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Washington, D.C. 20549








Date of Report (Date of earliest event reported): April 17, 2024


Direct Digital Holdings, Inc.

(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)


Delaware   001-41261   87-2306185
(State or other jurisdiction
of incorporation)
File Number)
  (IRS Employer
Identification No.)


1177 West Loop South, Suite 1310
Houston, Texas
(Address of principal executive offices)   (Zip Code)


Registrant’s telephone number, including area code: (832) 402-1051


Not Applicable

(Former name or former address, if changed since last report)


Check the appropriate box below if the Form 8-K filing is intended to simultaneously satisfy the filing obligation of the registrant under any of the following provisions:


¨ Written communications pursuant to Rule 425 under the Securities Act (17 CFR 230.425)
¨ Soliciting material pursuant to Rule 14a-12 under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14a-12)
¨ Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 14d-2(b) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.14d-2(b))
¨ Pre-commencement communications pursuant to Rule 13e-4(c) under the Exchange Act (17 CFR 240.13e-4(c))


Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Exchange Act:


Title of each class   Trading
  Name of each exchange
on which registered
Class A common stock, par value $0.001 per share   DRCT   The Nasdaq Stock Market LLC


Indicate by check mark whether the registrant is an emerging growth company as defined in Rule 405 of the Securities Act of 1933 (§230.405 of this chapter) or Rule 12b-2 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”) (§240.12b-2 of this chapter).


Emerging growth company x


If an emerging growth company, indicate by check mark if the registrant has elected not to use the extended transition period for complying with any new or revised financial accounting standards provided pursuant to Section 13(a) of the Exchange Act. ¨







Item 3.01 Notice of Delisting or Failure to Satisfy a Continued Listing Rule or Standard; Transfer of Listing.


On April 17, 2024, Direct Digital Holdings, Inc. (the “Company”) received a notice (the “Notice”) from the Listing Qualifications Department of the Nasdaq Stock Market LLC (“Nasdaq”), which indicated that, as a result of the Company’s delay in filing its Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2023 (the “Form 10-K”) by the applicable due date, the Company was not in compliance with Nasdaq Listing Rule 5250(c)(1) (the “Rule”), which requires Nasdaq-listed companies to timely file all required periodic financial reports with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”).


The Notice states that the Company has 60 calendar days from the date of the Notice, or until June 16, 2024, to submit to Nasdaq a plan to regain compliance with the Rule. If Nasdaq accepts the Company’s plan to regain compliance, then Nasdaq may grant the Company up to 180 calendar days from the prescribed due date of the Form 10-K, or until October 14, 2024, to file the Form 10-K to regain compliance; however, there can be no assurance that these events will occur.


Neither the Notice nor the Company’s noncompliance with the Rule has an immediate effect on the listing or trading of the Company’s securities on Nasdaq, which will continue to trade on The Nasdaq Capital Market under the symbol “DRCT.” The Company continues to work diligently to complete the Form 10-K and plans to file the same as promptly as possible to regain compliance with the Rule. 


Item 4.01 Changes in Registrant’s Certifying Accountant.


On April 17, 2024, Marcum LLP (“Marcum”), the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm, notified the Company and the Audit Committee of the Company’s board of directors (the “Audit Committee”) of Marcum’s decision to resign as the independent registered public accounting firm of the Company, effective immediately. Although their audit was not designed to identify or detect violations of law or fraud, Marcum’s resignation was not a result of any violation of law or fraud of the Company identified during its audit procedures to date.


The reports of Marcum on the Company’s consolidated financial statements as of and for the fiscal years ended December 31, 2022 and 2021 did not contain an adverse opinion or a disclaimer of opinion and were not qualified or modified as to uncertainty, audit scope or accounting principles.


Additionally, during the fiscal years ended December 31, 2022 and 2021, as well as subsequent interim periods preceding Marcum’s resignation, there were no “disagreements” (as that term is described in Item 304(a)(1)(iv) of Regulation S-K and related instructions) between the Company and Marcum with respect to any matter relating to accounting principles or practices, financial statement disclosure or auditing scope or procedures which, if not resolved to the satisfaction of Marcum, would have caused Marcum to make reference to the subject matter of the disagreements in its reports on the Company’s consolidated financial statement with respect to such periods, and there were no “reportable events” (as that term is defined in Item 304(a)(1)(v) of Regulation S-K and the related instructions), except for the material weakness identified in the Company’s internal controls over completeness of revenue that existed as of December 31, 2022, which was previously disclosed in Item 9A of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2022 and which was discussed between the Audit Committee and Marcum.


The Company and the Audit Committee are actively seeking a new independent registered public accounting firm and intend to engage a firm as soon as practicable to complete the audit and file the Form 10-K. However, there can be no assurance as to the timing of such engagement or subsequent completion of any audit. The Company expects to authorize Marcum to respond fully to the inquiries of the successor independent accounting firm once engaged, including related to prior years’ audits and the identified material weakness described above.


