He was worth $4.1 billion while still in his 30’s.  As ambitious in his taste for the good life as he was in business, he went on opulent and extravagant shopping sprees that landed him a $35 million house in Manhattan, a mansion in the Hamptons, a $21 million pad in San Francisco, weeklong trips to The Maldives and a G650.

Then his planned IPO fell apart, investors headed for the hills, valuations crashed to earth, and Hollywood lined up to tell the story of this fall from grace. You’d think his story would have a sad ending. Think again.

Give Adam Neumann, co-founder and former CEO of WeWork credit for one thing.

He sure knows how to land on his feet! It certainly helps when you have a golden parachute strapped to your back.

Neumann’s attorneys and Japanese based SoftBank are close to a settlement agreement that would give pay Neumann $480 million for roughly 25% of his shares that he still owns in WeWork, CNBC reported.

SoftBank has been the primary investor for WeWork and if this deal goes down, they would acquire 10.5% of WeWork’s investors shares, netting them $1.5 billion.

The nearly $500 million payment to Neumann would be roughly half of what his original payout would have been, so it could have been much more expensive for SoftBank.

The total exit package Neumann had negotiated for himself was a staggering $1.7 billion when he stepped down from CEO in 2019. A $185 million consulting fee was supposed to be part of the deal, but Marcelo Claure, the Executive Chairman of SoftBank yanked that because he said Neumann “violated some of the parts of the consulting agreement.”

Details like this makes most people dream about failing this miserably.

Neumann has company in the 9-figure settlement club. Here’s a few other epic paydays executives have received in the past to walk away from a company.

Bob Nardelli:  $223,000,000

The former head of Home Depot, he had been with the company for only six years before striking it rich.

Ed Witacre:  $230,000,000

He was paid obscenely for walking away from AT&T.  He had served 17 years with the company, and included in his payout was a pension worth $160 million.

Bill McGuire:  286,000,000

A mishandling of company stock options was the demise of the former UnitedHealth CEO. He walked away with $286 million, and that was after paying a $7 million fine to the SEC and giving up an additional $620 million in compensation.

Lee Raymond:  $320,600,000

He left Exxon after 12 years. He actually left on good terms, and his payment was more of a reward for increasing revenues 500%.

Jack Welch:  $417,000,000

The former high profile CEO of General Electric was a rock star CEO who left on top. The company gave him Red Sox season tickets, an apartment in NYC and a private jet on top of the cash.

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