Twitter's Top Executives set to exit with $100 mn payout

Chief Executive Officer Parag Agrawal, who stepped into the role less than a year ago, is eligible to receive roughly $50 million, according to calculations by Bloomberg News. Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal and Vijaya Gadde, head of legal, policy and trust, are in line for about $37 million and $17 million each, respectively.
Parag Agrawal
Parag Agrawal

SAN FRANCISCO: Three of Twitter Inc.’s top executives who were said to be fired after Elon Musk completed his takeover are poised to collect more than $100 million in severance and payouts of previously granted equity awards.

Parag Agrawal
Timeline of billionaire Elon Musk’s bid to control Twitter

Chief Executive Officer Parag Agrawal, who stepped into the role less than a year ago, is eligible to receive roughly $50 million, according to calculations by Bloomberg News. Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal and Vijaya Gadde, head of legal, policy and trust, are in line for about $37 million and $17 million each, respectively.

The three and other major Twitter executives were among those to depart after Musk took the helm at the social media giant on Thursday, people familiar with the matter said. Their exits cap more than six months of public and legal wrangling that now have ended with Musk, the world's richest person, seizing the CEO job.

Like many top leaders at big public companies, Agrawal and his lieutenants were entitled to severance equal to a year's salary and cash-outs of unvested equity awards if Twitter was bought and they lost their jobs in the process, according to the terms of the company's severance policy. Twitter must also cover their health insurance premiums for a year, amounting to about $31,000 each.

Critics often point out the unfairness of granting bosses gilded exit packages while normal employees who lose their jobs after a merger or buyout hardly get as soft of a landing. Defenders of golden parachutes say they let executives focus on what's best for shareholders instead of worrying about whether they'll be replaced if a deal is struck.

In the case of Agrawal, 38, who had been at Twitter for almost a decade, he held firm that the company see through Musk's acquisition at $54.20 per share even though the Tesla Inc. co-founder said he didn't have confidence in management. Text messages unveiled during the lawsuit over the deal show that the two had a contentious text exchange early on in the process after Musk asked his followers whether Twitter was "dying."

A Twitter representative didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Twitter for almost a decade, he held firm that the company see through Musk's acquisition at $54.20 per share even though the Tesla Inc. co-founder said he didn't have confidence in management. Text messages unveiled during the lawsuit over the deal show that the two had a contentious text exchange early on in the process after Musk asked his followers whether Twitter was "dying."

A Twitter representative didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

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