If you’ve got a problem with executive bonuses in these chastened times, look no further than Next CEO Lord Wolfson for a good vibe. He has decided to give his £2.4m bonus to the 19,400 staff who have been with the firm since 2010 as a windfall worth 1% of their salary.
Wolfson sent out an email to staff saying that it was a ‘gesture of thanks and appreciation from the company for the hard work and commitment you have given to Next over the past three years and through some very tough times.’
Wolfson was entitled to the bonus as part of a share-matching plan that began back in 2010, but he says that given the company’s share price has almost doubled since the scheme began, his award has grown to be ‘more valuable than I could possibly have expected.’
He’s hardly out of pocket though: he still gets a salary of £714,000, and has received £3.6m from other bonuses and performance-related pay arrangements. In total, even after that bonus has been shared out, he still gets a £4.6m pay packet. That’s a rise of 13% compared with the previous year, too.
Still, with good grace, he added: ‘I remain very grateful for the way in which everyone has helped to navigate our business through this recession.’