Microsoft Declares Quarterly Dividend and Amends Corporate Governance Guidelines Regarding Election of Directors

REDMOND, Wash. , Sept. 23, 2005 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that its board of directors declared a quarterly dividend of $0.08 per share. The dividend is payable Dec. 8, 2005 to shareholders of record on Nov. 17, 2005. The ex-dividend date will be Nov. 15, 2005. Microsoft also announced that its board of directors has amended corporate governance guidelines regarding the election of directors.

Under the amendment to Microsoft’s corporate governance guidelines, any director who receives a majority of withheld votes in an uncontested election must submit his or her resignation to the board. The Governance and Nominating Committee will in turn consider the resignation and make a recommendation to the board about how to proceed.

“Today’s decision gives shareholders a greater voice in the process for selecting directors, and continues Microsoft’s tradition of strong corporate governance,” said Bill Gates, chairman of the Microsoft Board of Directors. “The board is committed to continuously reviewing best practices and adopting those that serve the long-term interests of our shareholders.”

Microsoft’s corporate governance guidelines can be found at the

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