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Zuckerberg gets one dollar on payday

Facebook founder joins the $1 salary club...


April 28, 2013 2:36 by

The $1 salary club has become a widely adopted symbolic gesture. A billionaire’s cliché, if you will. Steve Jobs, Apple’s late founder and CEO, notoriously popularised the trend when he accepted an annual income of $1 upon his return to the company in 1998. Companies have an obligation to compensate their employees, so working for the bare minimum is the next number to resort to.

In 2005, Google co-founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page – along with CEO Eric Schmidt – all reduced their yearly compensation to $1. And now, Mark Zuckerberg, the brain behind Facebook, the world’s most successful social network, has officially joined the club as well.

This move was revealed in the company’s IPO Filing at the beginning of this year, but only in a recent proxy filing, was it concretely confirmed, along with his decision to ‘forego any bonuses’. Last year, in addition to his $500,000 base salary, Zuckerberg received a whopping $266,101 bonus. That’s a lot to give up, but trust me; you can take back any sympathetic sentiments you may be feeling.

According to Business Insider, the 28-year-old billionaire exercised 60 million stock options when Facebook went public in May of last year. At the time, they were worth an approximate $2.3 billion – although the report adds that he sold half the stock to cover his tax bill. Currently, he’s still currently nesting another 60 million that can be exercised on November 7, 2015; at the same astonishingly low price of six cents.

On the other hand, Zuckerberg now sits on a massive loss of nearly $7 billion on paper. This is, of course, based on the 609.5 million shares of company stock he owned as of March 31. The company’s stock, since the IPO was completed last year, hasn’t closed above $38; a 29 per cent decline.

As far as public appearances and statements go, it’s always been apparent that the young entrepreneur strongly believes there’s more to life than money. He’s quite often made headlines for sprouting out seemingly noble statements like “we don’t wake up in the morning with the primary goal of making money, but we understand that the best way to achieve our mission is to build a strong and valuable company” and “we don’t build services to make money; we make money to build better services”.

He’s also insisted on numerous occasions that Facebook is free and always will be – although if you count recent developments like paying to promote your private posts to friends – then he’s sort of playing fast and loose with the word ‘free’.


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