BT Group halves former CEO’s bonus after investor disquiet

May 23, 2019

(Reuters) – Britain’s biggest broadband and mobile provider BT Group said on Thursday former Chief Executive Officer Gavin Patterson had agreed to a halving of his annual bonus.

BT had said in December it planned to make changes to the way it decides management pay after some of its shareholders questioned Patterson’s bonus for 2018-19.

Investors had also complained after BT gave a more than 1 million pound ($1.3 million) bonus to Patterson in 2017-18, during which time the company’s stock tumbled 30%.

“The (pay) committee and Gavin agreed that a reduction of the total bonus outcome by 50% would be the right thing to do and in the best interests of all stakeholders,” BT said.

Patterson’s bonus for 2018-19 will now be 572,000 pounds compared with 1.3 million pounds a year earlier. His total salary for the year was 1.72 million pounds, BT’s annual report showed.

Patterson left BT at the end of January, handing over to Philip Jansen, a former Worldpay chief executive.

The telecoms giant had said a new leader was needed to restructure the company.

Patterson, who ran BT for almost five years, announced 13,000 job cuts last year in an attempt to get to grips with a host of problems including intense competition, an underperforming IT services unit, a huge pension deficit and criticism of its broadband plans.

But a failure to hit a revenue target and a forecast for no growth in profit for the next couple of years sent its shares to six-year lows.

(For a graphic on ‘BT Group Underperforms European Rivals’ click

(Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Mark Potter)

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