Savvis executives could see cash windfall from CenturyLink deal

CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) may still be waiting to get final approvals to complete its purchase of Savvis (Nasdaq: SVVS), but a number of Savvis' top management team members could rake in millions even if they leave willingly or are fired a year after the deal closes.

Savvis Chairman and CEO James Ousley, according to a proxy statement filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, could receive a compensation package that would be worth up to $28.86 million if Savvis decides to fire him "without cause" or he "voluntarily resigns for good reason."

Barely three weeks after it closed its acquisition of Qwest, CenturyLink announced its intention to acquire Savvis for $2.5 billion. As part of deal, CenturyLink will also take on $700 million in net debt.

While CenturyLink has not drawn up formal employment agreements with members of Savvis' management, the ILEC believes it will finalize employment agreements prior to the close of the deal.

In addition to Ousley, the so-called "Golden Parachute Compensation" clause applies to other Savvis management team members including: Gregory Freiberg, senior vice president and chief financial officer (estimated comp/benefits: $7.21 million); William Fathers, president ($9.33 million); Jeffrey Von Deylen, senior vice president, global operations and client services ($3.85 million); and James Mori, senior vice president, America sales ($4.47 million).

However, the proxy statement made it clear that the compensation amounts for each Savvis executive "are estimates based on multiple assumptions that may or may not actually occur."

For more:
- Channel Partners has this article

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