• Rainforest completed its first ESOP buyback exercise in October 2023, buying back vested options from employees
• This was done on the back of EBITDA profitability through 2023, and raising a new round of $21.5m funding
• As part of its overall compensation approach and core-value of ‘Ownership Mindset’, all full-time employees at Rainforest are granted Employee Share Options
• Rainforest leveraged the Qapita platform to seamlessly offer and complete the ESOP buyback exercise
Rainforest announced that it has completed a significant ESOP buyback exercise from its staff. The first ever ESOP buy back by the company follows its recent fundraise and reaching the milestone of EBITDA profitability. Over 80% of Rainforest employees were eligible for the buyback and just under 35% chose to sell some of their ESOPs in the exercise.
One of the core values at Rainforest is ‘Ownership Mindset’ - making decisions and taking actions like a company owner would. To reinforce this core value, all full-time employees at Rainforest receive ESOP grants on joining, and are issued bonus ESOPs based on performance annually as well.
JJ Chai, CEO, and Co-Founder of Rainforest said “I’m glad to be able to offer the opportunity for our employees to get some liquidity from their vested ESOPs, despite being less than 3 years into our journey. We’re also grateful for the advice and support from the Qapita team, which made it easy to administer and execute this buy back”
Ravi Ravulaparthi, CEO and Co-founder of Qapita said “At Qapita, our mission is to make every equity owner count. To this end, we extend an equity management and liquidity program platform for equity owners and companies throughout their growth lifecycle. We are delighted to have partnered with Rainforest to execute their maiden ESOP buyback program with the help of Qapita Platform enabling liquidity to their employees.”
Rainforest has also expanded its ESOP pool to over 10% of the company recently, and plans to continue to deploy it to reward employee performance as well as to attract talent to operate and run its portfolio of brands. It also plans to continue offering buybacks periodically.
Rainforest is a digital-first house-of-brands that focuses on brands and products for the modern parent. We acquire, build and operate consumer e-commerce brands. Our mission is to fulfil the potential of our portfolio of brands, growing the brands with great products to delight parents worldwide.
Qapita is a market-leading equity management platform that supports 2,200+ public and private companies in managing CapTables and employee equity plans (ESOPs) globally. Qapita offers an end-to-end suite of equity management solutions for all stakeholders including CapTable management, ESOP administration, ESOP advisory, valuations, IPO readiness among others. Qapita also offers structured liquidity solutions for shareholders and ESOP holders in unlisted companies.