There are a lot of different ways to express just how massive is the payout Yahoo is bestowing upon Henrique De Castro, the chief operations officer fired this week by CEO Marissa Mayer after only 15 months on the job.
You could, for instance, point out that, at $109 million, De Castro earned about $244,000 for every day he worked for the internet giant. (That’s including weekends. Despite Kara Swisher’s report that De Castro had “disappeared from the scene” in his last few months at Yahoo, we’re going to give him the benefit of the doubt and assume that, like most executives on his level, he brought work home on the weekends.)
You could note that it’s more than all but a handful of people made from the two biggest consumer-internet transactions of 2013, Twitter’s IPO and Tumblr’s sale to Yahoo. In fact, $109 million is almost exactly the present value of the shares held by Twitter’s president of global revenue, Adam Bain.
Since 2000, 21 CEOs have received so-called golden parachutes worth $100 million or more, according to a 2012 report by GMI, a research and ratings firm that monitors corporate governance. (I’ve asked GMI for an updated data set.) The most lucrative was a $417 million walk-away package awarded to GE’s Jack Welch in 2001.
Although not a CEO, De Castro’s parting gift exceeds those given to XTO Energy’s Bob Simpson ($103.5 million) and Viacom's Tom Freston ($100.8 million). Only Freston spent less time on the job than De Castro, at nine months, but that’s misleading, as he had been with the company for years as CEO of MTV Networks and then co-president of Viacom with Les Moonves prior to the company’s split into two. De Castro, on the other hand, was at Google before Mayer poached him in 2012.