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Skype Execs Purged On Eve of MS Takeover

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the out-with-the-old dept.

Businesses 300

jfruhlinger writes "You might think that the executive team that engineered a lucrative buyout for their company would be rewarded. But eight execs from Skype instead found themselves fired just before their company was formally taken over by Microsoft. It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond; rather, the private equity firm that owns a 70 percent stake in Skype wanted to cut back on the payout to company execs that would normally accompany this kind of transaction."

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Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (3, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501156)

It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond

There must be SOME way I can blame this on evil Microsoft. Were the fired execs open source, by any chance?

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (2)

Enry (630) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501198)

They wouldn't have been fired if MSFT didn't buy Skype?

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (1)

Minter92 (148860) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501360)

No No No.. you are behind the times.. now we blame everything on Apple..... and sometimes google.

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (2)

CharlyFoxtrot (1607527) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501444)

I like it better like this, I would've hated to give MS credit for firing a bunch of the overpaid freeloading bastards.

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501642)

And you know they are "overpaid freeloading bastards" how?

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (5, Insightful)

captain_sweatpants (1997280) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501724)

You must not have noticed the reference to them being executives.

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (3, Insightful)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501978)

So some other overpaid freeloading bastards (The VCs) fired some other overpaid, freeloading bastards (The Execs)?

Re:Ah, but I wanted to blame Microsoft (1)

siriuskase (679431) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501660)

How many similarly paid, highly ranked were not let go?

The invisible hand of captialism (5, Insightful)

Pope (17780) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501182)

Always seems to be carrying a very sharp sword.

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501574)

I'll take getting fired over getting "purged" any day, thanks! Especially when it falls within the contract that I signed voluntarily, knowing that if it didn't, there is actually something I can do about it!

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (0)

darjen (879890) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501690)

I find it extremely hard to believe that Microsoft would exist anywhere near its current dominant position if we actually did have capitalism. Instead, we have government protection of intellectual property, which is essentially the foundation of Microsoft's entire business model. Government force is not capitalism.

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (1)

dynamo (6127) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501896)

"I find it extremely hard to believe that Microsoft would exist anywhere near its current dominant position if we actually did have capitalism."

Damn straight.

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501908)

Considering that there is no specific definition of capitalism; and that the American economy has to greater or less extent all of the agreed-upon components of capitalism... that's a rather sweeping statement you've made there. You've implied that government protection of intellectual property is fundamentally incompatible with a capitalist economic system, but haven't provided anything that proves it.

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (2)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501944)

I'm curious how you imagine that world to be.

It's not like we don't have an open source version of near every kind of software Microsoft makes.

In the sense that no one would sink the resources that Microsoft has into developing the likes of a Windows or an Office if it was completely legal for everyone to just directly copy it? Yeah, that's probably true -- but then the free closest equivalents we have today probably wouldn't be as far along, in general, either.

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (1)

Palpatine_li (1547707) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501950)

how is government protection of intellectual property fundamentally different from protection of property, which capitalism has to base on?

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36502016)

A better question in that case is - would the industry as a whole be more advanced than now, or would it be less advanced?

Without government protection of intellectual property, how would the companies protect their stuff? A shit-load of DRM? No open standards?

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (4, Insightful)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502056)

Yeah, this argument is retarded, as everyone else in the sector enjoys the same protections on their software. Basically, it says, "If I could compete with Microsoft by selling their OS, Microsoft Windows, then they wouldn't be a monopoly." Basically saying that, if you could just clone their software and compete with them by selling the same thing, yet you without all the R&D costs that Microsoft put into it, then there'd be "competition".

This also completely ignores the fact that Microsoft forced a bunch of OEMs to pay them royalties on all computers, even those without Windows, in blatant violation of all anti-trust laws and anti-competition laws. Face it, Microsoft became a monopoly of their own doing, not by being propped up by "government."

Re:The invisible hand of captialism (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36502114)

> Government force is not capitalism.

