Revised form of grant agreement for non-qualified stock options granted under the registrant's Incentive Plan

EX-10.8 2 a10-k2019exhibit108bluebir.htm EXHIBIT 10.8 Exhibit

Exhibit 10.8
This Stock Option Grant Agreement (the “Grant Agreement”) is made and entered into effective on the Date of Grant set forth in Exhibit A (the “Date of Grant”) by and between Blue Bird Corporation, a Delaware corporation (the “Company”), and the individual named in Exhibit A hereto (the “Optionee”).

WHEREAS, the Company desires to provide the Optionee an incentive to participate in the success and growth of the Company through the opportunity to earn a proprietary interest in the Company; and

WHEREAS, to give effect to the foregoing intention, the Company desires to grant the Optionee an option pursuant to the Blue Bird Corporation 2015 Omnibus Equity Incentive Plan (the “Plan”) to acquire the Company’s common stock, par value $.0001 per share (the “Common Stock”);

NOW, THEREFORE, in consideration of the mutual covenants hereinafter set forth and for good and valuable consideration, the parties hereto agree as follows:

1.    Grant. The Company hereby grants the Optionee a Nonqualified Stock Option (the “Option”) to purchase up to the number of shares of Common Stock (the “Shares”) set forth in Exhibit A hereto at the exercise price per Share (the “Exercise Price”) set forth in Exhibit A, subject to the terms and conditions set forth herein and the provisions of the Plan, the terms of which are incorporated herein by reference. Capitalized terms used but not otherwise defined in this Grant Agreement shall have the meanings as set forth in the Plan.

2.    Vesting. Except as otherwise provided in this Agreement or in Exhibit A (which shall supersede this Section 2 in the event of any inconsistency between this Section 2 and Exhibit A), the Options shall vest in accordance with the following vesting schedule subject to achievement of at least a partial payment of the Management Performance Bonus Plan for the prior fiscal year:
The following percentage
of the Options:
Shall vest on the following date; provided that the Awardee is in the Service of the Company or any of its Subsidiaries on such date:
December 11, 2019
December 11, 2020
December 11, 2021

Any Option not vested due to a failure to achieve the prior fiscal year’s Management Performance Bonus Plan shall be forfeited. Further, each tranche of Options is subject to downward adjustments consistent with each respective fiscal year’s actual percentage payout based solely on the financial metrics of the Management Performance bonus award. For example, if the Company achieves a 50% payout of the fiscal year 2019 Management Performance Bonus Plan, then only half of the 33.3% of the Option award shall vest on December 11, 2019. If the Company fails to achieve any payout of the fiscal year 2019 Management Performance Bonus Plan, then 33.3% of the Option shall be deemed forfeited. The performance objectives of each fiscal year’s Management Performance Plan shall be set by the Company’s Compensation Committee at its sole discretion and may vary year to year.

Notwithstanding anything to the contrary, no portion of the Option shall vest and become exercisable after the date on which the Optionee’s Service with the Company and its Subsidiaries terminates. The vesting of all unvested shares of Common Stock subject to the Option will automatically be accelerated in connection with a “Change in Control”, as defined in the Plan.

3.    Exercise Period Following Termination of Service. This Option shall terminate and be canceled, to the extent not exercised, on the ninetieth (90th) day after the Optionee’s Service with the Company and its Subsidiaries terminates, except that if such termination of Service with the Company and its Subsidiaries is due to the death or Disability of the Optionee, this Option shall terminate and be canceled on the one-year anniversary of the date of such termination of Service. Notwithstanding the foregoing, in the event that the Optionee’s Service with the Company and its Subsidiaries is terminated for “Cause” (as defined below), then the Option (whether or not then exercisable to any extent) shall immediately terminate on the date of such termination of Service and shall not be exercisable for any period following such date. Notwithstanding anything contained herein to the

contrary, in no event may this Option be exercised later than the Expiration Date set forth in Exhibit A and in no event shall this Option be exercised for more Shares than the Shares which otherwise have become exercisable as of the date of termination of Service.

