Advertising and Marketing Costs
Advertising and marketing costs are expensed as incurred and totaled $106,345, $102,969 and $69,257 for the years ended December 31, 2017, 2016 and 2015, respectively. Advertising and marketing costs are included in other operating costs in the consolidated statement of income.
Rent expense for our leases, which generally have escalating rentals over the term of the lease, is recorded on a straight-line basis over the lease term. The lease term is the lesser of 20 years inclusive of reasonably assured renewal periods, or the lease term. The lease term begins when we have the right to control the use of the property, which is typically before rent payments are due under the lease. The difference between the rent expense and rent paid is recorded as deferred rent in the consolidated balance sheet. Pre-opening rent is included in pre-opening costs in the consolidated statement of income. Tenant incentives used to fund leasehold improvements are recorded in deferred rent and amortized as reductions of rent expense over the term of the lease.
Additionally, certain operating leases contain clauses that provide additional contingent rent based on a percentage of sales greater than certain specified target amounts. Contingent rent expense is recognized provided the achievement of that target is considered probable.
We issue shares as part of employee compensation pursuant to the Amended and Restated Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc. 2011 Stock Incentive Plan (the “2011 Incentive Plan”). Stock only stock appreciation rights (“SOSARs”) and stock awards generally vest equally over two and three years and expire after seven years. Stock-based compensation expense is generally recognized on a straight-line basis for each separate vesting portion. Compensation expense related to employees eligible to retire and retain full rights to the awards is recognized over six months which coincides with the notice period. We estimate forfeitures based on historical data when determining the amount of stock-based compensation costs to be recognized in each period. We have also granted SOSARs and stock awards with performance vesting conditions and/or market vesting conditions. Stock awards with performance or market vesting conditions generally vest based on our achievement versus stated targets or criteria over a three-year performance and service period. Compensation expense on SOSARs subject to performance conditions is recognized over the longer of the estimated performance goal attainment period or time vesting period. Compensation expense on stock awards subject to performance conditions, which is based on the quantity of awards we have determined are probable of vesting, is recognized over the longer of the estimated performance goal attainment period or time vesting period. Compensation expense is recognized ratably for awards subject to market conditions regardless of whether the market condition is satisfied, provided that the requisite service has been provided. Some stock-based compensation awards are made to employees involved in our new restaurant development activities, and expense for these awards is recognized as capitalized development and included in leasehold improvements, property and equipment in the consolidated balance sheet.
Fair Value of Financial Instruments
The carrying value of cash and cash equivalents, accounts receivable and accounts payable approximate fair value because of their short-term nature.
Fair Value Measurements
Fair value is the price we would receive to sell an asset or pay to transfer a liability (exit price) in an orderly transaction between market participants. For assets and liabilities recorded or disclosed at fair value on a recurring basis, we determine fair value based on the following:
Level 1: Quoted prices in active markets for identical assets or liabilities that the entity has the ability to access.
Level 2: Observable inputs other than prices included in Level 1, such as quoted prices for similar assets and liabilities in active markets; quoted prices for identical or similar assets and liabilities in markets that are not active; or other inputs that are observable or can be corroborated with observable market data.
Level 3: Unobservable inputs that are supported by little or no market activity and that are significant to the fair value of the assets and liabilities. This includes certain pricing models, discounted cash flow methodologies and similar techniques that use significant unobservable inputs.