Employee Equity: How Much?

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li


The most common comment in this long and complicated MBA Mondays series on Employee Equity is the question of how much equity should you grant when you make a hire. I am going to try to address that question in this post.

First, a caveat. For your first key hires, three, five, maybe as much as ten, you…

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Employee Equity: Vesting

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li


We had a bunch of questions about vesting in the comments to last week’s MBA Mondays post. So this post is going to be about vesting.

Vesting is the technique used to allow employees to earn their equity over time. You could grant stock or options on a regular basis and accomplish something similar, but that has all sorts of…

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Employee Equity: Restricted Stock and RSUs

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li


For the past six weeks, we’ve been talking about employee equity on MBA Mondays. We’ve covered the basics, some specifics, and we’ve discussed the main form of employee equity which are stock options. Today we are going to talk about two other ways companies grant stock to employees, restricted stock and restricted stock units (RSUs).

Restricted stock…

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Employee Equity: Options

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li

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A stock option is a security which gives the holder the right to purchase stock (usually common stock) at a set price (called the strike price) for a fixed period of time. Stock options are the most common form of employee equity and are used as part of employee compensation packages in most technology startups.

If you are a…

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Employee Equity: Appreciation

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li
When you start a company, on day one the stock is basically worthless. There are some exceptions to this rule such as a spinoff company where Newco is getting some valuable assets day one. However in the vast majority of cases, the value of a startup on day one is zero.One of the objectives of an entrepreneur is to steadily increase…

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Employee Equity

Posted on by Fred Wilson & Jason Li

033 - employeeequity

One of the topics I get asked about most on MBA Mondays is “options.” But options are only one form of employee equity. I am going to do a series of posts on this topic over the next month of MBA Mondays. I will start by laying out the logic for employee equity, going over some target ownership levels, and describing…

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