FTSE 100 chief executives’ pay rose by 23% in 2017, and the mean package was worth £5.7m a year, despite efforts to curtail executive excesses following the financial crisis, a report from the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) shows.
Fashion retailers in the FTSE 100 list include Burberry, Marks & Spencer and Next. Although Christopher Bailey’s pay in his final year at Burberry rose from £1.89m to £3.5m, M&S boss Steve Rowe and Next’s Lord Wolfson both received reduced packages compared with previous years.
Rowe’s remuneration fell from £2m in 2016 to £1.6m in 2017. His 2018 pay has fallen again, to £1.1m, after M&S slashed directors’ pay. Lord Wolfson took home £4.3m in 2016, and £1.8m in 2017.
The CIPD says the mean salaries for all working in the UK has grown by 2.9% to £29,009, meaning it would now take a UK worker 195 years to earn the mean annual FTSE 100 CEO reward package.
Excluding some large payouts, the median chief executive pay rose by 11% to £3.9m in 2017, compared with £3.5m in 2016.
Peter Cheese, chief executive of the CIPD told Sky News: “Despite increased investor activism and the planned introduction of pay ratio reporting, the evidence suggests that very little is changing when it comes to top pay in the UK.
“It’s disappointing to see that CEO pay has held up in the face of increasing pressure when average pay across the workforce has barely shifted in recent years.
“Given the ongoing issues of trust in big businesses and a push for greater transparency, it really is time businesses and boards put greater scrutiny on high pay, and that they think much more objectively about what they are rewarding CEOs and how.”