Today marks the end of an era spanning almost 100 years as Time Inc is absorbed by Iowa based Meredith Corporation. Tomorrow, Meredith’s logo will replace Time Inc’s logo across its offices and the company’s four top executives, CEO Rich Battisa, COO Jen Wong, comms boss Greg Giangrande and CFO Sue D’Emic will all exit with a combined severance of $34.4 million in stock, cash and bonuses. Now while its not out of the norm for top execs to walk away with hefty severance packages especially after the sale of the company they lead, it almost always sends a tone deaf message to lower level employees, you know the ones who are actually in the trenches, that their value to the company is only worth two to four weeks pay. It also sends the message that Mr. Battista and his underlings believe they did so great that they deserve these multi-million dollar payouts. This all on top of the very tone deaf “O Caption” tribute video some tone deaf Time Inc employees produced for Mr. Battista which leaked to Youtube then taken down after Time Inc filed a copyright claim. Probably after realizing how horrible of an idea it was.
To put it short, Time Inc goes to the grave on a tone deaf note. It is no secret that their will be many jobs eliminated as Meredith integrates Time Inc’s brands and sell off others. This is normal when two companies merge and there are redundancies and money needs to be saved. Unfortunately for those employees and the many before them, they didn’t and won’t have the luxury of walking away with millions that they can put in a bank and sit home and live off the interest. Mr. Battista, Ms. Wong and the other execs are no doubt talented and did try their best to turn the company around which is deserving of the nice severance packages, but it looks bad and isn’t sitting well with many inside the company.
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