Skype Technologies has reportedly fired some of its top executives before its buyout deal with Microsoft was closed, a move that is said to reduce their payout.
According to a Bloomberg report, three anonymous sources who were familiar with the matter said eight top executives were laid off.
The departures included David Gurle, vice-president and general manger, Christopher Dean, head of consumer market business, Russ Shaw, vice-president and general manager, Don Albert, vice-president and general manager for the Americas and Advertising, Doug Bewsher, chief marketing officer and Anne Gillespie, head of human resources.
Also included in the axing list were Qik rollover executives Ramu Sunkara and Allyson Campa, said Bloomberg on its report citing unnamed sources.
The main reason for the separation apparently lies on Microsoft's intent to minimize the payout that it needs to make once the buyout has been formally completed, sources said. The move was largely influenced and approved by California-based Silver Lake, which maintains a 70 percent stake in Skype when eBay decided to scuttle its majority control of the company.
Microsoft's acquisition of Skype was approved last week by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. Microsoft said when it announced the deal that it expects to obtain all necessary regulatory clearances by the end of year.
Skype is Microsoft's largest acquisition to date, with a cash-only price of $8.5 billion. The deal was finalized on April 18th and signed on May 9th. According to a Microsoft statement one day later, Skype will become a new business division within Microsoft, and Skype CEO Tony Bates will assume the title of president of the Microsoft Skype Division, reporting directly to Ballmer.
Microsoft plans to incorporate Skype into a variety of platforms, including the Xbox and Kinect gaming devices, Windows Phone and other communications services it offers including Lync and Outlook. Skype offers voice and video calling over the Internet and is primarily used by consumers.