And at the moment, it’s kind of an experimental project, reports Footnoted.org, using a sample of only 20 Google employees and giving them 5 options a piece to trade with a limited set of bankers who are authorized to buy the options. Footnoted’s question about all this: Is rolling out a program to 20 people each exercising 5 options a good way to test a program that’s likely to be significantly bigger?
Stock-wise, the test run will affect Google to the tune of a $90 million charge in the current quarter, the company states in the filing, and $160 million over the life of the program.
Thanks to Paul Kedrosky at Infectious Greed for pointing this out; for his part, Kedrosky is sticking with his two concerns about Google’s program, namely that it is not transparent, because bankers authorized to buy the options may now get some inside dope about Google’s state of business, and letting employees sell options doesn’t seem like it’s necessarily aligned with shareholder interest.
Google’s Option Plan: Good For Employees, Good For Shareholders, Grundfest Says, Dec. 13, 2006; Google Creates Program To Let Employees Sell Their Vested Stock Options, Dec. 12, 2006.
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