Carol Bartz’s Compensation Package Tops $47.2 Million

Yahoo's CEO takes more than Google, Microsoft counterparts in first year

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Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz may have a tough job, but this morning, it’s a rare person who’s arguing that she isn’t well paid for it.  A regulatory filing has revealed that Bartz received $47.2 million in compensation for 2009.

A number of different figures contributed to that final sum.  As you can see below, Bartz collected around $1 million by way of a base salary, $1.5 million in nonequity incentives, and then a whopping $42.1 million in terms of stock and options awards.  Along with $2.6 million in "other compensation."

Steve Ballmer, by comparison, took just $1.27 million in compensation for the fiscal year of 2009, while Eric Schmidt collected even less: $245,322.

This state of affairs has left Bartz with some fairly vocal critics.  Check any financial forum today, and you’ll likely see a lot of folks complaining about the performance of Yahoo’s stock.  Other individuals have also speculated about how many dismissed employees $47.2 million could have kept on the payroll.

Yahoo’s stock is up this morning, at least (by 0.18 percent compared to the Nasdaq’s 0.01 percent gain), which may be a small comfort to investors.

UPDATE: A Yahoo spokesperson wrote WebProNews to say with respect to Bartz’s compensation package, "While it was valued at $47 million, there was more than $42 million that was not actually realized in the year and it is not the amount she will realize. SEC rules require reporting the fair market value of stock grants and this method of calculating compensation reflects all the potential value of the long-term incentives Carol received when she was hired. Vesting of the large majority of options depends on whether the average closing prices for Yahoo! stock exceeds certain levels that range from 150 to 300 percent ($17.60 to $35.19) of the exercise price of the options for twenty consecutive trading days prior to January 1, 2013. Carol cannot sell any shares acquired by exercising this option until January 1, 2013."

Carol Bartz’s Compensation Package Tops $47.2 Million
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  • Guest

    Stock option grants do not equate to actual cash value, a there are always strings attached (as the Yahoo spokesperson said), and may not actually end up being realized. If she does her job well, she might get them, but if Yahoo tanks, she probably won’t end up with any at all.

    Just ask all those guys who were overnight millionaires back in the Dot Com boom around 1999 time frame, only to realize they really had nothing 3 years later (except a fat tax bill!).

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