The board of directors at NIKE Inc has approved a new four-year, US$8 billion program to repurchase shares of NIKE’s Class B common stock. The company’s current US$5 billion share repurchase program will be completed during the second quarter of fiscal 2013, and the new program will commence upon the completion of the current program.
By continuing to repurchase its own shares, Nike draws on cash reserves but continues to reduce the number of shares held by the public. This should benefit existing shareholders; as even if profits do not grow, the reduction in publicly available shares would increase the earnings per share.
“We believe repurchasing our shares is a prudent use of our cash and are pleased to extend NIKE’s track record of returning value to shareholders through sustained share repurchases,” said Mark Parker, NIKE’s President and CEO.
“Over the past 10 years, NIKE Inc has returned US$10 billion to shareholders through the repurchase of more than 167 million shares. This new share repurchase program demonstrates our continued confidence in NIKE’s strategy to generate long-term profitable growth and strong cash flow, and reflects our commitment to delivering value to our shareholders.”
Repurchases under NIKE’s new program will be made in open market or privately negotiated transactions in compliance with Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Rule 10b-18, ‘subject to market conditions, applicable legal requirements, and other relevant factors.’
This share repurchase plan does not obligate NIKE Inc to acquire any particular amount of common stock, and it may be suspended at any time at the company’s discretion. NIKE Inc had approximately 361 million shares of Class B Common Stock outstanding as of 31 August 2012.