| HBS Case Collection
(Revised October 2002)
Akamai's Underwater Options (A)
Akamai's stock price declines dramatically with the NASDAQ in 2000, causing virtually all employee options to go underwater. Ownership and retention incentives are largely destroyed, and employee morale falls sharply. Management weighs the pros and cons of various alternative "solutions" to this problem (including repricing, issuing a new supplemental grant, canceling the underwater options and issuing a delayed regrant, and making a tender offer to exchange underwater options for fewer shares of restricted stock).
Keywords: Motivation and Incentives;
Compensation and Benefits;