This excerpt taken from the PBI DEF 14A filed Apr 3, 2007.
Proposal 3: Approval of the Pitney Bowes Inc. 2007 Stock Plan
The board of directors recommends that stockholders approve the Pitney Bowes Inc. 2007 Stock Plan (which we refer to as the 2007 Plan). The 2007 Plan would govern grants of stock-based awards to employees. It is intended that upon approval by stockholders at the annual meeting the 2007 Plan would replace the Pitney Bowes 2002 Stock Plan (which we refer to as the 2002 Plan) and no additional grants will be made under the 2002 Plan. A maximum of 15,000,000 shares (subject to adjustment as described below) of Pitney Bowes common stock will be reserved for issuance under the 2007 Plan.
Based upon the recommendation of the Executive Compensation Committee, the board of directors has unanimously approved the 2007 Plan effective May 1, 2007, subject to stockholder approval at the annual meeting. The 2007 Plan is designed to support the companys long-term business objectives in a manner consistent with our executive compensation philosophy. The board believes that by allowing the company to continue to offer its employees long-term, equity-based incentive compensation through the 2007 Plan, Pitney Bowes will promote the following key objectives:
All employees of Pitney Bowes and its affiliates are eligible to receive awards under the 2007 Plan, but awards are generally limited to approximately 3,000 management and executive-level employees. The relative mix of equity compensation to total compensation increases in relation to a participants role in influencing stockholder value.
As with the companys prior equity plans, the 2007 Plan is an omnibus stock plan that provides for a variety of equity award vehicles to maintain flexibility. The 2007 Plan will permit the grant of stock options, stock appreciation rights or SARs, restricted stock awards, restricted stock units, stock awards and other stock-based awards. Participants at the vice president level and above are generally granted stock options and participants at the manager and director levels are generally granted restricted stock units. In unique circumstances where needed for attracting, retaining and motivating executive talent, restricted stock may be awarded. The 2007 Plan is flexible and will allow us to change equity grant practices from time to time.
A maximum of 15,000,000 shares (subject to adjustment as described below) will be available for grants of all equity awards under the 2007 Plan. The board believes that this number represents a reasonable amount of potential equity dilution and provides a powerful incentive for employees to increase the value of the company for all stockholders. As of February 28, 2007, there were 9,133,536 shares available for issuance under the 2002 Plan. The additional 5,866,464 shares available under the 2007 Plan would represent approximately 2.42% of fully diluted common shares outstanding as of December 31, 2006.1 Equity dilution from all shares available would represent approximately 6.18% . Including the new shares, the potential equity overhang from all stock incentives granted and available to employees would be approximately 14.08% .2 Included in the equity overhang calculation are options with exercise prices greater than the current share price.
As of February 28, 2007, there were 20,664,148 shares outstanding under the 2002 plan (of which 568,450 are restricted stock units and shares of restricted stock). As of February 28, 2007, the weighted average exercise price of outstanding stock options was $42.77 and the weighted average remaining term was 5 years.
In the past two years, the company has sought to strike a balance between various forms of stock-based compensation and to move away from stock options as the primary long-term incentive vehicle. In 2006, the company granted restricted stock unit awards instead of stock options for participants in the United States at the manager and director levels. In 2007, the company has substituted stock options with restricted stock unit awards for participants at those levels outside the United States.
The board of directors believes that it is in the best interests of the company and its stockholders to continue to provide for an equity incentive plan under which stock-based compensation awards made to the companys executive officers can qualify for deductibility by the company for federal income tax purposes. Accordingly, the 2007 Plan has been structured so that awards under it can satisfy the requirements for performance-based compensation under Section 162(m) of the Internal Revenue Code. In general, under Section 162(m), in order for the company to be able to deduct compensation in excess of $1 million paid in any one year to the companys named executive officers, such compensation must qualify as performance-based. One of the requirements of performance-based compensation for purposes of Section 162(m) is that the material terms of the performance goals under which compensation may be paid be disclosed to and approved by the companys stockholders. For purposes of Section 162(m) the material terms include (i) the employees eligible to receive compensation, (ii) a description of the business criteria on which the performance goal is based and (iii) the maximum amount of compensation that can be paid to an employee under the performance goal. With respect to awards of restricted stock, stock units, and other stock awards under the 2007 Plan, each of these aspects is discussed below, and stockholder approval of the 2007 Plan will be deemed to constitute approval of each of these aspects of the 2007 Plan for purposes of the
(1) On December 31, 2006, there were 242,530,014 diluted common shares of Pitney Bowes stock outstanding.
(2) Equity overhang is calculated as all shares issued and outstanding under plans and shares available for grant under plans divided by (a) common shares outstanding at fiscal year end + (b) potential shares from the conversion of preferred stock + (c) shares in the numerator. Equity overhang using common shares outstanding as of the record date was 16.46% .
approval requirements of Section 162(m). The 2007 Plan does not permit the repricing of options or stock appreciation rights without the approval of stockholders or the granting of discounted options, stock appreciation rights or stock options with reload features, and does not contain an evergreen provision to automatically increase the number of shares issuable under the 2007 Plan.
The following is a summary of the 2007 Plan. The full text of the 2007 Plan is attached as Annex I to this proxy statement, and the following summary is qualified in its entirety by reference to this Annex.