Ogilvy + Mather, Pulse + PPR Boss Paid “Obscene” $83M Salary
According to new financial documents the boss of WPP the owner of several Australian PR Companies who handle several technology clients including Toshiba, Microsoft, Netflix as well as clients such as AAMI, Qantas and BMW was paid a staggering $83 million dollars last year despite the Company witnessing a 3% fall in revenue.
One major Ogilvy + Mather client who we contacted in Australia said “If that is what he is seriously being paid we need to seriously re think our PR fees this is obscene”.
WPP has described his massive salary as a long-term incentive plan and bonus, plus a short-term bonus top up, pension payments and other items.
WPP is the world’s biggest advertising company who also owns George Patterson in Australia.
Not only are Ogilvy + Mather clients upset at the salary top up so are shareholders in the advertising and PR Group.
The UK Guardian newspaper said WPP has continued to suffer shareholder rebellions over Sorrell’s pay since the company scrapped the contentious LTIP, which has two years to run. Last year’s pay is likely to trigger unrest among some investors uneasy about his earnings at WPP’s AGM in June.
More than 18% of votes at last year’s AGM were cast against WPP’s pay policy.
The latest salary top up takes Sorrell’s earnings over the past 11 years to about $361M Australian dollars or $32 Million dollars a year.
. His biggest payday was in 2004 when he received $102 Million dollars.
Luke Hildyard, head of research at High Pay Centre, said: “He built the company up but he got his reward for that when the company was floated so he should be treated no differently from any other FTSE chief executive. It’s an extraordinary amount of money.”
In the annual report, Sir John Hood, who took over as chairman of WPP’s pay committee last July, defended Sorrell’s pay.
Hood wrote: “The committee expect the primary area of focus for share owners and the broader media in 2015 to be the single figure for Sir Martin Sorrell. This is largely the product of exceptional performance delivered over the last five years, driving the vesting of the 2010 long-term incentive award and the increase in your company’s share price.”