Your End-of-Year Checklist

For most of us, the end of the year is a mad dash to complete ongoing projects, while at the same time attempting to close out all those “2023” projects we put off until now.  For our clients, most of whom have accepted capital from investors, there’s even more to think about. You not only have to handle your own EOY, but you also have to provide support to your investors who require information from you for their own EOY.  

Each year around this time we send out a note to our clients reminding them of a few key things we see come due in Q4 year after year, and how we can help. This year we’ve decided to share that list with all of you.  

Reviewing and gathering details for EOY investor updates {for funds + startups}. Most of our fund clients send (at least) quarterly updates to their investors about how things are going with the fund: how their investments are doing, what’s happening with the team, where things have gone well or not so well (it happens to everyone). Whatever you include, you want to make sure it’s clear, concise, and 100% accurate. 

Helping prepare for (or helping present at) LPAC meetings {for funds}. If you have an LPAC, it’s a great idea to get them together before the end of the year. Not only is your LPAC required to weigh in on certain matters (this is typically set forth in your LPA), but they are also a valuable resource. Do you have a portco that’s struggling? Are you looking for a new hire or service provider? LPAC are often composed of extremely experienced and savvy investors and they have a vested interest in your success. If you have a problem, chances are good someone on your LPAC can help. 

Helping prepare for (or helping present at) Board meetings {for startups}. You probably aren’t required to hold an EOY Board meeting (check your Bylaws), but it’s often still a good time to get the band together. There may be necessary EOY business you need to run by the Board, or specific challenges the Board needs to start talking through now (before they become actual problems). Particularly given many of your Boards include investor representatives, now’s a great time to show them how thoughtful you are in leading this company and in making sure your key investors have everything they need from you for their own EOY checklist. 

Reviewing side letters for any EOY reporting obligations {for funds + startups}. Many side letters include reporting obligations, some of which come due at EOY. Now is a good time to take a look back at those letters you signed way back when to make sure you are meeting your obligations and keeping your LPs happy. 

Getting Q4 deals closed {for funds}. It’s been a slow year. Plenty of funds pulled back on investing following the banking crisis. That slowdown then continued into the typically-slow summer season. With capital to deploy and startups eager to get money in to fund their 2024 budget, many funds are packing three quarters of investing into Q4. The earlier you get these projects going the more likely are to close before year-end.  

Ensuring you’re meeting all your obligations under your corporate Bylaws {for startups}. Remember those Bylaws you signed way back when, when your C Corporation was first formed? Chances are good you don’t because chances are good you never read them. We’re not trying to shame anyone here, just remind you that these are documents that have a significant impact on how your Board (which technically is in charge of your company) operates. Now is the time to dust them off and make sure you’ve covered all your annual bases, and maybe even start planning out meetings for 2024. That refresher may serve to remind you of things like your annual obligation (for all Delaware C Corporations) to have a shareholder meeting. 

Get up and move {for funds + startups}. We’re all looking for a good biohack and here’s our new favorite. A recent study has shown that getting up from your desk for just five minutes can significantly improve your health. People who moved five minutes every half hour saw blood sugar spikes after a meal reduced by almost 60%! They were also, not surprisingly, in better moods than their purely sedentary counterparts. Yes, it’s hard to get up in the middle of a good work session or pull yourself away from your inbox before responding to just one. more. email. At the same time, we all know that feeling of stuckness that comes with too much time sitting in one place staring at a little box. Food for thought! 

We get it. The end of the year is crazy, and this year seems particularly so. It’s like we’re making up for all of 2023 in a two-month sprint, while also dealing with ongoing global crises, while also just trying to stay afloat. If there’s anything we can do to help, you know how to reach us. In the meantime, we’ll be ticking through our own checklist, trying to stay calm and organized enough to take the occasional pause to enjoy all the glorious, festive things that happen these last two months of every year. Now get up and go for a walk! 

-- Jessie Gabriel

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