The End Of An Era; The OTCBB Has Been Replaced By The OTCQB
Posted by Securities Attorney Laura Anthony | March 17, 2011 Tags: , , , , , , ,

A few months ago I wrote an article predicting that the new “OTC Markets,” formerly known as the Pink Sheets, and it’s OTCQX and OTCQB quotation tiers were replacing the antiquated, formerly FINRA-run OTCBB. Current events add further evidence to this view. Recently, more than 1000 Companies which were trading on both the OTCBB and OTCQB were delisted from the OTCBB and now trade exclusively on the OTCQB tier of the OTC Markets. These entities are quickly becoming known by their new moniker, OTCQB Companies.

The Investment Banking firm of Rodman & Renshaw acquired the OTCBB from FINRA last year.

An OTCBB By Any Other Name

For more than a year leading up to this large scale, mass delistment, it has been impossible to decipher between an OTCBB Company and a Reporting Pink Sheet Company when viewing the OTC Markets website. Both entities appeared under the heading of “OTCQB.” It was essential to reference other source material in order to make the distinction.

The now privately owned and operated OTCBB quietly delisted approximately 1,000 fully reporting and current, public companies from its quotation medium, initially citing “failure to comply with Rule 15c2-11”. Subsequent delistments cited “Ineligible for quotation on OTCBB due to quoting inactivity under SEC Rule 15c2-11.”

Delistments Means Little to Nothing

Most, if not all, of these companies did not receive notice of their “delisting”. Moreover, most, if not all, of these companies still do not know that they are no longer OTCBB quoted companies. In fact, the change has had little if no impact on these companies and will likely not have future impact. Each of these companies continue to be quoted on the OTCQB on the website for OTC Markets.

Issuer Reporting Obligations

Issuers on the OTCQB must be fully reporting and current in their reporting obligations with the SEC. Although the entire Over the Counter is regulated by the SEC and FINRA, the OTC Markets and the OTCBB are both now privately owned and merely serve as quotation mediums. However, and most importantly, the OTC Markets is more user friendly and factually up to date and accurate than the website for the OTCBB. So, if all Over the Counter quotes can be found at and companies trading on the OTCQB have the exact same standards as the OTCBB, and FINRA is no longer directly associated with the OTCBB, is there any reason for the OTCBB to even exist?

The fact sheet on has this to say regarding OTCQB quoted securities:

“With over 94% of all market maker quotes in OTC securities published on OTC Markets Group’s platform vs. 6% on the FINRA BB, it is important that OTC Markets Group provide a separate designation to identify OTC-traded companies that are U.S. registered and reporting. OTC Markets Group has launched the OTCQBtm marketplace to help investors easily identify SEC reporting companies and regulated banks that are current with their disclosure obligations.”

In summary, the curtains have closed on the OTCBB in name only and its business as usual for the new OTCQB.

The Author

Attorney Laura Anthony,
Founding Partner, Legal & Compliance, LLC
Securities, Reverse Mergers, Corporate Transactions

Securities attorney Laura Anthony provides ongoing corporate counsel to small and mid-size public Companies as well as private Companies intending to go public on the Over the Counter Bulletin Board (OTCBB), now known as the OTCQB. For more than a decade Ms. Anthony has dedicated her securities law practice towards being “the big firm alternative.” Clients receive fast and efficient cutting-edge legal service without the inherent delays and unnecessary expense of “partner-heavy” securities law firms.

Ms. Anthony’s focus includes but is not limited to compliance with the reporting requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, (“Exchange Act”) including Forms 10-Q, 10-K and 8-K and the proxy requirements of Section 14.  In addition, Ms. Anthony prepares private placement memorandums, registration statements under both the Exchange Act and Securities Act of 1933, as amended (“Securities Act”).  Moreover, Ms. Anthony represents both target and acquiring companies in reverse and forward mergers, including preparation of deal documents such as Merger Agreements, Stock Purchase Agreements, Asset Purchase Agreements and Reorganization Agreements. Ms. Anthony prepares the necessary documentation and assists in completing the requirements of the Exchange Act, state law and FINRA for corporate changes such as name changes, reverse and forward splits and change of domicile.

Contact Legal & Compliance. LLC for a free initial consultation or second opinion on an existing matter.