Dear SaaStr: What happens to employees after your startup gets acquired?

It varies — a lot.  But as a rule:

  • Top engineers will all be given retention packages, extra money / RSUs / options designed to keep them for 2-4 years.
  • All engineers and product people will want to be kept.

Then, either:

  • They’ll want to keep everyone for a while; or
  • They won’t see the value in keeping much of sales, marketing, finance, etc. for anything longer than a transition period, and either won’t agree to hire all of them, or will transition them out post-acquisition.

It’s not always a big, clear win for all of the team.  Do what you can to make sure it is.


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