A friend of mine is at a startup, and the startup is having a big exit. It is being bought by a large company. Everything sounds great, except... he has only unvested stock options and under the terms of the deal unvested stock options are not worth anything. Only vested options get any money, and unvested options are canceled.
He took a big pay cut to go to the startup, worked his butt off, and has been there just under a year. His options start vesting after one year. He is feeling sort of screwed.
My questions are:
- Is there anything he can do now to help himself get some kind of compensation for this exit?
- If he goes to another startup in the future, how can he prevent this from happening again?