At ArcSight, at least there’s the yacht…

February 15, 2008

images-21.jpegYesterday, ArcSight (ARST) went public, but didn’t manage to close above the $9 IPO price, ending the day at $8.78. This morning, it’s trading even lower. But don’t feel too bad for Chairman and CEO Robert Shaw. After all, he still has the yacht club and the company-paid airline tickets to get to his homes in Montana and Cabo San Lucas.

Though we missed this in the earlier S-1s, mostly because we don’t pay enough attention to them, footnoted intern Rohan Poojara caught it in this filing from yesterday. The list of Shaw’s perks, which also include an apartment in the Bay Area, a car, and a gross-up cost ArcSight $220K last year, or more than 50% of Shaw’s $400K in salary. The biggest chunk — just over $100K — was for the gross-up.

While the apartment and the gross-up aren’t that unusual, it’s the yacht club that really stands out. A quick scan of registration statements for the past year shows that Shaw is in a club of one: no other CEO of a newly public company is getting their employer to pick up their yacht club membership. A further search of proxy statements for all companies from the past year goes even further: no other company has disclosed paying for a yacht club for their CEO or any other top executive. The yacht club, we’re guessing, is in Cabo, since both Montana and Cupertino, where ArcSight is based, aren’t exactly yacht-accessible.

BTW — my friends at Docu-Drama have their own interesting find from ArcSight’s debut: the CIA’s venture firm, In-Q-Tel sold about 215,330 shares at the $9 offering price yesterday. In-Q-Tel still owns about 1 million shares.

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