CEO COMPENSATION UP IN 2005
Top payments industry executives were paid well in 2005, with overall compensation up 42% despite a drop in salaries, according to CardLine sister publication Cards&Payments magazine. For an article in its June issue, Cards&Payments and Standard & Poor's analyzed 2005 compensation disclosed to the Securities and Exchange Commission from a cross-section of top public payments industry companies such as card issuers and processors. Median total compensation of 67 executives from 13 companies was $2.7 million, up 42% from $1.9 million in 2004. Median salary of those executives was $387,508, down 3% from $400,000 in 2004. The median bonus in 2005 was $446,744, up 28% from $349,667 in 2004. The top-paid executive in the survey was Capital One Financial Corp. Chairman, President and CEO Richard D. Fairbank, who in 2005 logged $249.4 million, virtually all from the value realized from stock options exercised. That's up from $56.7 million in 2004, also mainly from stock options exercised. Daina DiVeto, managing director of Card Resource Group, a Lynden, Ontario-based executive search firm, says she sees continued bonus growth. "Bonuses have started to notch up again," she says. "We've seen 33% bonus targets increased to 55%, and 60% bonus targets increased to 75%." But another industry recruiter says she saw more pressure on bonuses last year. "More bonuses are discretionary or are based on company performance," says Kathryn Trott, president of Woodlands, Calif.-based e-Trott Inc. "Therefore, you may have your best year ever, but if your company does not perform well, you can be left out of the bonus game."