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The company I worked for 20 years ago had given me stock options. When I resigned from the company, I had purchased the options that had vested with me. Subsequently bonus shares were allotted and my total holdings multiplied a few times in 5-6 years. After that I have not received any communication regarding the same.

2 years ago the company got acquired by another company and few months ago the acquiring company got acquired by another company. I had no communication of any of these events at the time they happened.

Subsequently I learnt of all these developments through an ex-colleague, that the vested shares of employees were paid in cash (only? - not sure).

Would like to know -

  1. Am I eligible for a payment, although it is delayed by 1.5-2 years? What are my rights ?
  2. In case I need to pursue this matter, whom should I contact - my old employer company (no contact information available) or the acquiring company ?

My employer company was privately held, unlisted company. I do not know the status of the acquiring companies though.

Thanks for any guidance.

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I had purchased the options that had vested with me

Re-Check this. Do you have the share certificates issued under your name. Assuming you have;

that the vested shares of employees were paid in cash (only? - not sure).

All shares [including vested shares of employees] can be forced to cash, it would be part of the deal between old and new company.

Am I eligible for a payment, although it is delayed by 1.5-2 years? What are my rights ?

Yes you are within your rights to claim the payment.

In case I need to pursue this matter, whom should I contact - my old employer company (no contact information available) or the acquiring company ?

The current acquiring company.

Ideally they should have a record of who owned how many shares in the first company, how they got translated into shares of second company, cash paid out of each share held in second company.

  • Thanks for your detailed response. Yes I have all the share certificates. – Anupama Aug 13 '15 at 4:12

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