Who enforces contracts?

Government force is required for capitalism to exist.

'Jackass' star dies in car accident (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501208)

"Jackass" star Ryan Dunn died in a car crash in Pennsylvania early Monday morning, TMZ is reporting. The website confirmed the accident with the mother of fellow "Jackass" star Bam Margera. The 34-year-old Dunn and an unidentified person both died in the crash which happened around 3 a.m. at Route 322 and New Street in West Goshen Township, according to TMZ.

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501234)

Good

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501286)

No, it's not.

It's just Darwin... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501456)

...in action.

Drunk driving and 110 MPH crash. Fortunately they only took out themselves in a single-vehicle crash and didn't kill any other innocent motorists.

Re:It's just Darwin... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501874)

Fortunately they only took out themselves in a single-vehicle crash and didn't kill any other innocent motorists.

I definitely agree with this.

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (1)

creat3d (1489345) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501752)

You're right, "insignificant" would be more appropriate.

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501502)

Jackass, rat's ass, fat ass, hairy ass, who GIVES a shit?

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501622)

Jackass, rat's ass, fat ass, hairy ass, who GIVES a shit?

Those last three typically do.

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (0)

Jaysyn (203771) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501544)

Don't care. At all.

Re:'Jackass' star dies in car accident (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501706)

Never watched the show, don't care, what does this have to do with this Slashdot story?

Fired? (3, Informative)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501210)

The spokeswoman declined to say whether the eight executives were laid off or resigned.

Someone knows something not in the linked article?

Re:Fired? (4, Insightful)

eln (21727) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501326)

At the executive level, "fired", "resigned", and "laid off" all mean the same thing. At any rate, even if they didn't have golden parachutes as part of their employment contracts (and they're idiots if they didn't), I'm sure they have plenty of stock and stock options to dry their tears with.

Re:Fired? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501644)

No, they lost their options because they weren't vested yet. Poof!

Re:Fired? (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502066)

And if those options weren't vested yet?

Whole team? (3, Interesting)

siriuskase (679431) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501762)

What matter is whether they were the whole team, half the team. or deadwood statues of the team.

It's hard for outsiders to recognize the deadwood, and it's hard for insiders to fire their friends. Sometimes takeover time is a good time for insiders to let the outsiders clean house. Is this what happened or was the whole team let go?? This is something that an outside observer can figure just by visiting the parking lot.

Who cares if the were laid off. They are out in either case. Unless they turned into contractors.

Re:Whole team? (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502084)

They were still part of the company, taking a risk in doing so. Should they not partake in the rewards?

when the victims of corporate psychopaths (5, Insightful)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501220)

are other corporate psychopaths, it's hard to feel sympathy

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (2)

Sir_Eptishous (873977) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501408)

Exactamundo!

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (5, Interesting)

DontBlameCanada (1325547) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501562)

IMHO, the only thing worse than execs of of a corp getting paid off at the expense of employees during a take over, is when a nameless venture cap org does.

We don't know the whole story, but if venture cap nuked execs (that might possibly have been instrumental in making the company successful) to increase their own take, that is *WORSE*.

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (3, Insightful)

twidarkling (1537077) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502068)

Why? At least VCs actually do something with the cash. Invest it in other places to make more money. C*Os tend to simply sit in a company and get rich. Sometimes they move to other companies that are already established and get rich. Very rarely do they take that money and knowledge and make something new to make money with.

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (1)

CFBMoo1 (157453) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501630)

"are other corporate psychopaths, it's hard to feel sympathy"

Allow me to appeal to your sense of charity.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qDC0qcf0kzE

Remember the money you give won't just save a life, it will save a lifestyle.

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501710)

are other corporate psychopaths, it's hard to feel sympathy

Do you know for a fact the skype execs are/were psychopaths????

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501984)

I know it's ALL the rage to spew hate at people that have ever been referred to as "executive", but do you know something about these particular people that the rest of us don't?

