Commitments and Contingencies
|3 Months Ended|
Mar. 31, 2020
|Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]|
|Commitments and Contingencies||
11. COMMITMENTS AND CONTINGENCIES
JAMES CHRISTODOULOU TERMINATION
Effective March 13, 2020, the Company terminated the employment of the Company’s President and Chief Operating Officer, James Christodoulou. No amounts are owed to Mr. Christodoulou pursuant to the terms of his employment letter.
LITIGATION AND DISPUTES
In July 2017, the Company was sued by Zwick and Banyai PLLC and Jack Zwick. The case alleges a breach of contract and unjust enrichment for failure to pay invoices in the aggregate amount of $53,069 for services rendered, plus interest and costs. The Company is one of six defendants in the case.
On October 26, 2018, the Company filed amended affirmative defenses. Following that, there was no record activity in the case and on September 20, 2019, the Court entered its Notice of Lack of Prosecution and Order to Appear for Hearing on November 19, 2019. When Plaintiffs failed to appear for the hearing, the Court dismissed the case. A couple of weeks later, Plaintiffs filed a motion to vacate the dismissal, asserting that they had moved offices in June of 2019, and were never provided notice of the hearing at their new address. At the January 23, 2020 hearing on Plaintiffs’ motion to vacate, the Court vacated the dismissal over the objections of counsel and the case is once again pending.
On January 31, 2020, the Company’s new attorney for this matter filed a notice of appearance and took over as defense counsel. On February 11, 2020, Jack Zwick and Zwick & Banyai PLLC each served a Request for Production of Documents on the Company, and Zwick & Banyai PLLC served a set of 14 Interrogatories. The Company’s responses to the discovery requests are due on May 18, 2020.
On March 26, 2020, James Christodoulou, the former President and Chief Operating Officer of the Company, filed a Complaint in the Miami-Dade County Court, State of Florida, James Christodoulou vs. Blink Charging Co. et al. The Complaint asserts claims against the Company, as well as Michael Farkas, Aviv Hilo and Yechiel Baron. Mr. Farkas is Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer. Messrs. Hilo and Baron are the Company’s General Counsel and Assistant General Counsel, respectively. The Complaint asserts claims for breach of contract in connection with Mr. Christodoulou’s termination by the Company in March 2020, as well as claims under Florida state law for alleged retaliatory termination and slander. Among other things, Mr. Christodoulou asserts that the Company terminated his employment without cause and in retaliation for his alleged plan to disclose that Company executives had engaged in alleged “questionable business practices”. The Complaint seeks unspecified monetary damages but alleges that such damages exceed $1 million. The Company intends to defend the claims vigorously.
DONALD ENGEL EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENT
Effective January 9, 2020, Donald Engel, a current member of the Company’s Board of Directors, entered into an employment agreement with the Company. The employment agreement with Mr. Engel extends for a term expiring on January 9, 2021, subject to automatic renewal for two additional one-year periods if not otherwise previously terminated by either party. Pursuant to the employment agreement. The employment agreement provides that Mr. Engel will receive a base salary at an annual rate of $175,000 for services rendered in such position. In addition, he will be eligible to earn stock options to purchase up to 700,000 shares of our common stock, in increments of 140,000 options on each occasion that the Company executes an agreement for the sale or deployment of electric vehicle charging stations or ancillary eco-friendly energy products with a customer he has introduced to the Company. The stock options will have an exercise price equal to the closing market price of our common stock immediately prior to the issuance date, expire five years after the issuance date and be subject to the terms of the Company’s 2018 Incentive Compensation Plan. On January 20, 2020, the Company granted immediately vested options to purchase an aggregate of 140,000 shares of common stock at an exercise price of $2.05 per share to the employee with a grant date fair value of $252,309 which was recognized during the three months ended March 31, 2020.
The employment agreement provides for termination by the Company for cause upon conviction of a felony, misconduct resulting in significant economic or reputational harm to the Company, any act of fraud or a material breach of his obligations to us. Upon a change of control of the Company, Mr. Engel’s employment will terminate and he will be entitled to all unpaid and outstanding salary and expenses due through the termination date. The employment agreement also contains covenants restricting Mr. Engel from engaging in any activities competitive with the Company’s business during the term of the employment agreement and two years thereafter, and prohibiting him from disclosure of confidential information regarding us at any time. Mr. Engel will continue to be a member of the Company’s Board but will no longer qualify as an “independent director” under Nasdaq rules.
MICHAEL P. RAMA EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENT
In February 2020, the Company entered into an Employment Offer Letter with Mr. Rama. Pursuant to the Offer Letter, Mr. Rama agreed to devote his full business efforts and time to the Company as its Chief Financial Officer. The Offer Letter extends for a term expiring on February 10, 2022 and is automatically renewable for an additional one-year period. The Offer Letter provides that Mr. Rama is entitled to receive an annual base salary of $300,000, payable in regular installments in accordance with the Company’s general payroll practices. Mr. Rama will be eligible for an annual performance cash bonus of 25% of his base salary based on the satisfaction of certain key performance indicators set with the Board’s Compensation Committee. Mr. Rama will be entitled to receive equity awards under the Company’s 2018 Incentive Compensation Plan with an aggregate annual award value equal to 50% of his base salary in the form of restricted stock and stock options. Mr. Rama has also received a $50,000 cash signing bonus.
If Mr. Rama’s employment is terminated by the Company other than for Cause (which includes willful material misconduct and willful failure to materially perform his responsibilities to the Company), he is entitled to receive severance equal to up to 12 months of his base salary. If there is a buy-out or a “change of control,” Mr. Rama will also be entitled to obtain his base salary for a period of 12 months as a severance payment. Mr. Rama is entitled to vacation and other employee benefits in accordance with the Company’s policies.
The entire disclosure for commitments and contingencies.
Reference 1: http://fasb.org/us-gaap/role/ref/legacyRef