Rogers’ Board of Directors has approved an increase in the annual dividend from C$0.16 to C$0.50 per Class A Voting and Class B Non-Voting share effective immediately. The new quarterly dividend will be C$0.125 per each outstanding Class B Non-Voting share and Class A Voting share. Such quarterly dividends are only payable as and when declared by Rogers’ Board and there is no entitlement to any dividend prior thereto.
The Board declared the first quarterly dividend at the increased rate of C$0.125 per share (up from the previous quarterly rate of C$0.04 per share) for each of the outstanding Class B Non-Voting shares and Class A Voting shares. This quarterly dividend will be paid on July 3, 2007 to shareholders of record on June 14, 2007.
Rogers’ Board of Directors has approved an amendment to RCI’s stock option plans introducing a cash settlement feature for the exercise of employee stock options.
Permitting option holders to elect the settlement of the in-the-money value of stock options for cash reduces the need to issue shares from treasury. At the same time, the amount of the cash payments made by Rogers are deductible for income tax purposes and are expected to result in significant future income tax savings for the company.
The cash settlement feature provides Rogers with the opportunity to utilize a portion of its free cash flow to essentially repurchase stock that otherwise would be issued and tax efficiently mitigate shareholder dilution that would otherwise occur upon exercise of these options.
Based upon the closing price of the Class B Non-voting shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange on May 24, 2007 and the then outstanding options, the introduction of the cash settlement feature for the exercise of employee stock options is expected to result in a one-time non-cash expense for accounting purposes of approximately $380 million. This charge, which could vary depending on both the trading price of the Class B Non-voting shares and the number of options outstanding on the May 28, 2007 effective date of the adoption of the cash settlement feature, is expected to be recorded in the second quarter of 2007. A future income tax benefit of approximately $140 million related to the one-time non-cash expense is also expected to be recorded in the second quarter of 2007.
As at May 25, 2007, Rogers had approximately 17.9 million options outstanding, of which approximately 12.5 million were vested. [May 29, 2007]
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