Equals amends executive options to at-the-money strike price
It looks like another mini shareholder revolt has taken place in the FX space. And, was done quietly and successfully.
LSE-AIM listed e-banking and international payments firm Equals Group plc (formerly FairFX) announced this morning that it is making (again) some changes to its Long Term Incentive Plan for senior management.
Equals stated that “in further consultation with shareholders” the Plan will be changed such that the options recently granted to CEO Ian Strafford-Taylor and CFO Richard Cooper under the Plan will no longer have a zero strike price. Instead, the options will be priced “at the money” based on the company’s current share price, and will thus carry an exercise price of 29p per share.
As we reported back on August 20, Equals repriced its executive team options to zero after Equals stock (LON:EQLS) declined by about 75% in the past year, making the original stock option exercise price target (£1.01 per share) unrealistic. However, to make good on their repriced options, senior management still needed to bring the share price up by about 43% from where it sits now, to above £0.40.
It seems as if that plan hit some serious headwinds with some of Equals’ leading institutional shareholders, and as such the board again changed the plan, and re-repriced the options as we note above.