REDMOND, Wash., Jan. 16, 2003 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that its Board of Directors declared an annual dividend and approved a two-for-one split on Microsoft common stock. The annual dividend of $0.16 per share pre-split ($0.08 post-split) is payable March 7, 2003, to shareholders of record at the close of business on Feb. 21, 2003. As a result of the stock split, shareholders will receive one additional common share for every share held on the record date of Jan. 27, 2003.
"Declaring a dividend demonstrates the board's confidence in the company's long-term growth opportunities and financial strength. We are especially pleased to be able to return profits to our shareholders, while maintaining our significant investment in research and development and satisfying our long-term capital requirements," said John Connors, chief financial officer at Microsoft.
Upon completion of the split, the number of common shares outstanding will be approximately 10.8 billion. The additional shares will be mailed or delivered on or about Feb. 14, 2003, by the company's transfer agent, Mellon Investor Services. This is the ninth time Microsoft's common stock has split since the company's initial public offering on March 13, 1986.
"We believe that the split, combined with an annual dividend, will make Microsoft stock even more attractive to a broader range of investors. We see enormous potential for growth in the software and technology sector, and remain committed to attracting investors who share this enthusiasm and take a long-term view of the company's growth opportunities," Connors said.
In connection with the dividend, the company is introducing a Direct Stock Purchase Program and a Dividend Reinvestment Program, offering both new investors and current stockholders the option of receiving Microsoft's annual dividend in cash or having it automatically reinvested. This program is administered by Mellon Investor Services, not by Microsoft. More information about the program and enrollment forms are available by calling Mellon Investor Services at (800) 285-7772 (toll-free), contacting Mellon by e-mail at email@example.com , or visiting Mellon's Web site at http://www.melloninvestor.com .
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT" ) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software -- any time, any place and on any device.
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