Zynga CEO Mark Pincus gave away a lot of stock to his employees when he founded his social gaming behemoth and now he’s wishing he hadn’t.
According to the Wall Street Journal the company is demanding that employees give back their stock options under the threat of losing their jobs.
The move is meant to avoid the “Google chef” situation which refers to an infamous incident in which a chef for the world’s largest search engine was given $20 million after Google launched their own initial public offering.
It should be noted that Zynga is only asking employees to return the part of their stock that has not yet vested which they would lose anyways if they were fired by the company.
It’s believed that the reacquired stock will be used to push up the value of the company’s offering and potentially used to hire more top talent through the use of some reacquired stock options.
The move could potentially anger many investors in Silicon Valley who realize the importance of stock options when it comes to startups finding top talent.
In the meantime the move shows a lack of control by Pincus when it comes to directing the financial future of his organization, if Zynga could so easily throw away millions of potential dollars it begs the question what will they do next?
Do you think Zynga employees should ban together and stand up to their company’s complete lack of respect for them? This will be one case workers in silicon valley watch closely.