If you ever wondered what it takes to change a company’s stock ticker, then wonder no more. Cervitude Investor Relations is here to debunk the mystery. We will start by quoting some of the industry’s leading authorities:
According to the Finra, “Name or Trading Symbol Changes. These changes will appear on customer account statements and in account holdings. A company might make these changes to reflect its business focus or ownership more closely, or to distinguish itself from other companies. These changes may require the company to get a new CUSIP, the unique nine-symbol identifier assigned to most financial instruments.” (https://www.finra.org/investors/insights/corporate-actions-public-companies-what-you-should-know)
According to NYSE.com, “Reserve Your Ticker Symbol: Choosing your ticker symbol is an initial step in the life of a public company. An issuer’s symbol is unique and can reinforce branding initiatives. NYSE, NYSE American and NYSE Arca use up to four-character symbols. The SEC’s uniform system for the selection and reservation of securities trading symbols gives issuers on all participant exchanges the right to retain their symbols should they transfer to a new exchange.” (https://www.nyse.com/listings-process) See also,
According to SecuritiesLawyer101.com, “The last step in going public transactions is most often obtaining a stock trading or ticker symbol from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (“FINRA”). For a company to obtain a ticker, a market maker must submit a Form 211 on the issuer’s behalf to FINRA. This last step is required of all companies including those filing Form S-1 registration statements with the SEC. Only a Market Maker can submit a Form 211 to obtain a ticker symbol assignment. An issuer cannot submit the form itself. As such, the sponsoring market maker plays an important role in the going public process.” (https://www.securitieslawyer101.com/2015/market-maker/)
In short, you will need a market maker, an approval from Finra and most likely a new CUSIP number (as all publicly traded securities are cataloged with the CUSIP number) if you are a newly traded public company or simply changing from one symbol to another. Contacting the exchange you are trading on currently is recommended as well as retaining experienced securities law counsel.