For purposes of the foregoing, the Optionee’s Service with the Company and its Subsidiaries shall be deemed to be terminated for “Cause” if such termination is due to the Optionee’s (i) conviction of, or the entry of a plea of guilty or no contest to, a felony or any other crime that causes the Company or its Affiliates public disgrace or disrepute, or that materially and adversely affects the Company’s or its Affiliates’ operations or financial performance or the relationship the Company has with its customers or suppliers, (ii) gross negligence or willful misconduct with respect to the Company or any of its Affiliates, including, without limitation fraud, embezzlement, theft or proven dishonesty in the course of Optionee’s employment; (iii) refusal to perform any lawful, material obligation or fulfill any duty (other than any duty or obligation of the type described in clause (v) below) to the Company or its Affiliates (other than due to a Disability), which refusal, if curable, is not cured within 10 days after delivery of written notice thereof; (iv) material breach of any agreement with or duty owed to the Company or any of its Affiliates, which breach, if curable, is not cured within 10 days after the delivery of written notice thereof; or (v) breach of any obligation or duty to the Company or any of its Affiliates (whether arising by statute, common law or agreement) relating to confidentiality, noncompetition, nonsolicitation or proprietary rights. Notwithstanding the foregoing, if Optionee and the Company (or any of its Subsidiaries) have entered into an employment agreement, consulting agreement or other similar agreement that specifically defines “cause,” then “Cause” shall have the meaning defined in that employment agreement, consulting agreement or other agreement.

4.    Method of Exercise. This Option is exercisable by delivery to the Company of an exercise notice (the “Exercise Notice”) in a form satisfactory to the Committee or by such other form or means as the Committee may permit or require. Any Exercise Notice shall state or provide the number of Shares with respect to which the Option is being exercised (the “Exercised Shares”), and include such other representations and agreements as may be required by the Company pursuant to the provisions of the Plan. The Exercise Notice shall be accompanied by payment of the aggregate Exercise Price for the Exercised Shares (i) in cash; (ii) by check; or (iii) in such other manner as is acceptable to the Committee, provided that such form of consideration is permitted by the Plan and by applicable law. Upon exercise of the Option by the Optionee and prior to the delivery of such Exercised Shares, the Company shall have the right to require the Optionee to satisfy applicable Federal and state tax income tax withholding requirements and the Optionee’s share of applicable employment withholding taxes in a method satisfactory to the Company. Notwithstanding the foregoing, no Exercised Shares shall be issued unless such exercise and issuance complies with the requirements relating to the administration of stock option plans and other applicable equity plans under U.S. state corporate laws, U.S. federal and state securities laws, the Code, any stock exchange or quotation system on which the Common Stock is listed or quoted, and the applicable laws of any foreign country or jurisdiction where stock grants or other applicable equity grants are made under the Plan; assuming such compliance, for income tax purposes the Exercised Shares shall be considered transferred to the Optionee on the date the Option is exercised with respect to such Shares.

5.    Covenants Agreement. This Option shall be subject to forfeiture at the election of the Company in the event that the Optionee breaches any agreement between the Optionee and the Company with respect to noncompetition, nonsolicitation, assignment of inventions and contributions and/or nondisclosure obligations of the Optionee.

6.    Taxes. By executing this Grant Agreement, Optionee acknowledges and agrees that Optionee is solely responsible for the satisfaction of any applicable taxes that may be imposed on Optionee that arise as a result of the grant, vesting or exercise of the Option, including without limitation any taxes arising under Section 409A of the Code (regarding deferred compensation) or Section 4999 of the Code (regarding golden parachute excise taxes), and that neither the Company nor the Committee shall have any obligation whatsoever to pay such taxes or otherwise indemnify or hold Optionee harmless from any or all of such taxes.

7.    Non-Transferability of Option. This Option may not be transferred in any manner otherwise than by will or by the laws of descent or distribution and may be exercised during the lifetime of the Optionee only by the Optionee. The terms of the Plan and this Grant Agreement shall be binding upon the executors, administrators, heirs, successors and assigns of the Optionee.

8.    Securities Matters. All Shares and Exercised Shares shall be subject to the restrictions on sale, encumbrance and other disposition provided by Federal or state law. The Company shall not be obligated to sell or issue any Shares or Exercised Shares pursuant to this Grant Agreement unless, on the date of sale and issuance thereof, such Shares are either registered under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Securities Act”), and all applicable state securities laws, or are exempt from registration thereunder. Regardless of whether the offering and sale of Shares under the Plan have been registered under the Securities Act, or have been registered or qualified under the securities laws of any state, the Company at its discretion may impose restrictions upon the sale, pledge or other transfer of such Shares (including the placement of appropriate legends on stock certificates or the imposition of stop-transfer instructions) if, in the judgment of the Company, such restrictions are necessary in order to achieve compliance with the Securities Act or the securities laws of any state or any other law.

