Apple has completed its internal investigation into recently identified stock options irregularities, the company announced on Wednesday night.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs has apologised for the actions, while Apple's former chief financial officer, Fred Anderson, has resigned from the company's board.
"I apologise to Apple's shareholders and employees for these problems, which happened on my watch. They are completely out of character for Apple," said Jobs.
"We will now work to resolve the remaining issues as quickly as possible and to put the proper remedial measures in place to ensure that this never happens again."
Anderson, who served as Apple's chief financial officer from 1996 until 2004, informed the company that he believes it is in Apple’s best interests that he resign from the board.
The news follows a three-month investigation into Apple’s stock option practices. A special committee of outside directors, together with independent counsel and accountants, examined more than 650,000 emails and documents, and conducted interviews with more than 40 current and former employees, directors and advisors.
The investigation raised serious concerns regarding the actions of two former officers in connection with the accounting, recording and reporting of stock option grants. The company will provide all details regarding their actions to the SEC, Apple said.
Apple initiated this voluntary independent investigation after a management review discovered irregularities in past stock option grants.
The independent investigation's additional findings include:
- The investigation found no misconduct by any member of Apple's current management team
- The most recent evidence of irregularities relates to a January 2002 grant
- Stock option grants made on 15 dates between 1997 and 2002 appear to have grant dates that precede the approval of those grants
- In a few instances, Apple CEO Steve Jobs was aware that favourable grant dates had been selected, but he did not receive or otherwise benefit from these grants and was unaware of the accounting implications, the company said