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股東再吃虧,阿里高層也不會虧

Shawn Tully 2014年09月19日

如果今后幾年阿里巴巴在股市表現低迷,該公司高管團隊就能趁勢給自己大發股票,從而積累更巨額的財富。

聚焦阿里巴巴上市專題

· 阿里上千員工或分得人均數千萬財富
· 阿里的收購野心及其背后的風險
· 阿里巴巴能從亞馬遜和谷歌的IPO中借鑒什么
· 硅谷怎么看阿里巴巴?
· 阿里巴巴IPO:對投資者來說這是一筆“撿漏”的買賣

????中國電子商務巨擘阿里巴巴公司(Alibaba)于9月19日上市交易,如果你打算買入其股票,請記住我的忠告:該公司管理層有強大的動力為自己,而非為股東效力。

????如果今后幾年阿里巴巴在股市表現低迷,該公司高管團隊就能趁勢給自己大發股票,從而積累更巨額的財富。他們怎么都不會虧。既然如此,他們真的會為了股東的利益不辭辛勞嗎?別指望這個了。

????阿里巴巴的公司治理政策與眾不同,制定薪酬規則的權力完全掌握在管理層手中。其薪酬規則受到了股東權利捍衛者的廣泛批評,甚至激起了眾怒。阿里巴巴有一個絕對權力團體,即阿里巴巴合伙人,其中包括24名阿里巴巴集團高層,以及6名來自公司電子商務合作伙伴的高管,該公司多數董事的提名權完全掌握在這個團體手中。因此,上市以后,阿里巴巴管理層可以隨心所欲地給自己發工資。以他們目前的薪酬判斷,屆時他們的收入會令美國大型科技企業和華爾街公司的同行相形見絀,其收入之高,可能是后者連想都不敢想的。

????9月5日,阿里巴巴提交了F-1A格式招股說明書,其中詳細披露了該公司過去和將來支付薪酬的方式。從招股書第156頁“以股票結算的捐贈支出”項下的介紹可以看出,該公司創始人有權決定如何支配股東資金。據這段文字介紹,2013年10月,阿里巴巴董事會將5000萬股期權贈送給了由董事長馬云和副董事長蔡崇信指定的慈善基金。順便說一下,招股書自始至終將二人分別稱為“Jack”和“Joe”,這一做法同樣另類。

????這批期權采用立即授予方式,行權價格為每股25美元。就算阿里巴巴以每股68美元的價格,也就是發行價區間的上限開盤,上述慈善基金仍將持有價值34億美元的阿里巴巴股份,占流通股的2%。做慈善是好事,特別是如果能用股東的錢來大做慈善就更棒了。

????If you’re thinking about buying Alibaba shares once they start trading on September 19, keep this warning in mind: The management of the Chinese digital shopping colossus has a powerful incentive to work not for you, but for themselves.

????The Alibaba brass can amass even more fabulous riches if their shares perform poorly in the years ahead—by handing themselves gigantic equity grants. They can’t lose. So will they really sweat to make you a winner? Don’t count on it.

????Alibaba’s management has total authority to write their own rules on pay because of its unorthodox governance policies. Those rules have drawn widespread criticism, even outrage, from champions of shareholder rights. An all-powerful group called the Alibaba Partnership, composed of 24 managers and 6 executives of its e-commerce partners, holds exclusive authority to nominate a majority of the firm’s directors. So Alibaba’s management can pay themselves whatever they want once it’s a public company. And, judging from what they’re paying themselves now, those numbers will dwarf anything witnessed in the annals of Big Tech, Wall Street, or anything the hired help in either of those places conjured in their craziest daydreams.

????Alibaba’s approach to compensation, both past and future, is on full display in its most recent IPO prospectus, the FORM F-1A, filed on September 5. A clue to the founders’ discretion in dispensing shareholder funds comes on page 156, under the heading “Equity-settled Donation Expense.” The section states that in October 2013, the board granted 50 million stock options to charities designated by chairman Jack Ma and vice-chairman Joe Tsai—by the way, they’re referred to as “Jack” and “Joe” throughout the filing, in another unorthodox touch.

????The strike price on the shares is $25, and all the options vest immediately. Even if Alibaba shares open at $68, the high end of the pricing range, Joe and Jack’s foundations will hold $3.4 billion in Alibaba stock and own 2% of the outstanding shares. It’s great to be charitable, especially if you can be extra-charitable with your shareholders’ money.

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