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The Pay Check: Sundar Pichai's pay hike as Alphabet CEO; Netflix execs' 2020 pay

S&P Global Market Intelligence's regular look at executive compensation in the U.S. technology media and communications industries.

Top news

* In recognition of his expanded role as CEO of Alphabet Inc. and Google LLC, the company increased Sundar Pichai's salary to $2 million, effective Jan. 1, 2020.

Pichai was granted an award consisting of two tranches of performance stock units with a target value of $45 million each. The executive was also awarded restricted stock units worth $120 million and a transitional award of $30 million of restricted stock units. The awarded stock units consist of both performance-based and time-based equity, vesting from 2020 through 2022. It also include a one-time transitional grant of time-based restricted stock units vesting during 2020.

* Netflix Inc.'s board established the annual salaries and stock option allocation for 2020 for certain of its executives. Chairman and CEO Reed Hastings will receive an annual salary of $650,000. Hastings was also granted stock options worth about $34.0 million. Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos' 2020 compensation consists of $20.0 million in salary and stock options worth $14.7 million. Chief Product Officer Greg Peters will take home $12.0 million in salary. The product chief will be granted stock options worth about $6.9 million. CFO Spencer Neumann will pocket $6.1 million in salary and take home $5.5 million of stock awards.

* Nielsen Holdings PLC promoted Christopher Taft to senior vice president and corporate controller. The company increased Taft's annual base salary to $350,000 from $300,000 and his target annual cash incentive bonus to $150,000 from $125,000, according to an SEC filing.

Nielsen also appointed Laurie Lovett chief human resources officer, effective Jan. 13, 2020. She will be entitled to an annual base salary of $500,000, target annual cash incentive bonus of $500,000 and the grant of an equity award of restricted stock units with a grant date fair market value of $1.0 million.

* Liberty Media Corp. entered into a new employment agreement with President and CEO Gregory Maffei, the president and CEO of each of the companies. The employment agreement provides for a five-year employment term, beginning Jan. 1, 2020 and ending on Dec. 31, 2024. Maffei's initial annual base salary will be $3 million, with no contracted increase. Maffei also received a one-time cash commitment bonus of $5 million. The aggregate target value for Maffei's annual cash performance bonus will be $17 million for each year during the term of the employment agreement. The aggregate grant date fair value of Maffei's annual equity awards will be $17.5 million for each year during the term and will be comprised of awards of time-vested stock options, performance-based restricted stock units or a combination of award types.

In other compensation news:

* Otelco Inc. President Richard Clark, who will also be appointed CEO and elect a director of the company following the departure of Robert Souza, will be paid an annual base salary of $350,000 as well as an annual bonus. Clark was not appointed as CEO of the company for a fixed term of office, but rather will hold such position until a successor is named.

* E.W. Scripps Co. inked a new employment agreement with President and CEO Adam Symson. Symson's annualized base salary will be $1.2 million. The chief executive will have a target annual incentive opportunity of at least 100% of his annual base salary and will be entitled to a target long-term incentive program opportunity of at least $2.7 million for fiscal 2020.

* Kevin Bostick, who replaced Luc Grégoire as CFO of DHI Group Inc., will be paid an annual base salary of $380,000, with an annual target cash bonus of 60% of his base salary. Bostick will also receive a grant of shares of company restricted common stock with a value of $150,000. Grégoire, meanwhile, will be entitled to certain payments and benefits, including a lump sum payment equal to $380,000.

* In connection with her appointment to Alphabet's board, Frances Arnold will be granted an initial equity award of $1.0 million in the form of the company's restricted stock units. Following each of Alphabet's annual stockholder meetings, Arnold will also be eligible to receive the company's standard compensation arrangement for non-employee directors, including an annual $350,000 restricted stock units grant and an annual $75,000 cash retainer.

* The compensation committee of Emmis Communications Corp.'s board awarded bonuses to the company's executive officers. This included a bonus of about $2.63 million for Chairman, CEO and founder Jeffrey Smulyan, $1.28 million for President and COO Patrick Walsh and $637,500 for CFO and Treasurer Ryan Hornaday.