Scripps Networks CEO Could See $91.6M Golden Parachute In Sale To Discovery

Scripps Networks CEO Ken Lowe could enjoy a $91.6 million golden parachute from his company’s agreement to sell to Discovery Communications, according to an SEC filing today.

His package would consist of $20.0 million in cash severence, $37.4 million in equity, $9.1 million from pension enhancements, $174,605 in benefits, and a $24.9 million tax gross-up.

Scripps shareholders will have a chance to air their view of the payout in an SEC-mandated advisory vote on the golden parachute plan on a still unspecified date to consider the sale. The golden parachute was unanimously endorsed by the comapny’s board.

Lowe and other execs will collect their rewards no matter what the shareholders say.

In July, Discovery agreed to pay $11.9 billion in stock and cash and assume $2.7 billion in Scripps Networks debt for the programmer best known for HGTV, the Food Network, and the Travel Channel. Lowe plans to join Discovery’s board when the deal closes.

Lowe’s golden parachute benefits include “reasonable outplacement services” for 18 months, and up to $75,000 to reimburse his “reasonable legal expenses” if he has to try to enforce the agreement.

But for at least a year he won’t be able to compete against Scripps, or solicit its “employees, customers, vendors or advertisers.”  In addition, he can’t “disparage Scripps or its officers or directors.”

Lowe’s parachute is by far the biggest at the company. Still, COO Burton Jablin could walk away with a $34.9 million while Chief Financial and Development Officer Lori Hickok collects $11.9 million.

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