Cash-rich Apple to pay dividend, buy back shares
NEW YORK - Agence France-Presse
AFP photoApple announced Monday it will spend part of its cash hoard to pay its first dividend to shareholders and buy back $10 billion in shares.
Apple said it would pay a quarterly dividend of $2.65 per share from its huge cash balance, estimated to be at least $97 billion from sales of its hugely successful gadgets like the iPad and iPhone.
The dividend payment would start with the company's 2012 fiscal fourth quarter, which begins on July 1, Apple said in a statement.
The $10 billion share buyback will begin in fiscal 2013, which begins on September 30.
Apple said it expected the repurchase program to be executed over three years in an effort to neutralize the impact of dilution from future employee equity grants and employee stock purchase programs.
"We have used some of our cash to make great investments in our business through increased research and development, acquisitions, new retail store openings, strategic prepayments and capital expenditures in our supply chain, and building out our infrastructure. You'll see more of all of these in the future," Tim Cook, Apple's chief executive, said in the statement.
"Even with these investments, we can maintain a war chest for strategic opportunities and have plenty of cash to run our business."