Intel grabbed headlines today announcing its first-ever option exchange program that helped balance its implementation of an across-the-board salary freeze. But joining Intel today in announcing a plan to reprice employee stock option plan was NetApp, the Sunnyvale provider of network storage appliances, which is asking its shareholders to vote on a plan to reprice options with exercise prices of $22 or higher.
In its argument in favor of the measure, NetApp’s board said that 95% of its employees hold stock options which are underwater as the end of February, making them unable to “provide the retention or incentive value” they were designed for.
NetApp and Intel join more than 100 other companies, including Silicon Valley names such as Advanced Micro Devices and eBay, in asking shareholders to allow for the repricing of existing options, according to Bloomberg. With a growing number of companies enacting exchanges it becomes easier to believe NetApp’s claim that “the market for key employees remains extremely competitive, notwithstanding the current economy.”