Or is this just the typically irrational, "anyone that ever wore a tie wants to eat your children and rape your wife" bullshit?

Re:when the victims of corporate psychopaths (1)

Gilmoure (18428) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502010)

*golf clap*

Corporate Sleeze (3, Insightful)

DaMattster (977781) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501224)

That is a really slimy thing to do. However, usually the little guy gets hurt in mergers and aquisitions so I, in some ways, am happy to have the upper echelon get a taste of it. I think these executives that got affected might consider the smaller guys in their future roles, perish the thought.

Re:Corporate Sleeze (2)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501406)

I suspect that they will consider them, since the lesson here would appear to be "finish doing unto others a bit faster next time, or others will do unto you."

I don't understand the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501486)

If the executives are part owners, then they will be compensated according to their stake in the company. But if they hold no equity in the company, then why should they be rewarded as if they do? They are pulling in a salary just like everybody else who works there, and that salary is always subject to change (or termination).

Being executives, these individuals should be well aware that business is all about the bottom line.

Re:I don't understand the problem (1)

NoNonAlphaCharsHere (2201864) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501800)

Being executives, these individuals should be well aware that business is all about the bottom line.

Well said! Fuck loyalty! Fuck commitment! Fuck achievement! Fuck reward!
In a Proper World(tm), we'd send people like these to the gas chamber after they'd served their purpose.

Re:I don't understand the problem (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502106)

Said the guy who's company is probably wondering why it's employees don't work harder for them or show them any loyalty.

Re:Corporate Sleeze (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501516)

As a longtime Skype user who now has to find a non-microsoft solution before they manage to corrupt Skype into a windows-like pile of crap, I'm glad these idiot managers got what's coming to them. I also hope the rest of the Skype community leaves at the same time, so microsoft gets what's coming to them also.

Still it would have been pretty ironic is if had been MS.

Re:Corporate Sleeze (1)

dynamo (6127) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501610)

Same here. Screw the quitters who sold out, now I have to find a new VOIP solution.

Re:Corporate Sleeze (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501640)

While I agree with you that execs generally should feel burdens of the workers, in this case I think it sends a very bad message to the workers. The message is that the parent company does not care about contribution. Of the execs named, some of them have helped become what it is. The workers have been alerted that the parent company does not care about the transition at all only the sale.

Re:Corporate Sleeze (1)

dynamo (6127) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501942)

So you're implying that some of the workers might have thought that MS cares about contribution? Of value, to products they sell? No, I don't think anyone without a financial reason to would believe that, if they've used an MS product other than Excel.

Investor greed trumps the executive's greed (2)

kenh (9056) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501230)

"You might think that the executive team that engineered a lucrative buyout for their company would be rewarded. But eight execs from Skype instead found themselves fired just before their company was formally taken over by Microsoft. It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond; rather, the private equity firm that owns a 70 percent stake in Skype wanted to cut back on the payout to company execs that would normally accompany this kind of transaction."

I can't see how it was reasonable to expect that either side of this transaction would want to "reward" those that "engineered a lucrative buy-out" - either it costs the investors money (why give up money you don't have to?) or the buyer will be mad at the people that increased the price of your aqusition (why reward someone for driving up your cost?).

Re:Investor greed trumps the executive's greed (1)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501614)

How about the factor that by removing the execs, the acquisition and transition is now more complicated which may mean that it may be more expensive. From the sounds of it, these execs will leave soon. While they do not have technical knowledge, they may have contacts and business knowledge MS will need. Add to that the sudden removal of execs may mean the people under them may leave too.

Re:Investor greed trumps the executive's greed (1)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501678)

It only costs short investors money; long-position investors make money because of the increased (over)valuation of the company.

Re:Investor greed trumps the executive's greed (1)

s73v3r (963317) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502126)

This statement is absurd on its face. Why the fuck else should they engineer this, if they weren't getting a reward?

I smell ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501232)

Lawsuit!

