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Top Engineer Leaving Stripe for $11bn publicly traded fintech

Since Stripe halved its valuation earlier this year, the allure of joining the payments giant has somewhat diminished. Stripe still offers massive salaries, but senior staff across multiple divisions are leaving for new challenges.

The latest to leave is Sheng Wang, a lead software engineer who's gone to Toast, an infrastructure fintech focused on the restaurant industry. He joins as a principal engineer after four years at Stripe and seven years at SalesforceIQ during which time he also founded a virtual coaching platform for the video game Hearthstone.

What makes toast an attractive proposition? Pay isn't close to what Stripe can offer but still respectable, the average salary for a level 4 software engineer is $304k according to Levels.fyi.

Toast is however publicly traded after an IPO back in 2021 which more than doubled its value. Though its value plummeted in 2022, it's currently worth $11bn remains higher than the $8bn valuation it had at launch.

Few fintech unicorns have launched public offerings in recent years with Coinbase, Adyen and Grab being the exceptions. For engineers less convinced by the allure of fintech in more troubled times, moving to a public company can be both a blessing and a curse. Your stock payments are a little more risky, but you don't have to wait for a multibillion dollar funding round to give you an opportunity to sell.

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AUTHORAlex McMurray Reporter

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