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Employee Stock Ownership Plan or ESOP
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Employee Stock Ownership Plan Or ESOP

Constitution of Trust
Formation of ESOP Plan
Indentification & Appraisal of Eligible Employees
Valuation of Company
Creation of ESOP pool
Documentation & Granting of ESOPs
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    What are ESOP?

    Employee Stock Ownership Plan or popularly known as ESOP, is a qualified and well defined plan meant to benefit both employee and employer, in which a employee primarily invest in the stock of the sponsoring company.

    The primary aim of the ESOP is used to maintain the focus of the employees on the company’s performance and to contribute more and more in share price appreciation. By giving employees an interest in company’s performance, a company believes it would encourage participants to give their best for the company and its shareholders , as they themselves are shareholders now.

    How does ESOP works?

    A company is which employee is working gives an opportunity to that employee to buy a pre-fixed number of shares of the company at a price which is lower than the market value and vest it after certain number of years, known as option period.

    What does ‘Grant’ and ‘Vesting’ of the ESOP option mean?

    Grant of the ESOP refers to the commitment that an employer makes by informing the employee of the eligibility of the available options.  Vesting of the ESOP means giving  right to the employee to own share over the period of the time.

    Document Required

    Documents Requirement For ESOP Allotment

    Advance notice of the Board Meeting to the stock exchange where security is listed (only in case of listed companies)
    Minutes of Board meeting
    Special Resolution approving ESOP along with explanatory statement
    Minutes of General Meeting
    Reports of the Board
    Registration of Employee Stock Option Plan

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      Tax Benefit under Section 12A – to NGO

      Although each company has its own purpose of issuing ESOP , certain employees are not permitted under the scheme:

      Promotor or the one who belongs to the promoter group
      Any director, either himself or any of his relatives , if he holds more than 10% of the outstanding equity shares under his name.

      What are the various option plan available for the Employees?

      Although they are many plans available , few prominent ones are :

      ESOS ( Employee Stock Option Scheme)
      ISO(Incentive Stock Option)
      ESP( Employee Stock Purchase)
      SARs(Stock Appreciation Rights)
      RSA( Restricted Stock Award)
      RSU( Restricted Stock Unit)

      The selection criteria would depend entirely upon what is object with which ESOP plan is being implemented . For an instance, if the objective of the company is to reduce attrition rate, they would keep vesting period longer than normal.

      What are the legal compliance to be taken care for implementing of ESOP scheme?

      Even the smallest thing in a company has some laws to be followed, same goes for ESOP scheme. The legal compliance to be taken care of while implementation of ESOP scheme are:

      SEBI( ESOP Guidelines)
      Companies Act
      Income Tax Act
      Accounting Guidelines(ICAI,IFRS,US GAAP)


      Alternately Call our Legal Expert Now For Free Consultation at 09599653306

      Frequently Asked Questions on Employee Stock Ownership Plan or ESOP
      Are The Options Valid For Lifetime Or For A Certain Period?

      No Options are not for lifetime. Either when an employee is terminated or on the expiry of the exercise period, Option lapse depending on the conditions mentioned by the employer. Once an Option is lapsed , it cannot be converted to the shares.

      Are ESOP Transferable To Any Third Party By The Employee?

      ESOPs are not shares in itself. Therefore, they cannot be transferred but once they are converted to the shares, an employee can freely transfer them subjected to terms and conditions stated by the company.

      What Would Happen If The Holder Of ESOP Dies Before Vesting Of The Options?

      In case the holder of ESOP dies before lapsing of the option, they vest in his/her legal heir or nominee.

      Compare your Options
      ESOP Sweat Equity Phantom Shares
      Mode of Consideration Cash Cash/ Cash+IPR’s/Fully non cash Cash/Equivalent number of shares
      Lock In Period Not Specified 3 years Not Specified
      Pricing Guidelines Not Defined Defined Not Defined
      Separate Register Requirement Not to be maintained To be maintained Not to be maintained
      Restriction on percentage issued of by Unlisted Companies No such restriction Not more than 15% without approval No such restriction
      Eligibility Criteria Cannot be issued to promoter or those belonging to that group Can be issued to Employees, Directors and Officers of the company. Employees, Directors, Third Party Vendors
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