Ballmer Made $769M in Quitting

Because investors were so glad he was leaving
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 23, 2013 2:00 PM CDT
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer gives his presentation at the launch of Microsoft Windows 8, in New York, Oct. 25, 2012.   (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

(Newser) – Cheer up, Steve Ballmer. Sure, you had to make the fairly humiliating announcement that you were stepping down as Microsoft CEO sooner than you'd wanted to. But on the bright side, you made a lot of money in the process. Investors were so excited to see the backside of Ballmer that Microsoft's stock shot up on the news, AllThingsD reports. And given that Ballmer owns an estimated 333,252,990 Microsoft shares, that surge increased his net worth by around $769 million.

Of course, those gains look a little less impressive when you look over the full sweep of Ballmer's tenure. When he took over as CEO, Microsoft was worth $600 billion by market capitalization. Now, it's worth about $270 billion. InfoWorld, meanwhile, has a short list of possible successors, none of which are household names outside the tech industry. Its favorite is a current Microsoft VP named Tony Bates. (Read more Steve Ballmer stories.)

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