Skype just fired a bunch of execs right before their acquisition by Microsoft closes, in order to reduce their payouts, sources tell Bloomberg. Many stock option plans at startups and private tech companies include “acceleration upon change of control”, meaning you vest and can cash out if and when the company is acquired. If you get fired right before, you only get the options you vested up until then (if that). It’s not clear if that’s what happened, but that could be an explanation.
If Skype is really firing execs just to reduce their payouts, it seems that it’s just a lawsuit waiting to happen.
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