A Turkish tech mogul handed out $27 million to his staff after selling the company

Nevzat Aydın, CEO and living legend.
Nevzat Aydın, CEO and living legend.
Image: Reuters/Murad Sezer
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Yemeksepeti, an online food ordering service, achieved the dream of many startups on May 5, selling itself for $589 million to Delivery Hero, a German online food service. Yemeksepeti’s CEO, Nevzat Aydın, celebrated the success in an unusual way: by handing out bonuses totaling $27 million to his 115 employees.

Aydın told Hurriyet Daily News that the company wasn’t bound by contract to share revenues from the sale, but the employees deserved the acknowledgement and reward.

“We did this because if there is a success, we have accomplished it altogether,” he said.

Understandably, the act made the of CEO a bit of a rockstar among his former employees:

The bonus amounted to over $200,000 per person—a huge sum, especially considering the employees’ monthly salaries ranged between 3,000 and 5,000 Turkish liras (about $1,000 to $1,800). “There were emotions, because you affect the lives of the people. People can buy homes, cars,” Aydın said.

This type of reward is rare, but not completely unheard of. A US businessman similarly gave out $6 million to 570 employees recently after the sale of a company. He said he shared profits after a previous sale as well.

Yemeksepeti was started in 2000 with $80,000 of capital, and has raised $44 million in two rounds of funding. Aydın says the company now does over 3 million transactions a month.