9.    Investment Purpose. The Optionee represents and warrants that unless the Shares are registered under the Securities Act, any and all Shares acquired by the Optionee under this Grant Agreement will be acquired for investment for the Optionee’s own account and not with a view to, for resale in connection with, or with an intent of participating directly or indirectly in, any distribution of such Shares within the meaning of the Securities Act. The Optionee agrees not to sell, transfer or otherwise dispose of such Shares unless they are either (1) registered under the Securities Act and all applicable state securities laws, or (2) exempt from such registration in the opinion of Company counsel.

10.    Lock-Up Agreement. The Optioned hereby agrees that in the event that the Optioned exercises this Option during a period in which any directors or officers of the Company have agreed with one or more underwriters not to sell securities of the Company, then, as a condition to such exercise, the Optioned shall enter into an agreement, in form and substance satisfactory to the Company, pursuant to which the Optioned shall agree to restrictions on transferability of the Shares comparable to the restrictions agreed upon by such directors or officers of the Company.

11.    Other Plans. No amounts of income received by the Optioned pursuant to this Grant Agreement shall be considered compensation for purposes of any pension or retirement plan, insurance plan or any other employee benefit plan of the Company or its subsidiaries, unless otherwise expressly provided in such plan.

12.    No Guarantee of Continued Service. The Optioned acknowledges and agrees that the right to exercise the Option pursuant to the exercise schedule hereof is earned only by continuing Service with the Company and/or its Subsidiaries (and not through the act of being hired, being granted an option or purchasing shares hereunder). The Optioned further acknowledges and agrees that (i) this Grant Agreement, the transactions contemplated hereunder and the exercise schedule set forth herein do not constitute an express or implied promise of continued employment or other Service for the exercise period or for any other period, and shall not interfere with the Optionee’s right or the right of the Company or its Subsidiaries to terminate the employment or Service relationship at any time, with or without cause, subject to the terms of any written employment agreement that the Optionee may have entered into with the Company or any of its Subsidiaries; and (ii) the Company would not have granted this Option to the Optionee but for these acknowledgements and agreements.

13.    Entire Agreement; Governing Law. The Plan is incorporated herein by reference. The Plan and this Grant Agreement constitute the entire agreement of the parties with respect to the subject matter hereof and supersede in their entirety all prior undertakings and agreements of the Company and the Optionee with respect to the subject matter hereof, and may not be modified adversely to the Optionee’s interest except by means of a writing signed by the Company and the Optionee. In the event of any conflict between this Grant Agreement and the Plan, the Plan shall be controlling, except as otherwise specifically provided in the Plan. This Grant Agreement shall be construed under the laws of the State of Delaware, without regard to conflict of laws principles.

14.    Opportunity for Review. Optionee and the Company agree that this Option is granted under and governed by the terms and conditions of the Plan and this Grant Agreement. The Optionee has reviewed the Plan and this Grant Agreement in their entirety, has had an opportunity to obtain the advice of counsel prior to executing this Grant Agreement and fully understands all provisions of the Plan and this Grant Agreement. The Optionee hereby agrees to accept as binding, conclusive and final all decisions or interpretations of the Committee upon any questions relating to the Plan and this Grant Agreement. The Optionee further agrees to notify the Company upon any change in the residence address indicated herein.

15.    Section 409A.    This Option is intended to be excepted from coverage under Section 409A and shall be administered, interpreted and construed accordingly. The Company may, in its sole discretion and without the Optionee’s consent, modify or amend the terms of this Grant Agreement, impose conditions on the timing and effectiveness of the exercise of the Option by Optionee, or take any other action it deems necessary or advisable, to cause the Option to be excepted from Section 409A (or to comply therewith to the extent the Company determines it is not excepted).

[Signature Page Follows]

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties hereto have executed this Grant Agreement as of the date set forth in Exhibit A.


Name: Phil Horlock
Title: President & Chief Executive Officer






(a).    Optionee’s Name: ____            

(b).    Date of Grant: _______            

(c).    Number of Shares Subject to the Option: ____     

(d).    Exercise Price: $____ per Share

(e).    Expiration Date: _________        

_______ (Initials)

_______ (Initials)
Company Signatory