Key takeaways for retailers:
- Average pay and rewards fell
- Boardroom sensitivity to public perception
- Still few women on the list
- Fashion and online ups and downs
Majestic Wine boss Rowan Gormley, WHSmith chief Stephen Clarke and Tesco’s group chief executive Dave Lewis were the highest-rewarded retail executives last year, exclusive Retail Week analysis has revealed.
Particular circumstances influenced their rankings, with Gormley’s package including payments arising from the sale of Naked Wines, while Clarke met long-term incentive plan targets.
Burberry’s Julie Brown, who came fourth in the list, received compensation for incentives forfeited when she left her previous employer, medical technology specialist Smith & Nephew.
Here’s the list in full:
|Rank||Name||Role||Retailer||Financial year||Base salary||Benefits||Total package|
|2||Stephen Clarke||Group CEO||WHSmith||2015/16||550,000||4,694,000||5,244,000|
|3||Dave Lewis||Group chief executive||Tesco||2016/17||1,250,000||2,897,000||4,147,000|
|4||Julie Brown||Chief operating and financial officer||Burberry||2016/17**||143,000||3,809,000||3,952,000|
|6||Christopher Bailey||President and chief creative officer (CEO at the time)||Burberry||2016/17||1,100,000||2,431,000||3,531,000|
|7||Robert Moorhead||CFO and COO||WHSmith||2015/16||370,000||2,655,000||3,025,000|
|9||Peter Cowgill||Executive chairman||JD Sports||2016/17||756,000||2,006,000||2,762,000|
|15||Sebastian James||CEO||Dixons Carphone||2016/17||832,000||963,000||1,795,000|
|17||Steve Rowe||CEO||Marks & Spencer||2016/17||809,000||833,000||1,642,000|
|18||John Rogers||CFO, then CEO Sainsbury’s Argos||Sainsbury’s||2016/17||685,000||914,000||1,599,000|
|21||Angela Spindler||CEO||N Brown||2016/17||544,000||829,000||1,373,000|
|22||Helen Weir||CFO||Marks & Spencer||2016/17||590,000||663,000||1,253,000|
|23||Ray Kelvin||Chief executive||Ted Baker||2016/17||445,000||772,000||1,217,000|
|25||Lindsay Page||Chief operating officer||Ted Baker||2016/17||425,000||773,000||1,198,000|
|26||Andrew Harrison||Deputy CEO||Dixons Carphone||2016/17||558,000||622,000||1,180,000|
|27||Matthew Williams||CEO||Topps Tiles||2015/16||387,000||793,000||1,180,000|
|28||Patrick Bousquet-Chavanne||Executive director of customer, marketing and M&S.com||Marks & Spencer||2016/17||546,000||618,000||1,164,000|
|30||Katie Bickerstaffe||Chief executive, UK and Ireland||Dixons Carphone||2016/17||498,000||590,000||1,088,000|
|31||Graham Stapleton||Chief executive, Connected World Services (at the time)||Dixons Carphone||2016/17||467,000||585,000||1,052,000|
|32||Humphrey Singer||Group finance director||Dixons Carphone||2016/17||482,000||563,000||1,045,000|
|36||Brian Small||CFO||JD Sports||2016/17||264,000||577,000||841,000|
|41||Brian Brick||CEO||Moss Bros||2016/17||321,000||460,000||781,000|
|43||Robert Parker||CFO||Topps Tiles||2015/16||246,000||492,000||738,000|
|44||Jane Shields||Group sales and marketing director||Next||2016/17||412,000||323,000||735,000|
|45||Michael Law||Group operations director||Next||2016/17||412,000||313,000||725,000|
|47||Tom Joule||Chief brand officer||Joules||2016/17||335,000||384,600||719,600|
|49||Darren Bryant||CFO||Card Factory||2016/17||352,002||347,030||699,032|
|50||Jonathan Miller||CFO, then CEO||McColl’s Retail Group||2015/16||397,000||301,000||698,000|
|51||Karen Hubbard||CEO||Card Factory||2016/17||418,186||275,124||693,310|
|52||Michael Sharp||CEO (at the time)||Debenhams||2015/16||520,188||170,342||690,530|
