BHP Billiton boss took home £10m in last year

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Marius Kloppers, the former boss of mining company BHP Billiton, received $16m (£10m) in his last year at the company and could receive a further £9.3m over the next five years from outstanding bonus awards of shares.

The $16m handed to Kloppers – who officially leaves the world's biggest miner at the end of the month – was largely made up of $10m from long-term bonus schemes that reached maturity.

The annual report shows that in the previous financial year he had cashed in another bonus share scheme worth £4.7m.

The annual report is published before next month's annual meeting, where shareholders have a nominated as a new board member Ian Dunlop – whose election the company is opposing. Shareholders will also vote three times on pay policies – on the remuneration report, a new long-term incentive plan, as well as on any awards of shares to Kloppers' successor, Andrew Mackenzie.

The former chief executive will receive only the 504,000 shares he has outstanding from previous years' bonus awards if the company attains certain performance targets over the next five years.

Kloppers handed the reins to Mackenzie in May and the company's annual report confirmed earlier statements from April that the Glaswegian would be paid 25% a year less than his predecessor.

Kloppers resigned in February after the company reported a 58% fall in profit caused by writedowns in its aluminium business.

Mackenzie, whose salary is $1.7m a year compared with the $2.2m of his predecessor, has now moved to the company's headquarters in Melbourne from the London office where he was based and received a one-off £400,000 in relocation allowances. He also had his signing bonus, handed to him when he joined in 2008 to run one of the divisions, reduced by £3.8m to £4.5m.

For the first time the company used its discretionary powers to reduce payouts from long-term incentive awards, even though the directors had hit the performance criteria by outperforming their rival's total shareholder return. Even so, because BHP Billiton provided a negative return to shareholders, the payouts were cut by 35%.

"This is the first time the committee has exercised its discretion to reduce vesting under the plan. In so doing, it took into account a range of factors, including the negative total shareholder return over the performance period that shareholders have experienced. It also considered the total remuneration of the executives," John Buchanan, chairman of the remuneration committee, said.

Powered by article was written by Jill Treanor, for The Guardian on Wednesday 25th September 2013 19.52 Europe/London © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010


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