Apple retail chief nets nearly $113 million in options move

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Apple senior vice president of retail operations, Ron Johnson, recently exercised options for and then sold 700,000 shares of common stock worth approximately $130 million.

According to regulatory filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Johnson exercised the 700,000 options at $23.72 apiece on Friday, October 26 — the same day Apple launched its Mac OS X Leopard operating system — and then turned around sold the shares on the open market from $185 to $185.21 apiece.

Over 606,000 of the shares, which the retail chief acquired under Apple's 1997 Employee Stock Option Plan, were sold at exactly $185. The remaining shares were sold at various intervals with Apple's share price ranging from $185.01 to $185.21.

Johnson's estimated net profit on the options is approximately $113 million before taxes.

Interestingly, Friday was the second time the Apple retail chief has exercised 700,000 or more options in a single day. Back in August of 2005, when Apple stock was trading in the $45 range, he cashed in on 750,000 shares for a profit of $22.6 million.

Johnson also exercised 300,000 options back in November of 2004 for a profit just shy of $10 million.