|53||Mark Aylwin||Managing director, Conviality Direct||Conviviality||2016/17**||375,000||302,000||677,000|
|54||Ian Kellett||CEO||Pets at Home||2016/17||474,712||187,375||662,087|
|55||Mark Richardson||Chief operations officer||Ocado||2015/16||354,000||301,000||655,000|
|58||David Robinson||Managing director, Conviality Retail||Conviviality||2016/17**||304,000||302,000||606,000|
|59||Bill Barnes||Finance director (at the time)||DFS||2015/16||300,000||303,000||603,000|
|61||Craig Lovelace||CFO||N Brown||2016/17||342,000||239,000||581,000|
|62||John Roberts||CEO, then executive director||Ao.com||2016/17||445,000||127,804||572,804|
|63||Amanda James||Group finance director||Next||2016/17||360,000||211,000||571,000|
|65||Neill Abrams||Group general counsel||Ocado||2015/16||297,000||234,000||531,000|
|66||Martyn Gibbs||CEO||Game Digital||2015/16||446,000||80,000||526,000|
|67||Suzanne Harlow||Group trading director||Debenhams||2015/16||408,537||110,732||519,269|
|68||Steve Caunce||COO, then CEO||Ao.com||2016/17||395,000||116,904||511,904|
|71||James Crawford||Group CFO||Majestic||2016/17||194,000||306,000||500,000|
|72||Phil Maudsley||MD Express Gifts (now CEO)||Findel||2016/17||374,000||103,000||477,000|
|73||Dave Thomas||COO||McColl’s Retail Group||2015/16||276,000||165,000||441,000|
|74||Julian Dinkerton||Founder, product and brand director||SuperGroup||2016/17||408,000||19,497||427,497|
|77||Carol Kane||Joint CEO||Boohoo.com||2016/17||225,000||185,232||410,232|
|80||Mahmud Kamani||Joint CEO||Boohoo.com||2016/17||225,000||170,704||395,704|
|81||Stephen Marks||Chairman and chief executive||French Connection||2016/17||321,000||59,000||380,000|
|82||Tim Kowalski||CFO (at the time)||Findel||2016/17||296,000||65,000||361,000|
|83||Paul Eyre||CEO||United Carpets||2015/16||200,000||157,000||357,000|
|84||Ng Kwan Cheong||CEO||Laura Ashley||2015/16||262,000||92,000||354,000|
|85||Mark Gifford||CFO||Game Digital||2015/16**||292,000||52,000||344,000|
|86||Simon Fuller||CFO||McColl’s Retail Group||2015/16**||176,000||157,000||333,000|
|87||David Sugden||Executive chairman (at the time)||Findel||2016/17†||266,000||66,000||332,000|
|89||Ian Bowness||Finance director||United Carpets||2015/16||175,000||128,000||303,000|
|90||Deborah Grayson||Commercial director||United Carpets||2015/16||157,000||143,000||300,000|
|91||Angus Thirlwell||CEO||Hotel Chocolat||2015/16||235,840||52,558||288,398|
|92||Anthony Smith||CEO, then executive chairman||Shoe Zone||2015/16||250,000||36,338||286,338|
|93||Neil Williams||Chief operating officer||French Connection||2016/17||255,000||29,000||284,000|
|94||Peter Harris||Development director||Hotel Chocolat||2015/16||232,634||50,200||282,834|
|95||Nick Davis||CFO, then CEO||Shoe Zone||2015/16||162,657||101,304||263,961|
|96||Stephen Alldridge||Finance director||Bonmarche||2016/17||204,000||49,000||253,000|
|97||Matt Pritchard||CFO||Hotel Chocolat||2015/16||202,404||42,274||244,678|
|98||Matt Margereson||COO||Hotel Chocolat||2015/16||202,404||40,250||242,654|
|99||Charles Smith||Chief operating officer||Shoe Zone||2015/16||200,000||29,158||229,158|
|100||Mike Iddon||CFO||Pets at Home||2016/17**||155,615||50,842||206,457|
* Includes payments of £5.1m related to Naked Wines deal
** Joined during financial year
† Left during financial year
Average pay and rewards fell
Directors’ reward packages have frequently prompted controversy and this year’s AGM season brought concerns about Tesco boss Dave Lewis’ benefits, including a relocation package, and at Morrisons there was opposition to a planned long-term incentive plan.
