updated 11:55 am EST, Fri February 9, 2007
Jobs, Pixar options
Apple CEO Steve Jobs helped negotiate an employment contract with film director John Lasseter and Pixar via a large stock-options grant carrying a 'well-timed' date, according to MarketWatch and the Wall Street Journal. The options grant held the lowest share price of the previoius year on a date more than three months prior to the signing of Lasseter's employment contract, and Jobs signed the agreement on behalf of Pixar acting as chairman and CEO. The report notes, however, that it is unclear whether Jobs played a role in selecting the date. Pixar's current owner is examining the acquired company's option-grant practices.
Apple in late June announced that an internal investigation had turned up 'irregularities' related to the issuance of certain stock option grants made between 1997 and 2001, with one of the grants in question issued to Jobs. The investigation has thus far resulted in several shareholder lawsuits against the Cupertino-based company, the launch of an official SEC investigation that is still ongoing, and a restatement of Apple's earnings resulting in an $84 million charge to rectify thousands of improperly backdated stock options grants to employees and executives.
Federal officials recently questioned Jobs in San Francisco as part of their ongoing investigation, following news that Apple's chief was given 7.5 million stock options in 2001 without the required authorization from the company's board of directors.