Re:I smell ... (2)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501396)

Not that the executives can't sue but they normally have contract that may allow the company to do these things. However the details of the contracts are important. The articles seem to suggest that by removing these execs, the parent company saves a lot of money as the executive stock options that the execs would have gotten either go back to the company for free or extremely reduced cost. That is, unless the contracts stipulate other terms.

Agreed (2)

gr8_phk (621180) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501410)

It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond; rather, the private equity firm that owns a 70 percent stake in Skype wanted to cut back on the payout to company execs that would normally accompany this kind of transaction.

If the situation is what the summary suggests, the execs will sue them and the investor will end up paying legal fees AND whatever their obligation would have been had they not been fired.

Interesting... (3, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501252)

Ordinarily, even pathetic, abject failure verging on negligence isn't enough to get the People Who Matter sacked. These private equity guys must have some epic level suits on staff, if they are able to rightsize executives as though they were mere peons...

Re:Interesting... (2, Informative)

TheSpoom (715771) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501488)

Please don't use the word "rightsize". It's just insulting all around. They were fired.

Re:Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501608)

They owned 70% of Skype. They have absolute power through share votes. They essentially own the company and can unilaterally sack anyone they want, including all the executives.

--Anon as am at work (where logging in to sites is forbidden)

Re:Interesting... (1)

Hazel Bergeron (2015538) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501776)

Ownership implies responsibility. Shareholders are not responsible for debt so they are not owners, just leeches.

Private equity firms are the Gekkoesque scourge of modern capitalism, confusing the passion of success in producing something you love (see Hewlett, Packard, Olsen et al.) with the passion of making money because the rules let you.

Re:Interesting... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501968)

Shareholders are not responsible for their debt, but they are behind the debtors in line for getting their investment back.

Re:Interesting... (1)

Zocalo (252965) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501632)

I wonder if there is any correlation between those execs that were fired and those that didn't think that a buyout by MS was the way to go. Now that there are likely to be large sums of cash heading their way I can just imagine some creative headcount reduction going on to try and increase the slices of the pie for the rest; "You didn't support the MS buyout, so you're not getting a share of the payouts either..."

Shed no tears for them. (5, Informative)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501274)

These guys are big fish, swimming with the sharks. For example Gurle joined in Jan 2010. Just 18 months with the company. All the fired ones seem to be the MBA types who move in just to dress the company up for sale or IPO. Not the founders and early grunts who toil in garages and warehouses during the very early days living on pizza, sleeping in the office, desperately churning out code on a shoe string budget, not knowing if they can make pay roll next month.

These suits ate little fish in their time. They got eaten by bigger fish. They will again start eating little fish once again. Just stay out of their jaws, if you can.

Re:Shed no tears for them. (2)

PPH (736903) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501744)

I'll shed no tears. Primarily because people at these levels typically negotiate personal services contracts rather than employment at will. And any smart attorney will include language to lock in benefits (or a suitable termination fee) in the event any change in ownership is impending.

The founders and early employees will probably get Microsoft stock. For that, they will shed tears. I'll be ROTFLMA.

Go that right! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501838)

Everyone seems think those executives who were canned were fired, told to pack their shit, escorted to the curb, and then that's all. The article doesn't say but if it's like any other executive canning:

They were given a letter and that says the resigned along with a nice big fat severance along with their stock and options. They then call the executive recruiter who then starts pounding the pavement for them.

While they're "looking" for a new job, they're on the golf course talking to their buddies who will be looking for bigger and better things for them because - they have the Skype M&A on their resumes - something that I'd kill for to have on my resume! In the meantime it's golf, fine wine and scotch, trophy wives and mistresses and hanging out having fun!

Their next job will be a nice seven figure job with options and if their lucky, it's IPO or M&A will put them on the Forbes 400.

They'll be more than fine.

Don't feel bad, dear managers (4, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501308)

You know, every time a takeover happens some people get fired.

I am delighted to see that for a change it happens to you.

