Monster CEO’s Severance: More Silver Than Gold

Sal Iannuzzi

As golden parachutes go, color former Monster CEO Sal Iannuzzi’s severance package silver.

His departure from the job he held since April 2007 was announced Tuesday. He was replaced by Tim Yates, who previously served as Monster’s CFO and executive vice president before retiring last year.

Depending on the value of Monster’s stock on June 30, 2015, Iannuzzi’s last day as a Monster employee, he could leave with a severance worth more than $23 million. That amount is based on the company’s April 24 proxy statement and the November 6 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Most of the $23 million comes from the value of Iannuzzi’s stock grants, which the proxy statement valued at $7.13 a share. At today’s closing price of $4.28, Iannuzzi’s severance would be somewhat larger than $15.6 million. As large as that is, it’s well below the national average of $30 million, as calculated by corporate turnaround consultants Alvarez & Marsal. The firm’s numbers were based on payouts to executives where there was a change in control of the company, such as through a sale.

Sal Iannuzzi severanceBecause his separation agreement with Monster treated his resignation as “a termination without cause,” Iannuzzi gets to keep his equity awards, which, the 8-K filing discloses, all vested on November 4. (Monster closed that day at $4.17). Those amounted to at least 2,250,000 restricted stock units and 343,168 shares of stock, according to the proxy statement.

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In addition, Iannuzzi gets:

  • A $2 million payout, subject to review by a committee of the Board of Directors;
  • Up to $20,000 for personal tax advice;
  • Medical coverage for he and his wife until they become eligible for Medicare — in less than five years for Iannuzzi — and thereafter, the company will pay for supplemental Medicare coverage for life;
  • The use of a car service until June 30.

As CEO, Iannuzzi was paid $1.25 million (he got a raise last year) plus benefits, bonus, and options. In 2013, his total realized pay came to $2.83 million, including the value of vested stock.

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

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