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Apple shareholders to vote on four proposals

post #1 of 24
Thread Starter 
Apple investors are being asked to vote on a series of proposals related to political contributions, health care, sustainability, and compensation prior to the annual shareholder's meeting, which will be held at the Apple campus on February 25, 2009.

Apple's board of directors is recommending that its investors vote against all of the proposals filed by various shareholders. The only action they do recommend is a confirmation vote approving all of the current directors.

The company's eight member board includes Bill Campbell (CEO of software maker Intuit), Millard "Mickey" Drexler (CEO of retailer J. Crew), Al Gore Jr. (chair of Alliance for Climate Protection, Generation Investment Management, and Current TV), Steve Jobs (Apple's CEO), Andrea Jung (CEO of Avon), Arthur Levinson (CEO of Genentech), Eric Schmidt (CEO of Google), and Jerome York (CEO of Harwinton Capital).

As has occurred in previous years, several shareholder proposals have been drafted by groups seeking to advance their own causes (or simply draw attention to their issues) by purchasing enough shares in Apple to register a proposal they hope other investors will approve. Shareholder proposals that are not recommended by the board of directors rarely pass because Apple's large institutional investors typically vote according to the recommendations of the board, particularly when the company is doing well under the board's management.

The first proposal was advanced by the Teamsters union, which holds 2,569 shares of the company. It asks Apple to report all of the company's direct and indirect political contributions and expenditures, twice annually. Apple's directors say the proposal is "unnecessary and unproductive" and would reveal information on its private negotiations with trade associations to its competitors.

The second shareholder proposal was advanced by the AFL-CIO union, which holds 500 shares of Apple. It asks the board to adopt heath care reform principles outlined by the Institute of Medicine. Apple's directors say the measure will not benefit the company, its employees, or its shareholders, and that health care reform is a matter for the new US President and Congress to address.

A third proposal has been made by individual with less than 100 shares in Apple, but is cosponsored by the New York City Office of the Comptroller (with over two million shares) and Green Century Equity Fund (with another nearly 8,000 shares). It asks the company to deliver a report on sustainability including all corporate strategies related to climate change, the environmental impacts of toxics and recycling programs, and all employee and product safety issues. Apple's directors say the company already reports much of this information on social and environmental issues on its website, and that additional reporting obligations are unnecessary.

The last shareholder proposal is from the AFSCME Employees Pension Plan, a public health union which holds over 21,000 shares in Apple. It request the company issue a shareholders' advisory vote on executive compensation. Apple's directors say that setting executive compensation is the job of the board itself, and that limitations imposed by shareholder voting could have an adverse impact on the company's ability to recruit and retain top talent.

In previous years, Apple's shareholder meeting has drawn theatrical performances from impassioned attendees and staged protests from groups hoping to get extra airtime by attaching their causes to Apple's status as a media darling. The tech press has also frequently written up the event with additional exaggerations that turn the shareholder's meeting into what sounds like a clown court presided over by a tyrannical, fire breathing CEO.

The meeting also gives investors an opportunity to directly pose questions to some of Apple's directors and executives, a panel that has historically been led by Steve Jobs. By the end of February, doctors expect the CEO to be on the way to recovery from a nutrition issue Jobs has battled over the last year.
post #2 of 24
Next year I'm going to propose that Apple supports college football playoffs.
post #3 of 24
Hi Dan. Didn't catch the by-line before reading but this bit rather gave it away...
"sounds like a clown court presided over by a tyrannical, fire breathing CEO". Vivid and accurate as usual.

Coming from a country with free universal health care, I particularly agree with this bit "... that health care reform is a matter for the new US President and Congress to address". I wonder if board-member Al Gore has an inside track on this issue... we could be reading the news here before it happens.
post #4 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

Next year I'm going to propose that Apple supports college football playoffs.

That and for Apple to aggressively get BO to stop giving RIM 50 million + worth of endorsements and get him a freakin' iPhone. Brilliant - rather than tout an American company let's talk endlessly about how he can't live with a Canadian product... (no offense to the Canadians, I expect the same from any one who's national economy is in the crapper).
post #5 of 24
I think all of the proposals are useless. These shareholders trying to strip Apple naked to be like a glass wall. Apple didn't get to this point with that strategy, why they think it will work?