Re:Don't feel bad, dear managers (0)

Fibe-Piper (1879824) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501476)

You know, every time a takeover happens some people get fired.

I am delighted to see that for a change it happens to you.

Mangers aren't the same as executives who orchestrate giant sales. Though all executives are supposed to "Manage" their company's welfare, they rarely "manage" employees that make up the disgruntled or gruntled masses; i.e. you.

Managers are not all highly paid and soulless. They have families. You on the other hand seem embittered beyond the point of reason. I pity you more than the Skype people about to start looking for work.

My company got bought by Microsoft.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501362)

And all I got was an effing T-shirt //true story //groove

and the next step is.... (1)

condition-label-red (657497) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501398)

...cue litigation in ...1...2...3...

Re:and the next step is.... (2)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501520)

...cue litigation in ...1...2...3...

Countdown fail!

Re:and the next step is.... (1)

TheGratefulNet (143330) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501602)

well, as long as he exits when zero, he'll eventually get there.

Reading into it? (3, Insightful)

DaScribbler (701492) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501402)

This submission, and the article referenced to, read entirely differently.

Where exactly does it say they were fired?

Re:Reading into it? (1)

Lifyre (960576) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501734)

It doesn't. There is probably more and better sources that mysteriously got left out of the summary per usual practice.

mergers are statistically bad for everyone (5, Insightful)

smoothnorman (1670542) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501412)

A wise old CEO wheezed unto me: "A merger is a risk to everyone except one of the two CEOs - to everyone else it is a danger". Mergers reduce competition, so the market loses; mergers cost stockholders, at least in the short-run; mergers are engines of redundancy so it's a threat to all the employees. The only possible virtual gain is an investors' promise of less competition in the marketplace. Almost everyone loses. So the next time you read: "Massive-corp to buy out Macro-corp!" try not to cheer for the two original owners who get their one-time lottery prize, but instead pause in lament for the majority and progress in general.

Re:mergers are statistically bad for everyone (1)

imric (6240) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501534)

That can't be - mergers are the engine that drives the famous free market competition - after all, only regulation slows down mergers, and regulations are the antithesis of 'freedom'. It's not as if maximizing profit (the goal of corporations) doesn't mean minimizing competition or anything...

Re:mergers are statistically bad for everyone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501572)

A wise old CEO wheezed unto me: "A merger is a risk to everyone except one of the two CEOs - to everyone else it is a danger". Mergers reduce competition, so the market loses; mergers cost stockholders, at least in the short-run; mergers are engines of redundancy so it's a threat to all the employees. The only possible virtual gain is an investors' promise of less competition in the marketplace. Almost everyone loses. So the next time you read: "Massive-corp to buy out Macro-corp!" try not to cheer for the two original owners who get their one-time lottery prize, but instead pause in lament for the majority and progress in general.

Hmm.. Not sure I agree with this. Fx a lot of the product and services we think of as coming from Apple and Google today are actually companies and tech they originally bought, and made much more out of than original company could do. One thing MS could do with Skype is to take on Telcos head on. That would be interesting, and something very few would have the muscles to support.

Re:mergers are statistically bad for everyone (1)

cowtamer (311087) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501650)

>> but instead pause in lament for the majority and progress in general

I always do! The other thing I try to do is leave as soon as possible if the company I happen to be working for is the one that has been acquired (former co-workers are inevitably laid off several months later). I hate mergers more as a customer since I've never seen service _NOT_ suffer... (the exception might be the acquisition of KeyHole by Google to form Google Earth)

Well said. (2)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501718)

Because of our corrupt campaign finance system, neither Republicans nor Democrats will enforce the anti-trust laws. So we have constant mergers reducing the number of players competing in every market, but no force actively breaking up larger companies into smaller companies to apply pressure in the other direction.

The net result is less competition, and I shouldn't have to remind you that competition is the engine that drives a capitalist system.

