Last year I had a Say on Pay proposal at Schlumberger, which received 39.8% of the votes. I tried to send a message that companies can’t hide, even if they meet in the Netherlands Antilles.
Apparently, they can. Schlumberger got no shareowner proposals in 2010. I haven’t seen much in the way of voting advice, so I checked the voting at ProxyDemocracy.org and voted with CalSTRS using MoxyVote.com. Thanks to these sites, we’re empowered… at least a bit. CalSTRS is withholding votes from Gorelick, Lajous, and Marks. As reported by The Corporate Library,
Schlumberger CEO Andrew Gould’s pay package is the highest among the 75 S&P 500 companies for which we’ve processed proxies so far this year. Last year, Gould realized a total of nearly $51 million in compensation, including a $2.5 million base salary and nearly $46 million in profit from the exercise of market-priced stock options, which vested without a performance requirement. For that money, at the national average gas price of $2.57 in August 2009, Gould could have bought more than 19,832,868 gallons of regular gasoline. If he used them to drive a Toyota Prius getting 50 miles to the gallon, he could have driven to the moon and back more than 2,075 times. Comp committee members Jamie Gorelick, Adrian Lajous, and Michael Marks apparently want to keep those options flowing: in 2009 Gould was awarded 680,000 stock options, more than twice the award granted in 2008. Over the last three fiscal years, he has received more than 1.4 million options and has profited more than $113 million from the exercise of over 2.7 million options. (Astronomical Pay: Schlumberger and Smith Acquisition, 3/22/2010)
Next up for me is Citigroup. Voting ends 4/16/2010. So far, there are no votes recorded or recommended at either ProxyDemocracy.org, CalPERS or MoxyVote.com. However, there are plenty of proposals from shareonwers, several of which look very reasonable.
The Board’s Role at Annual Shareholders Meetings at This Week in the Boardroom: 4/01/10 also mentioned that sites like MoxyVote.com may be changing corporate and board dynamics. I know its changing my behavior.
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