back to article Violin Memory axes staff just before Christmas, gives CFO $150k bonus

Violin Memory is cutting staff while rewarding chief financial officer Cory Sindelar with a bonus to persuade him to stay for another two months. Merry Christmas, Silicon Valley style. Chief marketing officer Amy Love told The Register today: “Violin is resizing the company as part of its overall turnaround efforts. More news …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    I wonder how many people got axed to pay for the CFO's bonus?

    Most companies set fairly strict compensation budgets, especially if they are struggling. So I am thinking that 3-4 Violinistas got let go so that Mr. CFO could get his $150K bonus.

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: I wonder how many people got axed to pay for the CFO's bonus?

      This has happened before and it will happen again.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I wonder how many people got axed to pay for the CFO's bonus?

      They slashed 50% of staff and are being evicted from their Great America location. Rumor is they owe $120 m too.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I wonder how many people got axed to pay for the CFO's bonus?

        That is no rumor they owe bond holders 120MM

  2. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge

    Nothing to see here, move along.

    It's pretty standard Silicon Valley "circling the drain" behavior.

    Their share price is about $0.20, down from their IPO price of $9 three years ago.

    1. fredesmite

      Re: Nothing to see here, move along.

      wow .. that is a 70% increase from 13 cents! That should make the Bloomberg must buy list!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Perhaps he can turn the lights out, then.

    1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Perhaps he can turn the lights out, then.

      FTF8K: "...significant additional responsibilities recently assumed by him..."

  4. DNTP

    He's making out like a pirate

    Well, except that honest pirate officers only take bonus shares when their ships take profits, and they don't make their own crew walk the plank right before the ship sinks.

  5. Paul

    I feel sorry for Cory Sindelar, imagine having to scrape by with just $150,000 in the bank? I'm sure his family will have to cut back this christmas or something, maybe fly business instead of first.


  6. EveryTime

    This is Bad News.

    The CFO is the guy that knows the details of the financial situation. He's using his leverage to extract every last dollar from the company.

    What's the chance he'll work past Feb 1? About zero. What's the chance he'll do this in his next job? About 100%.

    From personal experience, if a turn-around does happen, the dedicated people that took a reduced or no salary will be lucky to have their previous salary restored, with no catch-up pay. Those that demanded a retention bump in pay because of the risk get to keep that as their new base salary.

    1. quxinot

      >What's the chance he'll do this in his next job? About 100%.

      That's my question in a nutshell.

      So you've started a company, or even run a long-existing company. Why would you choose from people with CxO experience from failed ventures? It's not like it's difficult to talk someone into making silly money to wear a tie, is it? Most startups go down the toilet, so experience doesn't count for much unless it's positive. Prospective executives that are established failures are better than the alternative somehow?

      I wish I could into this market without the customary MBA and lobotomy preparations.

      It almost makes you wonder if a company headed by a group of CxO's that were interested in playing the long game instead of how much loot they can carry away would do.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        CFO are gangsters with a tie

        You don't need to be a thug with a gun to steal and rip off people ... just be a MBA with a tie and a lawyer to screw people.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: CFO are gangsters with a tie

          You have no idea

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: CFO are gangsters with a tie

            Cory .. is that you?

  7. martinusher Silver badge

    Seems simple enough...

    Cory gets paid a couple of hundred K to lay off the workforce. Someone has to do it.

    1. sabroni Silver badge

      Re: Seems simple enough...


  8. Neo Darwin

    Lawsuits will start if not already

    This appears to be violination of something :)

    They should have started chap 11 prep long ago. They must have debt piling up from suppliers taxes, and benefits and probably customers wondering about who will support them -pushing for guarantors etc. All of that will push vio to chap 11 ... ( that is opening for buyers ( emc,pure, hp, etc) to pick up their customer install base to continue support and follow up with replacement and or upgrade units ) if that doesn't happen than Chap 7 (liquidate ). I recall the track record for these events is always just before xmas :(

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    $150k for two months work at Christmas?

    Sure beats being given a jelly of the month club membership.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Will help pay his weight watchers tab!

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Surprising how?

    None of the meat sacks who are getting the sack have the ear of the board.

    If you're replaceable don't be surprised when you are removed.

    Company loyalty and employee respect died years ago. Work for yourself or face getting fired at some point for restructuring reasons.

    This is not new information.

  11. DNTP

    Cory is that you?

    Last night, someone seems to have given a single downvote to every post prior to this one in a limited time span.

    Someone from Violin, maybe, who can't tolerate the proles poking fun at him despite making out like a bandit?

    1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Cory is that you?

      Such is life in the El Reg Zone!

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Loyalty is for suckers

    I've been in this business for almost 4 decades. Financially sound for the rest of my life but none of my friends ever became millionaires . This business started to die when scabs were brought over from India wearing the only pair of pants and shirt they owned and piled up in rooms to crank out a release while feed pizza with goat cheese. Never assume any company has it's employees as a core value. You are all disposable.

    Another example of the 1% wanta be class getting special privileges.

    1. bobajob12

      Re: Loyalty is for suckers

      What have Indians got to do with it? They are being perfectly rational economic actors. They are taking advantage of an opportunity offered by an employer to get out of their low-pay economy and limited prospects country and come and work for significantly more in the world's most advanced economy.

      If you have a beef with that, you should take it up with the US employers that choose it, and the craven Congress that allows it, not the poor schmoes just trying to support themselves and their families.

    2. MT Field

      Re: Loyalty is for suckers

      That's American companies for you.

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

  14. W4YBO

    This is a good time for "Griswold's Rant"...

    "Hey! If any of you are looking for any last-minute gift ideas for me, I have one. I’d like Frank Shirley, my boss, right here tonight. I want him brought from his happy holiday slumber over there on Melody Lane with all the other rich people and I want him brought right here, with a big ribbon on his head, and I want to look him straight in the eye and I want to tell him what a cheap, lying, no-good, rotten, four-flushing, low-life, snake-licking, dirt-eating, inbred, overstuffed, ignorant, blood-sucking, dog-kissing, brainless, dickless, hopeless, heartless, fat-ass, bug-eyed, stiff-legged, spotty-lipped, worm-headed sack of monkey shit he is! Hallelujah! Holy shit! Where’s the Tylenol?"

    Clarke Griswold - Christmas Vacation

  15. Howard Hanek

    I See That Mankind's Idols Still Require Human Sacrifice

    At least being cast into a fiery furnace was quick. Today, it's a slow, painful death the Idol's priesthood now requires, especially around the time of Christian Holy days. It must add a particular savor that's pleasing to their god.

  16. Winkypop Silver badge

    Forget the quality

    Feel the width!

  17. GeezaGaz

    Reminds of classic David Brent

    Bad News: Some of you are going to lose your jobs

    Good News: I've got a promotion

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I just hope

    That the employees who were booted out don't hire a van, hood up, grab Cory off the street, beat seven shades of shit out of him, then dump him somewhere cold and wet. That would be terrible wouldn't it?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I just hope

      don't forget the rest of the big guys while you are at it!

    2. MT Field

      Re: I just hope

      Because unfair violence always solves problems.

      Here in Europe we would meet him after work in the car park for fisticuffs. Then we'd go for a pint with him afterwards.

      1. IanMoore33

        Re: I just hope

        No - It won't solve anything .. it just makes your day knowing you made a pu$$ie cry after you broke his nose

        Remember - It is just business .

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