Who is Australia’s highest paid CEO?
Royal Commission proceedings and declining public trust failed to dampen executive bonuses last year, with more than half of ASX100 CEOs receiving at least 70 per cent of their maximum entitlement, according to the latest analysis of CEO pay by the Australian Council of Superannuation Investors (ACSI).
ACSI chief executive Louise Davidson said, “The way bonuses are being handed out suggests there is a culture of entitlement whereby supposedly ‘at risk’ pay is not very risky at all.
“These payments occurred in a year when the Royal Commission was in full swing, revealing evidence that executives were not being held accountable for poor conduct, and in the wake of soaring ‘first strike’ votes against remuneration reports.
“Clearly, corporate Australia is not getting the message that bonus payments should be variable and awarded for stretch performance, rather than being fixed pay under another name. This is a failure of both discipline and leadership.”
ACSI’s research lends weight to APRA’s recent observation that, “there has been an absence of significant downwards adjustment to remuneration at executive level”,1 and highlights the fact that these issues extend well beyond the financial services sector.
Here are the top ten highest-paid CEOs, according to ACSI, based on realised pay in the 2018 financial year:
- Alan Joyce, Qantas Airways ($23,876,351)
- Nicholas Moore, Macquarie Group ($23,855,580)
- Michael Clarke, Treasury Wine Estates ($19,024,334)
- Bob Vassie, St Barbara ($13,246,088)
- Craig Scroggie, Next DC ($12,515,914)
- Sandeep Biswas, Newcrest Mining ($12,083,392)
- Brian Benari, Challenger Group ($11,696,001)
- Raleigh Finlayson, Saracen Mineral Holdings ($11,284,256)
- Andrew Bassat, Seek ($10,744,472)
- Colin Goldschmidt, Sonic Healthcare ($10,017,376).
What do you think of this level of remuneration? Should more be done to reign in executive salaries?