Duolingo Executive Compensation Is Tied To Stock Price

April 5th, 2023 - Kevin

In the IPO S-1 documents, we can see that the executive compensation is tied to certain stock price milestones. Over the next 10 year period, if the stock price reaches a certain multiple of the IPO price, then they’ll be awarded a certain number of shares (PSU stands for performance-based restricted stock units).

Duolingo Executive Compenstion PSU Table

We can clearly see why the CEO and CTO are pushing the company towards maximizing revenues given this incentive scheme. Maximizing revenues increases stock price which increases the number of shares they own. I don’t blame them, because they’re maximizing their individual wealth, but the overall result is likely a worse language learning product.

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