Discovery CEO David Zaslav achieved 92% of his qualitative goals for 2016, and 99.9% of the quantitative ones, the board determined as it lifted his annual compensation 14.9% last year to $37.2 million, the company disclosed today in its proxy statement filed at the SEC.
The package includes a $3 million salary, $15.1 million in stock awards, $11.1 million in option awards, $7.5 million in non-equity incentives, and $442,532 in other compensation. The last category includes $302,608 for personal use of the company jet, a $16,800 car allowance, and $54,326 for personal security services.
Discovery shares appreciated 2.7% in 2016. Revenues grew 1.6% to $6.5 billion while net income was up 15.5%to $1.2 billion.
Discovery shareholders will have a chance to voice their opinion about the compensation package in an advisory vote at the annual meeting, scheduled for May 18 at the company headquarters in Silver Spring, Maryland.
In another advisory vote, the company will ask shareholders to endorse a plan to just formally seek investor views about compensation once every three years. That, the company says, would “give our Board sufficient time to engage with stockholders to better understand their views about executive compensation and respond effectively to their concerns.”
The company known for its nature fare opposes a shareholder resolution to link executive pay to the company’s performance in protecting the environment. Although the board says it “agrees that sustainability is important,” it believes that the “existing executive compensation program promotes the best interest of our stockholders over time.”
Discovery also opposes a shareholder resolution to expand the diversity of board members. It “appears to have no minorities on its board,” supporters of the resolution say. It was all male until December when C-SPAN co-CEO Susan Swain joined. She’s now on the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee,
The company says it looks for “the most suitable candidates for director based on merit, without regard to gender, race, religion or ethnicity.”
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