Re:mergers are statistically bad for everyone (1)

SmilingBoy (686281) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501910)

No, mergers also generate efficiencies, and efficiencies are good for everyone. Especially true for vertical mergers (i.e. for firms producing complementary products). Look up "double marginalisation".

Re:mergers are statistically bad for everyone (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36502122)

The effeciencies that mergers generate give the business more freedom to reduce quality, reduce choice, and raise prices. The removal of competition allows this, and the desire for a better bottom line incites it.

These economic "bads" far outweigh any "goods" any merger could offer.

Did someone forget... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501484)

to pack their golden parachute?

Greedy Bastidges (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501496)

What a bunch of aholes. More for me, one of the major problems with corporate America today. Expect lawsuits...

Awesme and most auspicious news (1)

McNihil (612243) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501506)

Now we can not say "Nobody got fired for buying Microsoft" let it spread like wildfire... let all top execs that are Microsoft Horny get laid off.

Re:Awesme and most auspicious news (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501830)

Well, still nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft, but you might get fired for Microsoft buying you.

I hope (1)

Verunks (1000826) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501584)

I hope they purge their gui designer too, I'm still using skype 3.8 because of the horrible chat interface of skype 4 and 5, for example these days everyone has a widescreen, so why the fuck they waste vertical space by putting a huge contact list on the top instead of leaving it to the right? the chat content doesn't automatically resize with the window, you have to drag it, also there is no big visual difference between your and others text, with skype 3 you get a big blue/gray bar before the text, with skype 4-5 it's very subtle since it's only the nickname that changes color
I don't use osx but I've seen that they made a gui contest, this is the one that is winning right now http://macthemes.skype.com/themes/54 [skype.com] I wonder if skype mac user will become epileptic after using this theme :P

Fired is UKNOWN! (1)

archer, the (887288) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501612)

TFA just says they left. TFA specifically says it is unknown whether it was a layoff or they resigned. The word "fire" isn't on the page.

Fired is clearly speculative (1)

Benfea (1365845) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501746)

Unfortunately, such a determination is always speculative because companies are usually not up-front about why top level executives leave.

So... (2)

PrimeNumber (136578) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501694)

What this basically means is the same type of executives that outsource operations and employees, needlessly eliminating thousands of positions at high tech companies for "cost cutting" purposes aka bonuses -- these very people are surprised they are being treated the same way by another greedy group of managers and money-men ?!

God says... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501704)

In denial on God, still.

God says...
programming Vegas guilty cheerful quit_it delicious Moses
ehh_a_wise_guy cheerful

typical microsoft (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501722)

let's buy a company, fire all the people who made it worth buying and promote our useless bureaucrats from within to "manage" the project right into the ground. oh yeah and we'll market the hell out of it so people will think we know what we're doing. here's a thought microsoft ... make something useful and people will use it. much more effective than your current model of putting lipstick on a pig and calling it windows 7, internet explorer, zune ... the list goes on.

Submitte, Do you have an evidence for your claims? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36501756)

Submitter, do you have an evidence for your claims that these execs were stripped of their equity stakes when they separated from the company?

The linked article does not support the extraordinary claims in the summary.

The way of the sociopath. (1)

wcrowe (94389) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501794)

A story about sociopaths firing other sociopaths.

Corporate behavior (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 3 years ago | (#36501906)

Usually, it's the little guys who get the axe while the executives get a parachute. Clearly there is more to this story than what we have available to us now. Perhaps there simply wasn't enough at the lower levels to cut to make a difference.

In the past, we have seen certain amounts of honor among the high level executive group offering each other golden parachutes and other deals that the regular people don't get. And what I read did not mention anything about exit compensation packages. They might have received some sort of package on their way out. It just wasn't mentioned. And the speculation about the 70 percent holder axing the executives seems to be just that. I think the submitter of the article added a bit much information that is not within the article. Is this insider information?

In any case, *citation required!*

We simply don't have the information on the subject needed to have any type of discussion on the topic.

