Wal-Mart cut former CEO's pay 73 percent in 2013

AP News
Posted: Apr 23, 2014 7:06 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — The pay of Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s outgoing CEO fell 73 percent in 2013 because he received a lower performance-based bonus and he didn't get stock awards that are given in anticipation of future performance.

The world's largest retailer gave Duke, 64, a compensation package worth about $5.6 million, down from $20.7 million in the prior year, according to an Associated Press analysis of a regulatory filing Wednesday. The fiscal year ended Jan. 31 and Duke was replaced by Doug McMillon, head of Wal-Mart's international division, on Feb. 1.

McMillon received $25.6 million in pay for 2013.

Separately, Wal-Mart said former CEO Lee Scott won't stand for reelection to Wal-Mart's board at the company's annual shareholders meeting on June 6. The company said Scott's departure from the board is in line with other CEOs leaving. Chris Williams will also not stand for reelection after 10 years, per Walmart's corporate governance guidelines.

Wal-Mart Stores is facing difficulties on a number of fronts. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company's low-income shoppers in the U.S. are struggling with stagnant wages and rising costs. At the same time, Wal-Mart faces fierce competition from online competitors and dollar chains that offer convenience and lower prices.

The company also has image problems. Wal-Mart is being pressured to further increase its oversight of factory conditions abroad following a building collapse in a year ago in Bangladesh that killed more than 1,100 garment workers. And it faces criticism that it pays its hourly workers too little.

Duke, who had been CEO since 2009, received a base salary of $1.4 million and a performance based bonus of $2.8 million, down 35 percent from a year ago.

He did not receive any stock awards, compared with a hefty grant of $13.6 million in the prior year. The company said it generally gives equity awards to executive officers in January as part of their compensation for the upcoming year. Duke did not receive any as he retired.

Other compensation totaled $490,090, including retirement contributions and $144,586 for personal use of company aircraft.

For the year ended Jan. 31, Wal-Mart's net income after paying preferred dividends fell 6 percent to $16.02 billion. Revenue rose 2 percent to $476.29 billion.

The year included a key holiday quarter hurt by severe weather and slow spending. And the expiration of a temporary boost the government's food stamp program hurt Wal-Mart's grocery business.

Wal-Mart's results give insight into shopper behavior during the U.S. economic recovery. It accounts for nearly 10 percent of retail spending in the U.S., excluding autos.

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Katie Pavlich

The Associated Press formula calculates an executive's total compensation during the last fiscal year by adding salary, bonuses, perks, above-market interest that the company pays on deferred compensation and the estimated value of stock and stock options awarded during the year. The AP formula does not count changes in the present value of pension benefits. That makes the AP total slightly different in most cases from the total reported by companies to the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The value that a company assigned to an executive's stock and option awards was the present value of what the company expected the awards to be worth to the executive over time. Companies use one of several formulas to calculate that value. However, the number is just an estimate, and what an executive ultimately receives will depend on the performance of the company's stock in the years after the awards are granted. Most stock compensation programs require an executive to wait a specified amount of time to receive shares or exercise options.