Yahoo’s chief executive Marissa Mayer could stand to walk away from Yahoo with a payout of $122m following Verizon’s $4.8bn purchase of the ailing company.
As the ink dries on the deal, sources have told the Wall Street Journal that Mayer is unlikely to have a prominent role, if any, under Verizon. The boss stands to take away more a $55m ‘golden parachute’ if she is terminated as a result of the sale, Fortune is reporting that her total compensation could be more than double this figure.
Yahoo was sold for a fraction of the value at its peak, but if its new owners decide not to keep Mayer on she will profit from selling $67m worth of shares and options if she exits claims Fortune – which calculated the final sum with help from compensation consultant Brian Foley.
“I think the bottom line is look at what [Mayer] is ending up with: She did quite well even if shareholders didn’t,” Foley said.
Mayer was appointed by Yahoo four years ago, and was drafted in from Google to try and turn around the one-time market leader’s fortunes. Despite a series of acquisitions, including that of Tumblr for $1.1bn she failed to get the business back on track.
After Verizon snapped up Yahoo’s core internet business in July Mayer hit out at “gender charged reporting” around her leadership.
Speaking to the Financial Times she said: “I’ve tried to be gender-blind and believe tech is a gender-neutral zone but do think there has been gender-charged reporting.
“We all see the things that only plague women leaders, like articles that focus on their appearance, like Hillary Clinton sporting a new pantsuit. I think all women are aware of that, but I had hoped in 2015 and 2016 that I would see fewer articles like that. It’s a shame.”
Verizon intends to merge the business with AOL, bought last year for $4.4bn.