When the head honchos of tech companies get cut, it is rarely a pleasant site. One of the ugliest scenes in American tech corporate history was when Steve Jobs was unable to fight off moves to oust him from the company that he founded. Prior to the golden age of the iPod, the iPhone and the iPad, Apple was known for the Macintosh – the Mac. The Mac was born in 1984 and, shortly thereafter, Steve Jobs was fired. People would scratch their heads about this move because Steve Jobs was the visionary behind Apple computers. Although he wasn’t exactly the main guy behind the Mac, there was enough of the Mac’s DNA that had the unmistakable imprint of Steve Jobs’ creative inputs. It appeared that Steve Jobsf way of dealing with certain staff members got the best of him and he got kicked out of Apple. In spite of this, Steve Jobs dumped all of his Apple shares. A lot of people were saying that if he hung on to those Apple shares all the way until his death, he would have been one of the richest men in the world. Bottom line, executive firings are not pretty. They involve a lot of emotions and a lot of drama.
And now it looks like the latest tech firing involves Yahoo and it carried a huge price tag. A former Google executive, Henrique de Castro, was booted by Yahoo’s CEO, Marissa Mayer. But what made this firing such a brutal blow to Yahoo was that, it came with an 88 to 109 million dollar price tag, the total amount of compensation de Castro will walk away with: a tribute to his skills as a great negotiator. This is, of course, a golden parachute and it also includes the 39.2 million dollar compensation that he demanded. All told, the man worked at Yahoo for 15 months, so this averages to a pay close to 244,000 dollars a day. Hats off to Mr. de Castro for pulling off this coup. As much as we have been praising Marissa Mayer for trying to turn around Yahoo, at least when it comes to its staff and its underlying technological focus, this is a serious misstep on her part. Booting a guy that cost the company 244,000 per day is usually not a good move. Maybe if she kept the guy for a little bit longer, a lot of that golden parachute provisions would not have kicked in. Regardless, we are sure that she had her strong reason for wanting to get de Castro out of the picture as soon as possible.
Be that as it may, we have no doubts that Yahoo share holders will be quite forgiving of Marissa Mayer. Why Yahoo’s stock has been staging quite a bit of a comeback lately. So, I’m sure while this potential 109 million dollar loss is a big hit on Yahoo, the stock would do just fine.