the Board’s opinion of the future value of the Corporation and its subsidiaries as an independent entity; and
(i) Any other factors which the Board deems pertinent.
No director who is an Affiliate or Associate (as defined in Article Eleventh above) of the offeror shall participate in any manner whatsoever in the above evaluation of the offer.
FOURTEENTH: Any amendment, repeal or modification of any of the terms of the Articles of Incorporation of the Corporation shall, in addition to all other requirements of law, require the approval of 80% of the shares entitled to vote on such amendment, repeal or modification, unless such amendment, repeal or modification shall have been approved by an affirmative vote of 80% of the Continuing Directors of the Corporation (as defined in Article Eleventh above).
FIFTEENTH: The Corporation elects to be governed by and subject to the Arkansas Business Corporation Act of 1987.
SIXTEENTH: To the fullest extent permitted by the Arkansas Business Corporation Act of 1987, as it now exists or may hereafter be amended, a director of this Corporation shall not be liable to the Corporation or its shareholders for monetary damages for breach of fiduciary duty as a director.
EIGHTEENTH: There is hereby created out of the authorized and unissued shares of preferred stock of the Corporation a series of preferred stock designated as the “Series D Preferred Stock, Par Value $0.01 Per Share”, having 767 authorized shares.
The Certificate of Designations and Standard Provisions attached hereto as Exhibit 1 shall set forth the terms of such Series D Preferred Stock, Par Value $0.01 Per Share.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the President of the Corporation has set his hand this 14th day of July, 2021.
|SIMMONS FIRST NATIONAL CORPORATION|
|By||/s/ Robert A. Fehlman|
|Robert A. Fehlman, President|