Microsoft pays Sinofsky not to work at these companies

Microsoft pays Sinofsky not to work at these companies
Microsoft is paying its former Windows and Surface team leader Steven Sinofsky a whopping $14 million in exchange for his consent not to work for companies like Google, Apple and Facebook.

The ‘ban’ on Sinofsky joining those companies extends until December 31, 2013, and as soon as next year starts, the experienced executive would be free to seek new employment. ‘Ban’ here is only a figurative way of explaining the situation. In reality, Sinofsky signed an agreement with Microsoft that would grant him a whopping $14 million in stock options. All of these spicy details were revealed in Microsoft’s annual K-10 filing with the U.S. SEC.

Here are the 7 companies that Microsoft prohibited Sinofsky from joining:

  • Amazon
  • Apple
  • EMC
  • Facebook
  • Google
  • Oracle
  • VMWare

Of course, we’ve heard before about secret ‘no poaching’ agreements between the behemoths of Silicon Valley, but now we are seeing a top level executive getting paid to abstain from working there after his employment has been terminated.

source: AllThingsD



1. xperiaDROID

Posts: 5629; Member since: Mar 08, 2013

Urgh...Steve Ballmer...He should change his name to Money Mortimer.

10. Credo

Posts: 749; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Lol ..... Best regards!

15. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Changing up the sig, are we? Have you noticed you're the only one in the comments (besides TROLL®™) with one?

17. CX3NT3_713

Posts: 2350; Member since: Apr 18, 2011

Lol forealz...... Bonjour!

22. roldefol

Posts: 4744; Member since: Jan 28, 2011

Hey, at least he changed it. "Greetz." was definitely wearing thin. Avec fromage, Rol de Fol, Esq.

2. nobelset

Posts: 270; Member since: Oct 17, 2012

Getting paid to not work... FML

3. Credo

Posts: 749; Member since: Apr 19, 2012

Put al that cash into Windows Phone if u want it to be competitive ..... It's like Microsoft doesn't know but Android is already on 4.3, when will Windows Phone 8.05 arrive??? 2014??? Shame on you Microsoft! And this comes from a Windows Phone user! I hope you read this ;-) Best regards!

4. pokharkarsaga

Posts: 551; Member since: Feb 23, 2012

He's the only lucky person on the planet getting paid after leaving the job.

5. alterecho

Posts: 1106; Member since: Feb 23, 2012

They are paying someone partly responsible for Surface and RT, both of which they admitted has been a huge loss, to not work at competing companies? They are actually doing the competitors a favor. And they can't hire someone to fix the the OS.

6. Chakra

Posts: 136; Member since: Dec 02, 2009

Hey Microsoft, where can I send my resume. I'll work for half his salary, and when I equally create a debacle, I'll only take half the payoff not to create similar debacles in other companies.

7. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Hi Steven, can we be friends.....

8. nlbates66

Posts: 328; Member since: Aug 15, 2012

let see, not prohibited from working for Samsung, HTC, LG or Sony, Problem? :)

20. cam-whore

Posts: 164; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

Yup, Sinofsky is all about innovation, they don't need someone who isn't a copycat. They'd rather hire someone who used to work from Xerox...

9. _PHug_

Posts: 482; Member since: Oct 11, 2011

Getting paid 14 mil to not work! This guy is a genius.

19. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

hey i would do the same thing.

11. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

Wow!!! Talk about American companies stupidity! CEO(S) that bankrupt companies and effect million of American workers lives get Million dollar golden parachutes when they exit Workers get simply 2 weeks pay for every year you worked at the company which is chump change. Executives who's plans are utter failure and cost the company almost a billion dollars leave and get paid millions not to work at competing companies. Normal rank and file worker makes a mistake, that doesn't cost the company 1/4 of what the exec did, gets fired and is escorted out like a criminal with his stuff in a box. This poor soul must file for a minuscule unemployment benefit then look for new work. However, the Exec, that cost the company almost a billion dollars, gets paid 14 million not to work at any other company. Now tell me there is not something wrong with the American corporation system? It may seem Draconian but I really think the government should step in and make Board of directors and CEO responsible for their companies failure and tie all compensation to their performance. Company takes a lost- no golden parachute of stocks or cash for anyone. In fact the only people to get compensate are the rank and file workers, who through no fault of their own, when the company goes belly up should get the millions divided among them as unemployment benefits instead of the tax payers picking up the tab, Guarantee you have a lot more successful company plans.

12. PhoneCritic

Posts: 1354; Member since: Oct 05, 2011

Sorry about the rant but thing like this just burn me up!! Just like the billions Google, Apple, Microsoft, Cisco, etc.. keep off shore to avoid paying taxes on. They take all the american manufacturing jobs ( and now programming jobs ) and ship them to china for cheap labor. They bring back their goods to America to sell at a premium. Guess what? we can't but their goods because we don't have Jobs!!! Republican, Democrat or independent. We all agree if an American company ( founded and incorporated in America held territory) then they need to pay their fair share of taxes. Congress should not ask them how much is fair but just like they tell me and you as individuals you pay this on this much - it should apply to these corporations as well. you don't pay you don't get to sell your goods in America and you incorporation are null and void. Your patents are not recognized either. Glad I'm not president because Steve Ballmer, Tim Cook, John Chambers, Googlels execs every multinational corporations board of directors etc.. would all be in a corporate Jail cell until the IRS got paid. lol

13. MartyK

Posts: 1043; Member since: Apr 11, 2012

It's going to be hard to do that since they own the people (Congress) who wrote the laws, not to mention you would have poor people (who don't own investment let alone companies) aka their lapdogs crying you're anti business anti American.. Etc etc, you know how this works, good try tho.

14. scarecrowsyn

Posts: 14; Member since: Sep 26, 2012

The article says "stock options". In other words, they've granted Steve the option to purchase stock at a set price. $14 million in options isn't worth anything unless the grant is at a lower cost than current market value, and it's worthless if he doesn't exercise those options. MS hasn't paid him anything, really, and they've only agreed to take a hit of $x per share IF he buys up to $14 million of specific stock.

16. antifanboy14

Posts: 68; Member since: Nov 26, 2012

14 million that could have been spent on the advancement of the windows phone OS. personally, i think it's about time they stop calling the OS by that name.

18. InspectorGadget80 unregistered

Now this is cool of him getting paid not too work. I would say pay me 16 billion dollars or higher.

21. crazymonkey05

Posts: 188; Member since: Nov 20, 2012

They forgot canonical hahaha that would hurt windows if he took a job over at conical....poor microsoft

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.