The bigger picture is more nuanced, however, and average reward packages fell last year.
Lewis in fact took home 10.5% less last year than in 2015/16, when he received a bigger short-term bonus. His base salary stayed the same last year.
And across the top 50, both directors’ average base pay and average total package fell in the most recent year.
Average base pay was down from £546,847 to £526,245. The average total package reduced from £1,763,598 to £1,670,034.
Retail Week Prospect head of research Philip Wiggenraad says: “The average base pay was down because of some new executives who came on at a lower rate than their predecessors.
“Those new arrivals will also have to wait for their long-term incentives to mature, which brought down the average total package.”
Boardroom sensitivity to public perception?
As consumers’ wage growth fails to keep price with inflation, it may also be that company boards are increasingly sensitive to public perception of director pay.
A total of 32 directors received a total package in excess of £1m, similar to 30 who did so the previous year.
Most increases in directors’ basic pay were around the 2% mark.
Wiggenraad says: “I think that might reflect companies’ concern about being seen by consumers as being divorced from reality, but you have to realise that base pay only comprises on average 31% of the total reward packages for the 50 highest-paid executives.”
Still few women on the list
Among the top half of the list there are nine women – down from 10 last year.
The highest-ranked woman, and a new entry at number four, is Burberry chief operating and financial officer Julie Brown. Her total rewards were initially said to be worth £4,734,000, in Burberry’s annual report, including compensation for incentives lost when she left her former employer.
However, Brown waived 47,099 shares, worth £781,998.82. She has also waived 75% of her entitlement under Burberry’s three-year performance-related share scheme.
It means that, in total, Brown has voluntarily waived up to £2.4m of the £4.7m remuneration package agreed in July 2016.
Last year’s top-ranked woman, Kingfisher chief executive Véronique Laury, comes in at 16th compared to 14th last year.
Wiggenraad says: “The entire top 100 included just 16 women. That shows how much the higher echelons of retail are still the domain of men.”
Fashion and online ups and downs
The strong performance of SuperGroup and etailer Boohoo is reflected in the rise of executives there.
SuperGroup chief executive Euan Sutherland moves up from 18th to fifth, while Boohoo’s finance supremo comes in at 13th – linked to long-term incentives in each case.
Marks & Spencer chief executive Steve Rowe moved up from 30th last year, reflecting his promotion from his previous post as general merchandise director, to be ranked 17th on the list this time on a total package of £1,642,000. His predecessor, Marc Bolland was 13th last year and on £2,039,000.
Next chief executive Lord Wolfson, number three last year on £4,764,000 is down to 14th this year on £1,842,000, reflecting a much higher long-term incentive payment last year.
Altogether five pureplay executives – including Angela Spindler at N Brown, which has a negligible store presence – are among the highest-paid 50 executives.
Last year, there were six in total but four were from Ocado, where incentive schemes matured and chief executive Tim Steiner was number one. This year he has dropped to 29th as a result.
This data has been compiled by using the latest available annual reports of all listed UK retailers as of August 15, 2017. It lists executive directors only.
Benefits comprise a wide range of compensation such as pension payments, bonuses and performance-related pay.
The data is for the shown financial period and gives no indication of remuneration in the current financial year.
The list was compiled by Retail Week Prospect, an intelligence service offering insight and analysis on the UK’s retailers.
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