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Should I stay or should I go?

According to the proxy filed by Symantec (SYMC) yesterday, there’s no need to choose.  That’s because the proxy disclosed that Symantec, in conjunction with its acquisition of Veritas for $13.5 billion last year agreed to pay Veritas executive Gary Bloom a sign-on incentive bonus of $5 million, which was payable in three equal installments on the 6-month, 12-month, and 18-month anniversaries of the closing of the merger, so long as Bloom was still a Symantec employee on those dates. 

Bloom apparently decided to take the money and run — he collected the first $1.66 million sign-on payment, then resigned from Symantec just a year after the merger.  Bloom then became eligible for severance benefits of $3.5 million, including salary continuation payments of $1,5 million, a lump sum target bonus payment of $1,15 million, and an additional lump sum payment in the amount of $831,781 representing the pro-ration of Bloom’s $1,15 million target bonus for the portion of the company’s 2006 fiscal year.

Of course, it’s not too hard to figure out why Bloom left. As the WSJ pointed out last Thursday (story behind wall), the merger between Symantec and Veritas hasn’t exactly been smooth sailing. According to the article, Symantec has been losing customers and the stock is down more than 50% since the deal was announced in late 2004.