Joyce Park stashed this in Silicon Valley!
Mark Pincus is allegedly leaning on early employees to VOLUNTARILY GIVE BACK their pre-IPO shares. Because he has GIVER'S REMORSE. WTF?!?!?
Oh what makes it extra special: evidently Zynga waited to spring this during the quiet period, so they can't be asked questions about it!
I was just going to say something about this as it was so offensive! If later employees made contributions then give them more stock! What a misstep!
My favorite part of this is the note Mark Pincus sent to the Zyngans after the story broke:
The wall street journal posted a story last night (copied below) which paints our meritocracy in a false and skewed light.….Being a meritocracy is one of our core values and it’s on our walls. We believe that every employee deserves the same opportunity to lead. Its not about where or when you enter zynga its how far you can grow. This is what our culture of leveling up is all about and its one of our coolest features.
we want everyone to put zynga first and contribute to the overall success of our company and all of you have.
Clawing back stock is a peculiar feature of Pincus's definition of meritocracy.
It says to its recipients in the interest of fairness to all: "You're good enough for us to not fire, but not good enough for the stock grant we originally made you."
The lesson here? It's better to give more stock options to people who are performing great, than it is to take away options from people who are underperforming.