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Ford CEO’s pay rises to $17.75m for ‘mediocre’ year

Ford shares have recovered some lost ground this year, gaining about 10% through Thursday.

Ford Chief Executive Officer Jim Hackett’s compensation rose about 6% in 2018, a year the CEO characterised as “ mediocre by any standard” for the US automaker.

Hackett received $17.75 million in total compensation, up from about $16.7 million in 2017. He received $1.8 million in salary, $12.7 million in stock awards, a $2.59 million bonus and $617,710 in perks and benefits, according to a regulatory filing Friday.

Hackett, 63, is leading an $11 billion restructuring of Ford that involves slashing jobs, closing plants, updating an aging lineup, exiting the North American sedan market and pouring billions into electric and self-driving cars. Last year, net income fell by more than half, as Ford lost money in every region of the world other than North America, where the F-Series pickup drives profit. The company’s shares fell almost 39% in 2018 as Wall Street criticized Hackett for moving too slowly and failing to explain his turnaround plan.

In an internal memo sent in January, Hackett said Ford should have earned roughly double the profit it posted for 2018 and told employees to “bury the year in a deep grave.” The company slashed the CEO’s bonus for the year by 28%.

Ford shares have recovered some lost ground this year, gaining about 10% through Thursday. Hackett has been praised for the alliance talks the company is conducting with Volkswagen AG that have yielded an agreement to jointly produce commercial vehicles and could expand to include a partnership to develop electric and self-driving vehicles. Executive Chairman Bill Ford on Tuesday said Ford and VW “ fit together well.”

© 2019 Bloomberg L.P

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