The Company has provided Marcum with a copy of this Current Report on Form 8-K prior to its filing with the SEC and requested that Marcum furnish the Company with a letter addressed to the SEC stating whether or not Marcum agrees with the above disclosures in this Item 4.01. A copy of the letter from Marcum dated April 23, 2024 is attached hereto as Exhibit 16.1.




Item 7.01 Regulation FD Disclosure.


On April 23, 2024, the Company issued a press release in accordance with Nasdaq Listing Rule 5810(b) announcing that the Company had received the Notice. A copy of the press release is attached hereto as Exhibit 99.1.


The information under this Item 7.01 of this Current Report on Form 8-K, including Exhibit 99.1, is being furnished and shall not be deemed “filed” for purposes of Section 18 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or otherwise subject to the liabilities of that Section. The information under this Item 8.01 of this Current Report on Form 8-K shall not be incorporated by reference into any filing under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, except as shall otherwise be expressly set forth by specific reference in such filing.




This Current Report on Form 8-K may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws that are subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties.


As used below, “we,” “us,” and “our” refer to the Company. We use words such as “could,” “would,” “may,” “might,” “will,” “expect,” “likely,” “believe,” “continue,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “intend,” “plan,” “project” and other similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements, but not all forward-looking statements include these words. All of our forward-looking statements involve estimates and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or implied by the forward-looking statements. Accordingly, any such statements are qualified in their entirety by reference to the information described under the caption “Risk Factors” and elsewhere in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K (the “Form 10-K”) and subsequent periodic and or current reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


The forward-looking statements contained in this Current Report on Form 8-K are based on assumptions that we have made in light of our industry experience and our perceptions of historical trends, current conditions, expected future developments and other factors we believe are appropriate under the circumstances. As you read and consider this Current Report on Form 8-K, you should understand that these statements are not guarantees of performance or results. They involve risks, uncertainties (many of which are beyond our control) and assumptions. Although we believe that these forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, you should be aware that many factors could affect our actual operating and financial performance and cause our performance to differ materially from the performance expressed in or implied by the forward-looking statements. We believe these factors include, but are not limited to, the following: the restrictions and covenants imposed upon us by our credit facilities; our ability to secure additional financing to meet our capital needs; any significant fluctuations caused by our high customer concentration; risks related to non-payment by our clients; reputational and other harms caused by our failure to detect advertising fraud; operational and performance issues with our platform, whether real or perceived, including a failure to respond to technological changes or to upgrade our technology systems; restrictions on the use of third-party “cookies,” mobile device IDs or other tracking technologies, which could diminish our platform’s effectiveness; unfavorable publicity and negative public perception about our industry, particularly concerns regarding data privacy and security relating to our industry’s technology and practices, and any perceived failure to comply with laws and industry self-regulation; our failure to manage our growth effectively; the difficulty in identifying and integrating any future acquisitions or strategic investments; any changes or developments in legislative, judicial, regulatory or cultural environments related to information collection, use and processing; challenges related to our buy-side clients that are destination marketing organizations and that operate as public/private partnerships; any strain on our resources or diversion of our management’s attention as a result of being a public company; the intense competition of the digital advertising industry and our ability to effectively compete against current and future competitors; any significant inadvertent disclosure or breach of confidential and/or personal information we hold, or of the security of our or our customers’, suppliers’ or other partners’ computer systems; as a holding company, we depend on distributions from Direct Digital Holdings, LLC (“DDH LLC”) to pay our taxes, expenses (including payments under the Tax Receivable Agreement) and any amount of any dividends we may pay to the holders of our common stock; the fact that DDH LLC is controlled by DDM, whose interest may differ from those of our public stockholders; any risks associated with the material weakness that was identified in our review of internal control over financial reporting as of December 31, 2022; any failure by us to maintain or implement effective internal controls or to detect fraud; our ability to engage an independent registered public accounting firm and complete the audit of our financial statements for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2023; and other factors and assumptions discussed in our Form 10-K and subsequent periodic and current reports we may file with the SEC. Should one or more of these risks or uncertainties materialize, or should any of these assumptions prove to be incorrect, our actual operating and financial performance may vary in material respects from the performance projected in these forward-looking statements. Further, any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made, and except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statement contained in this Current Report on Form 8-K to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which it is made or to reflect the occurrence of anticipated or unanticipated events or circumstances. New factors that could cause our business not to develop as we expect emerge from time to time, and it is not possible for us to predict all of them. Further, we cannot assess the impact of each currently known or new factor on our results of operations or the extent to which any factor, or combination of factors, may cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in any forward-looking statements.




Item 9.01 Financial Statements and Exhibits.


  (d) Exhibits




Exhibit No.   Description
16.1   Letter from Marcum LLP to the Securities and Exchange Commission, dated April 23, 2024.
99.1   Press Release, dated April 23, 2024.
104   Cover Page Interactive Data File, formatted in Inline Extensible Business Reporting Language (iXBRL).






Pursuant to the requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Registrant has duly caused this report to be signed on its behalf by the undersigned hereunto duly authorized.


April 23, 2024
Direct Digital Holdings, Inc.
  /s/ Diana P. Diaz
  Diana P. Diaz
Chief Financial Officer