HOT Mints Millionaire: Stella Handler

Company announces stock options plan for its incoming chairwoman valued at NIS 32.8 million.

Amir Teig
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Amir Teig

Stella Handler is joining the club of millionaire hirelings. HOT Telecommunications Systems announced a stock options plan for its incoming chairwoman valued at NIS 32.8 million.

The plan was approved Tuesday night by the company's board of directors and its audit committee.

Stella HandlerCredit: Eyal Toueg

The strike price for the options was set at NIS 65. Shares were trading at NIS 63.60 when the package was decided, and its overall value was determined by an external assessor using the binomial option pricing model.

HOT said the plan involves a staggered vesting schedule: 25% of the options can be exercised on each of the first four anniversaries of Handler's employment with HOT, starting the beginning of May next year. Each group of options will expire three years after its vesting date.

The options plan is the largest ever awarded by HOT, which typically compensates its management more modestly than its competitors, particularly Bezeq. Recent change in ownership apparently spearheaded the breakthrough.

Handler's monthly paycheck from the cable TV company was set at an inflation-linked NIS 167,000. A formula based on improvement to HOT's EBITDA will determine her annual bonus, but this will not exceed her annual salary. She will, of course, be entitled to the company's full range of social benefits.

Let's not forget the company car. She's getting an Audi 6 or Lexus 450, or her choice of any other vehicle of that class. But any fines are on her.