By Barry Grey in the USA:
$129 million pay package for new Yahoo CEO
24 July 2012
Last week the corporate and media world was abuzz with the news that Marissa Mayer, an engineer and vice president at Google, had agreed to become CEO of rival Yahoo for the tidy sum of as much as $129 million over five years.
This is considerably more than the $102 million the city of Detroit said it would save when, the same week, its Democratic mayor, David Bing, unilaterally imposed an across-the-board 10 percent cut in city workers’ pay, along with drastic cuts in health care and hundreds of layoffs.
The obscene and absurd compensation package for Mayer—at a time when manufacturing workers are being told their new wage benchmark is $13 an hour or less—is but one more expression of the decay of capitalism and the decadence of the new aristocracy that presides over it. Nowhere are the avarice of the ruling class and its plundering of society more naked than in America.
What miracles has Ms. Mayer performed to merit such a reward? A graduate of Stanford University, the 37-year-old Silicon Valley executive’s signature achievement, it seems, is to have been among the first 20 employees of Google. When the firm went public in 2004, its initial public offering turned her overnight into the owner of $300 million worth of stock.
She used a chunk of her fortune to purchase a penthouse on the top floor of the Four Quarters Hotel in San Francisco, which remains one of her two primary residences, along with a mansion in Palo Alto. Mayer is, according to press reports, known for her lavish parties, political fundraisers for Barack Obama, and designer shoes and gowns.
No slouch when it comes to conspicuous consumption, she sports a bathroom ceiling covered by a Dale Chihuly glass installation. She is famous in certain circles for having once paid $60,000 at a charity auction to have lunch with Oscar de la Renta.
In a regulatory filing last Thursday, Yahoo disclosed details of its new chief executive’s compensation package.
Mayer’s annual base salary will be $1 million. She will receive as well an additional annual bonus of $2 million to $4 million. On top of that, she gets annual stock awards worth $12 million a year.
Then there is the one-time “make-whole” payment of $14 million for the stock she leaves behind at Google, plus a one-
time retention bonus of $30 million.
Mayer becomes the fifth CEO of the struggling Sunnyvale, California firm in five years. Her two immediate predecessors did not fare badly despite being fired, in one case for poor performance and in the other for false statements on his resume. Carol Bartz, who was sacked in September 2011, received up to $3 million in severance pay. Mayer’s immediate predecessor, Scott Thompson, was removed after only four months on the job, but walked away with $7 million in cash and stock grants.
Still, Mayer lags behind another telecom CEO, Timothy Cook of Apple, whose package calls for $378 million over ten years.
The executive-socialite sits on the boards of Wal-Mart, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Ballet and the New York Ballet.
Twenty-six giant US companies paid their chief executives more last year than they paid in tax, according to a study released yesterday by the US Institute for Policy Studies (IPS): here.
Best Buy (BBY) Defends Estimated $32 Million Pay Package for New CEO: here.