Intuit stole my benefits
I've been working for Intuit for a few years now, and I always thought they were an honest company. They are always talking about integrity and telling us employees to be honest. We even have yearly honesty training classes that we take on the computer to help us be honest. I know that lots of companies pretend to be honest, but Intuit really seemed like they meant it. Their motto is "Integrity without compromise." As long as I was useful to Intuit, they treated me very well.
On a recent Tuesday I received a meeting notice titled "Meet Endurance and receive Offer Letter." 15 minutes later I found that my division of Intuit had been sold to a company called Endurance and that we could either accept an offer from Endurance by Friday or be fired with no severance or unemployment.
I have no problem with any of this so far. I've been through mergers and acquisitions before, and my experience has always been good. I don't carry a lot of debt, so I can adjust to changes in my income if necessary. After an acquisition moves my job to another company, I can either get a promotion, find a better job, get severance, get unemployment until I find a better job, or possibly get severance and unemployment, and a better job. Any of those outcomes are OK, and if Intuit had handled this like a normal spinoff, I wouldn't mind, but they stole our unvested benefits.
They stole all of our unvested RSU's, stock options and 401K matches. I only lost a few thousand but some of my co-workers lost $50K or more. People who were hired recently lost their entire hiring bonus. I've been here long enough so that my hiring bonus had vested and I only lost some yearly bonuses, but I'm one of the smallest victims and just my RSUs losses are over $7000. I haven't calculated how much they are stealing out of my 401K because it is too depressing to think about. They probably stole between $5-10 million from all 200 of us. They can legally do this, but it is not normally done by reputable companies. When a division is spun off, the employees are usually compensated in full for all unvested benefits. When I worked at Waller Creek and El Paso Energy bought us, they compensated the employees very generously for our stock options even though Waller Creek never went public. Unvested benefits are normally only lost when the company is bankrupt or being gutted. Intuit is a profitable company and they should not be stealing our benefits.
I'll write more about this as time permits. I want to tell you about the secret meeting that I attended and how I accidentally ruined it, and my missing confidentiality agreement, and Intuit's responses to my inquiries.
Posted by Albert's Blog at 8/31/2012 10:03 PM
That's a sad story, but you make sympathy difficult... if it's legal, it isn't stealing, and calling it that is dishonest. The problem seems more related to your great expectations; loss (or, more precisely, premature expiration) of unvested NQSOs & RSUs is SOP for terminations & layoffs, which is essentially what happened to you from the seller's (INTU) perspective. In the case of a sale, any special considerations (e.g. retention of unvested options) for employees who accept the transfer are essentially the buyer's concern rather than the seller's. Buyers may be motivated to sweeten the deal by negating any transfer-related losses to encourage employees to transfer, e.g., but that's at their discretion. Nothing has been stolen from you, rather legally binding agreements have been strictly followed - did you expect anything less? Yes, layoffs suck (I've been there), but they're a fact of life, and at least you have an opportunity to not join the ranks of unemployed. During a recession, you're unlikely to find unwarranted generosity in the corporate arena. If you're unhappy with the terms of your employment-at-will agreement, you could always start your own business. Your sense of entitlement, however, is unwarranted, and claims of theft are disingenuous at best.
agree with intuit_noob. i do not see why any company would have an obligation to grant you unvested stock. usually this is $$ that will vest over time after you have done more work for the company. seeing that you are no longer part of the company, why would they gran this? the burden is on the the buying company. if they do not treat their employees properly, then they will leave the company and the buyer would be losing out on the recent purchase. take this up with endurance. leave the company if you are unsatisfied.