Just because Micro$oft is a glass company doesn't mean Apple has to be.
Apple had me at scrolling
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Apple had me at scrolling
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post #6 of 24
Anybody on here GOING ?... I doubt I will... but when I got the proxy materials I actually entertained the thought of going to the meeting. Just because I can.
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
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post #7 of 24
I really wish Apple would stay out of the political arena. I know they support a liberal agenda, but come on. How about they focus on making better computers and software.
post #8 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigmc6000 View Post

That and for Apple to aggressively get BO to stop giving RIM 50 million + worth of endorsements and get him a freakin' iPhone. Brilliant - rather than tout an American company let's talk endlessly about how he can't live with a Canadian product... (no offense to the Canadians, I expect the same from any one who's national economy is in the crapper).

Why not propose that Apple actually take enterprise markets seriously for a change?
When our national security is at stake I want them to use the best tools for the job.
I would like to see Apple providing the best tools but realistically RIM has a 6 year head start on Apple.
Perhaps they will close the gap in time for his second term.
post #9 of 24
The only proposal I'd vote on is any proposal that would make it harder for sharks to manipulate the stock of a perfectly sound company like Apple to their own nefarious ends.
post #10 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by svesan03 View Post

The only proposal I'd vote on is any proposal that would make it harder for sharks to manipulate the stock of a perfectly sound company like Apple to their own nefarious ends.

Do these sharks have frikkin lasers on their heads?
post #11 of 24
what, no "as an apple stock holder..." respond?
post #12 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Springdaddy View Post

I really wish Apple would stay out of the political arena. I know they support a liberal agenda, but come on. How about they focus on making better computers and software.

They are not currently focused on making better computers and software?

Sheesh, what a gratuitous comment.

As to the political arena, welcome to the real world. All major firms have some political skin in the game. Apple is no exception.
post #13 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

Next year I'm going to propose that Apple supports college football playoffs.

hmm, may be propose to eliminate printing of useless proposal? save some tree instead?
post #14 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

Next year I'm going to propose that Apple supports college football playoffs.

agreed.
post #15 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Springdaddy View Post

I really wish Apple would stay out of the political arena. I know they support a liberal agenda, but come on. How about they focus on making better computers and software.

I whole heartedly agree that Political Contributions should not be made by corporations to promote some corporate executives agenda. If a contribution is necessary to lobby internet censure or other government infringements to technical rights then spend away. But don't spend my dividends which they haven't given me in years on some personal liberal agenda. If the executives have a strong feeling about some political issue then take up a collection from your bloated salaries or sell off some of your stock options and donate as a group. If political spending becomes a large line item on the balance sheet then a detailed accounting should be made to those of us who faithfully invest in the company. It's like your home budget if one line item gets out of control you need to know exactly where all those dollars were spent.

Another item that should be considered by ALL corporations is executive compensation. Right now it's a big boys (girls) network where one board member votes executives a raise and those executive on that board members corporate board in turn votes a reciprocal raise. All executives should have their wages capped as a percent of the lowest paid employee (off shore workers included) maybe to the tune of 100 times then a company who has the lowest paid employee making only $6/Hr then the top executive would only receive $1.2M/Yr in actual compensation then stock options would be issued to raise that rate but those options cannot be cashed in for 5 years thereby encouraging management to advance the corporate value. The current financial crisis has been fueled by executive greed and allowed by the Federal Gov't who handed out our Tax dollars to businesses to give executive bonuses (Aren't they they ones who put them in the crapper in the first place)
KennDDS
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KennDDS
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post #16 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Springdaddy View Post

I really wish Apple would stay out of the political arena. I know they support a liberal agenda, but come on. How about they focus on making better computers and software.

This is a really gratuitous comment and completely unsupported.

I know of no case in the last few years wherein Apple "entered the political areana" with the exception of supporting opposition to Prop 8. As they stated when they did it, the issue was Human Rights not politics per se, and was done expressly at the behest of their own employees, because the implementation of the law if passed would strongly affect their internal benefit structure.

People are very quick to throw out this idea that Apple is some kind of lefty company that has political irons in fires that have nothing to do with it when it simply isn't true.

Apple is actually a terrifically focussed company with very few political leanings. It's CEO and executives don't show up at political rallies or endorse candidates and if they donate money, it isn't reported at al it's a private affair. Microsoft on the other hand, and it's executives are far more political than Apple and donate far more money to political causes. They "grease the wheels" in Washington as much as Exxon does almost and support particular candidates and causes.
In Windows, a window can be a document, it can be an application, or it can be a window that contains other documents or applications. Theres just no consistency. Its just a big grab bag of monkey...
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In Windows, a window can be a document, it can be an application, or it can be a window that contains other documents or applications. Theres just no consistency. Its just a big grab bag of monkey...
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post #17 of 24
I want to propose that Apple make iMovie compatible with MPEG2 codecs so I can edit footage from (medical) surgery recording systems. Would such a proposal fly????
This has been a huge source of frustration. Anyone know how to initiate the paperwork? What is the min number of shares?
Thanks
applestockholder
post #18 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by applestockholder View Post

I want to propose that Apple make iMovie compatible with MPEG2 codecs so I can edit footage from (medical) surgery recording systems. Would such a proposal fly????...

