Corrections or additions?
This article by Michael Schumacher was prepared for the February
28, 2001 edition of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.
Stock Options: Still Enticing
In the final days of the last millennium many dot com
employees became paper millionaires overnight thanks to payments of
stock options rather than hard cash. While many of those options are
now worthless, it’s not surprising that employees in all industries
now find this method of payment attractive, or at least want it as
part of their compensation package.
"Employees are becoming more sophisticated and demanding more
than just a salary from their employers," says Ken Zuerlis
chief financial officer of Enzon Inc. Zuerlis leads a panel on
Options: Legal and Accounting Perspectives" on Tuesday, March
6, at 4 p.m. at the New Jersey Technology Council’s CFO Peer Network
at the East Brunswick Hilton. Cost: $70, plus a $20 surcharge for
walk-ins. Register by fax at 856-787-9800 or online at www.njtc.org.
Joining Zueblis in a panel discussion of stock options are Charles
A. Coleman, partner, Arthur Andersen, who will present an overview
of general accounting issues related to stock options including
rules, proposed rule changes, common pitfalls and the effects of stock
options on pooling of interest transactions; Joel Horowitz
partner, Pepper Hamilton, who will discuss planning for exercising
stock options; and Rosina B. Dixon
of Corporate Directors, who will provide an overview of corporate
compensation issues related to stock options and the use of options
as an integral part of employee retention and compensation practices.
"Joel will talk about what we should worry about once we have
stock options," says Zueblis. "There are lots of tax issues,
and often the one getting the options is forced into suddenly becoming
a financial planner."
According to Zuerblis, one of the hottest issues facing companies
today is the re-pricing of stock options and Security and Exchange
Commission rules. "This can be very complicated and
says Zuerblis, and should be tackled carefully. "This will be
part of Coleman’s discussion, which will examine all the options from
`can you re-price’ to `will you be better off canceling options.’
"What’s great about events such as this one," says Zuerblis,
"is that everyone can benefit from the discussion, whether is
a start-up company or those longer in business."
There are reasons beyond demand by employees for companies to offer
stock options, says Zuerblis. Here are three:
employees to shareholders.
become eligible to exercise stock options — creates greater
that employees will remain with a company for a longer period of time.
the success of the company. Employees get a sense that their jobs
help stock prices grow.
to put stock options in their compensation packages. It’s something
employees look for."
— Michael Schumacher
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