Paper stock certificates, once a common symbol of ownership in a public company, have become increasingly rare, and for some companies, have recently been completely replaced with electronic book-entry shares.
Some public companies may choose to keep paper stock certificates as an option for their shareholders because some shareholders appreciate the nostalgia associated with a tangible stock certificate, or otherwise prefer to possess physical shares. But for others interested in reducing costs and increasing administrative convenience to shareholders and company alike, the paper stock certificate can be replaced with electronic shares registered on a system known as the Direct Registration System.
In the case of restricted stock held by employees of your company in paper form, it can greatly reduce the timing of removing restrictions on those shares when they vest if you transfer all of the physical shares into electronic form in advance. If your public company would be interested in eliminating paper stock certificates, please feel free to contact us for assistance with the process.