Isn't it already?? ... If it leverages QT, I would think that simply purchasing the Mpeg-2 plugin for QT would enable it within iMovie as well.

I don't know that it does work with iMovie, but I know the plug-in enables Mpeg-2 handling within QTPro.
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
From out there on the moon, international politics look so petty. You want to grab a politician by the scruff of the neck and drag him a quarter of a million miles out and say, "Look at that!" -...
Reply
post #19 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingOfSomewhereHot View Post

Isn't it already?? ... If it leverages QT, I would think that simply purchasing the Mpeg-2 plugin for QT would enable it within iMovie as well.

I don't know that it does work with iMovie, but I know the plug-in enables Mpeg-2 handling within QTPro.

Unfortunately, it does not. With the Mpeg2 codec for QT in place, I can get trick iMovie to import the MPEG2 movies, but it will not edit them. In QTpro I can also not edit the version of MPEG2 I get from the recorder, the editing options are grayed out
The only program that I have found to work decently is SimpleMovieX. But it is nothing like iMovie, no insult intended, ti tis great and inexpensive. I use iMovie for things for which I have control over the file type. I would like to use it for my surgical videos as well.
And BTW, there are many surgeons that like to edit video, and can't use iMovie...
post #20 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by applestockholder View Post

Unfortunately, it does not. With the Mpeg2 codec for QT in place, I can get trick iMovie to import the MPEG2 movies, but it will not edit them. In QTpro I can also not edit the version of MPEG2 I get from the recorder, the editing options are grayed out
The only program that I have found to work decently is SimpleMovieX. But it is nothing like iMovie, no insult intended, ti tis great and inexpensive. I use iMovie for things for which I have control over the file type. I would like to use it for my surgical videos as well.
And BTW, there are many surgeons that like to edit video, and can't use iMovie...

You could always use a program like ffmpegX to convert the mpeg2 into an mp4 format then load it into iMovie. It is a little cumbersome, but I'm sure that it could be automated somehow.
post #21 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by Springdaddy View Post

I really wish Apple would stay out of the political arena. I know they support a liberal agenda, but come on. How about they focus on making better computers and software.

that's part of the issue mentioned by the article. these people buy up stock to try to trick Apple into supporting a particular political agenda. but the board isn't going to be played like that. as the article points out, rarely are such proposals approved and pushed any further.

A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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A non tech's thoughts on Apple stuff 

(She's family so I'm a little biased)

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post #22 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by applestockholder View Post

Unfortunately, it does not. With the Mpeg2 codec for QT in place, I can get trick iMovie to import the MPEG2 movies, but it will not edit them. In QTpro I can also not edit the version of MPEG2 I get from the recorder, the editing options are grayed out
The only program that I have found to work decently is SimpleMovieX. But it is nothing like iMovie, no insult intended, ti tis great and inexpensive. I use iMovie for things for which I have control over the file type. I would like to use it for my surgical videos as well.
And BTW, there are many surgeons that like to edit video, and can't use iMovie...

Just use MPEG Streamclip. A once off conversion of MPEG2 to a codec of your choice (say "Animation") then Boom! you're in business. http://www.squared5.com/
post #23 of 24
I have seen my fair share of proxy statements and shareholder proposals over the decades. Not once have I ever seen a board of directors recommend a shareholder proposal. And I have never heard of a shareholder proposal actually being passed at a shareholder meeting. Almost no one ever returns their proxy statement and therefore authorizes the board to vote their shares as they see fit. Second, most of these shareholder proposals are put forth by activists who buy some shares so they can attend the meetings and attempt to stir up things. The big shareholders who hold large percentages of stock don't really need a shareholder proposal to get their wishes across. They have other, more effective ways to get the board's attention.

It's all a big dog and pony show, with clowns no less.
post #24 of 24
Quote:
Originally Posted by iVlad View Post

I think all of the proposals are useless. These shareholders trying to strip Apple naked to be like a glass wall. Apple didn't get to this point with that strategy, why they think it will work?

Just because Micro$oft is a glass company doesn't mean Apple has to be.

Agreed. The political thing is just weird. What Steve Jobs votes politically is of no concern to me as long as the computers he makes don't try to push his political agenda on me. If they don't want to hold shares in a company that supports one party or another they can just move their shares to a company that discloses everything.
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