Still, presuming the summary/opinion is accurate, it's nice to see them get a golden shower instead of a golden parachute.

hahahahaha! (1)

hesaigo999ca (786966) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502004)

Good for them.....
they should have done this with all the big bankers also that put us in the economic mess we've been in, so that after being fired would
touch 0 dollars upon exiting for being so lax with the loan assessment scenarios that put the whole world economy in jeopardy!

Q. about "at will" employment... (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502008)

I live in BC, Canada... and the concept of "at will" employment is a bit alien to me... I am wondering, however, do states which have it even utilize the concept of a finite length probationary period for new employees? I'm asking because my understanding about "at will" employment is that a person can be let go from their job for just about any reason that suits the employer's fancy, at any time, as long as the reason given doesn't come afoul of any human rights. In BC, this type of dismissal can only be legally practiced during an employee's probationary period, which is typically 3 months long, but I've seen them go as long as 6. Regardless, the exact duration of the probation is known when a person is hired and cannot legally be extended by the employer later.

AFAIK, this sort of dismissal would be considered wrongful termination where I live.. the general settlement policy for wrongful termination typically being equivalent to about 1 year's salary or wages.

Wait, where's teh connection (1)

thePowerOfGrayskull (905905) | more than 3 years ago | (#36502026)

Where's the connection between TFA and the summary? TFS

"You might think that the executive team that engineered a lucrative buyout for their company would be rewarded. But eight execs from Skype instead found themselves fired just before their company was formally taken over by Microsoft. It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond; rather, the private equity firm that owns a 70 percent stake in Skype wanted to cut back on the payout to company execs that would normally accompany this kind of transaction."

Damn, that's sneaky. Except wait - here are the eight execs:

The departures included David Gurle, vice president and general manager for Skype for Business; Don Albert, vice president and general manager for the Americas and Advertising; Doug Bewsher, chief marketing officer; Christopher Dean, head of consumer market business development; Russ Shaw, vice president and general manager; and Anne Gillespie, head of human resources. Two executives who joined Skype following its acquisition earlier this year of video-sharing utility Qik have also left. They are Qik founder Ramu Sunkara and senior vice president Allyson Campa.

Sooo... on what basis do we conclude that these eight execs engineered the deal? Let's also not forget that these were released in the months leading up to the buyout - it's not like on the eve of the approval they were all fired. I could also make a point of saying we don't *know* that they were fired - as TFA doesn't specify it - but the timing *does*seems awfully convenient if they all decided to quit. )

Re:Wait, where's teh connection (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36502092)

Where's the connection between TFA and the summary?
TFS

"You might think that the executive team that engineered a lucrative buyout for their company would be rewarded. But eight execs from Skype instead found themselves fired just before their company was formally taken over by Microsoft. It appears that this move isn't meddling from Redmond; rather, the private equity firm that owns a 70 percent stake in Skype wanted to cut back on the payout to company execs that would normally accompany this kind of transaction."

Damn, that's sneaky. Except wait - here are the eight execs:

The departures included David Gurle, vice president and general manager for Skype for Business; Don Albert, vice president and general manager for the Americas and Advertising; Doug Bewsher, chief marketing officer; Christopher Dean, head of consumer market business development; Russ Shaw, vice president and general manager; and Anne Gillespie, head of human resources.

Two executives who joined Skype following its acquisition earlier this year of video-sharing utility Qik have also left. They are Qik founder Ramu Sunkara and senior vice president Allyson Campa.

Sooo... on what basis do we conclude that these eight execs engineered the deal? Let's also not forget that these were released in the months leading up to the buyout - it's not like on the eve of the approval they were all fired. I could also make a point of saying we don't *know* that they were fired - as TFA doesn't specify it - but the timing *does*seems awfully convenient if they all decided to quit. )

Not only that, but there is no mention of why they are no longer with Skype in the original article... where did the proposition that they were let go to cut bonuses come from?

Acquisition (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#36502096)

http://despair.com/acquisition.html

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