C. Wendell Bergere, former GC of Altera Corp., and Altera's former CEO Rodney Smith backdated stock option grants to themselves and other executives between 1996 and 2000, according to results of a company inquiry announced Oct. 16.
In announcing that it had completed its investigation, Altera said it will restate earnings by a total of $47.6 million to correct errors in accounting for stock option grants.
In a release, the San Jose, Calif.-based chip maker said the investigation found almost all of the errors occurred during an annual granting of stock options to senior management that occurred each December.
"Instead of granting options on the date intended by the compensation committee, our former CEO and former General Counsel chose as the grant date the date with the lowest closing price in December," the release said. "Both the former CEO and the former GC received some of these in-the-money options in December of each year from 1996 to 2000." The release also said the GC altered minutes of the compensation committee and board meetings to cover up the change in grant date.
The release did not name the former CEO and GC, but Bergere was general counsel from 1995 to 2001 and Smith was CEO from 1983 to 2000.