Our City analyst assesses key talking points for three FTSE 100 companies as the annual shareholder meetings loom.
The recruitment of a new Persimmon (LSE:PSN) finance boss on a salary 26.8% higher than his predecessor’s has the potential to be a flashpoint at the housebuilder’s AGM.
Jason Windsor is to get £675,000, in line with his pay at current employer Aviva but substantially higher than the level enjoyed by long-term incumbent Mike Killoran.
Persimmon says the arrangements are necessary to attract a high-quality candidate, but voting agency Glass Lewis disagrees and has recommended that shareholders vote against the remuneration report at the AGM later this month.
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Changes at the top will also be the focus at two other forthcoming AGMs, with Jennie Daly of fellow housebuilder Taylor Wimpey (LSE:TW.) due to take over from long-term chief executive Pete Redfern at the conclusion of the company’s meeting on 26 April.
Meanwhile, Anglo American (LSE:AAL) boss Mark Cutifani is stepping aside after nine years in the role, with Duncan Wanblad taking over after the mining giant’s AGM on 19 April.
When: 2.30pm, Tuesday 19 April.
Where: The QEII Conference Centre, Broad Sanctuary, Westminster, London SW1P 3EE.
How to participate: The AGM will be held as a hybrid meeting for the first time, with shareholders invited to join physically at the venue or virtually via the Lumi platform. Votes in advance of the meeting should be made by returning a proxy form by 2.30pm on Wednesday 13 April. More details on the AGM can be found .
Who’s in the chair? Stuart Chambers, the former chief executive of Pilkington and Nippon Sheet Glass. He previously served as chairman of Arm Holdings and Rexam and has led the Anglo American board since November 2017.
How did the company do in the year to 31 December? Underlying earnings more than doubled to $20.6 billion (£15.8 billion), reflecting commodity prices and strong production within platinum group metals, the De Beers diamonds operation and Kumba iron ore business. Shareholder returns worth $6.2 billion (£4.75 billion) include a final dividend of $1.18 a share and a special dividend of 50 cents a share, which together amount to $2.1 billion (£1.6 billion) and will be paid on 26 April.
How have shares performed? Up 25% to 3,016p (3,978p on Thursday).
How much is the boss paid? Mark Cutifani, who steps down from the board at the AGM after nine years as chief executive, got a total remuneration package worth £9.8 million. This figure included his salary of £1.4 million, plus £2.2 million from a bonus scheme after achieving 75% of the maximum opportunity. Long-term incentive awards granted in 2019 vested at 90% of their total, which generated a further £5.7 million.
What’s the new boss due to be paid? Duncan Wanblad, who has been in charge of strategy and business development at Anglo American since 2016, will be on a base salary of £1.25 million, about 13.2% lower than his predecessor. The South African will also receive a pension contribution worth 15% of base salary.
What’s the view of voting agencies? Glass Lewis has recommended shareholders vote in favour of the resolution on the annual remuneration report.
How did last year’s AGM go? The directors’ remuneration report was approved with 94.65% votes in favour.
Is there a climate-related vote? For the first time, shareholders have an advisory vote on the company’s climate change report. The document sets out plans for a 30% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2030 before carbon neutrality by 2040, as well an ambition to reduce its Scope 3 emissions by 50% by 2040. If the vote against exceeds 20%, the company will engage with its shareholders to discuss areas that can be improved.
How is the company doing on diversity? The company has a gender representation goal of 33% by 2023. It meets this ambition at a board level, but has yet to do so for senior management. The Parker review recommendation for one director from an ethnic minority background has been met.
When: 10.30am, Tuesday 26 April.
Where: Winterlake Suite at the Crowne Plaza Marlow, Fieldhouse Lane, Marlow, SL7 1GJ.
How to participate: Shareholders unable to attend the AGM can submit questions by email to CoSec@taylorwimpey.com by 10.30am on Friday 22 April. This is also the deadline for the receipt for proxy voting forms. More details on the AGM can be found here.
Who’s in the chair? Irene Dorner, who spent 30 years in banking and took on the role in February 2020.
How did the company do in the year to 31 December? Revenues rose 54% to £4.3 billion, after a 47% increase in UK completions to 14,087 and 3% lift in average selling price to £332,000. An improved operating margin of 19.3% resulted in a 177% jump in adjusted earnings to 18p a share. The final dividend of 4.44p a share is due to be paid on 13 May and will make a total for the year of 8.58p, worth £312.8 million.
How have shares performed? Up 5% to 175.5p (129.65p on Thursday).
How much is the boss paid? Pete Redfern, who is stepping down after 15 years in the role, got a total of £2.7 million for the year. As well as his basic salary of £887,000, the figure included a cash and shares bonus worth £1.27 million based on the company meeting 95% of its five targets, including the maximum on operating profit and build quality. He got £390,000 from performance shares after awards granted in 2019 vested at 22% of the total.
What’s the new boss getting? Jennie Daly will be on a £750,000 salary, an increase of 84% on her current pay as group operations director, but 16% below the level paid to Redfern. Her annual bonus opportunity will be 150% of salary, plus 200% relating to the long-term performance shares plan.
How did last year’s AGM go? The annual remuneration report was approved with 97.67% of votes in favour.
What’s the view of voting agencies? Glass Lewis describes the big pay rise for the new chief executive as appropriate. It also notes a 13% pay jump to £490,000 for finance director Chris Carney, but says this does not warrant shareholder action as the rise recognises his greater experience and broader role since being appointed in 2018.
Is there a climate-related vote? There’s no vote, but the annual report discloses that the company has achieved a 13% reduction in direct carbon emissions intensity against its 2019 baseline. Since 2013, it has achieved a 50% reduction.
How is the company doing on diversity? The company exceeds the FTSE Women Leaders Review target on gender by having at least 33% female representation. It has also met the Parker Review target of having at least one person of colour on the board by the end of 2021.
When: 12 noon, Wednesday 27 April.
Where: York Racecourse, Knavesmire Road, York, YO23 1EX.
How to participate: Proxy voting forms are required no later than 12 noon on Monday 25 April. Questions can be submitted in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org. More details on the AGM can be found here.
Who’s in the chair? Former William Hill chairman Roger Devlin was appointed in June 2018.
How did the company do in the year to 31 December? New home completions rose by nearly 1,000 to 14,551, with an average selling price 2.8% higher at £237,078 resulting in 8% growth in revenues to £3.6 billion. Underlying basic earnings per share came to 248.7p, a 12.7% increase. The regular dividend payment of 125p a share was paid on 1 April, with 110p a share of surplus capital due to be returned to shareholders in July.
How have shares performed? Up 3% to 2,856p (2,171p on Thursday).
How much is the boss paid? Chief executive Dean Finch is on a basic salary of £746,750, having received a 3% pay rise for this year in line with the wider workforce. His total remuneration for 2021 came to £2.6 million, which included £1.3 million from a short-term bonus scheme based on 92% of the maximum opportunity. He also received a buyout award worth £404,384 for remuneration he forfeited at his previous employer in 2020.
How did last year’s AGM go? The annual remuneration report was approved with 99.17% of votes in favour.
What’s the view of voting agencies? Glass Lewis is unhappy that chief financial officer Jason Windsor has been appointed on a salary of £675,000, some 26.8% higher than that of predecessor Mike Killoran. The bonus opportunity for the Aviva finance boss, who starts at Persimmon in the summer, has also increased to 175% of base salary from 150% previously. The agency prefers a phased approach to salary increases of this scale, and questions the decision to match Windsor’s pay at Aviva as the insurer is much larger by market capitalisation. It recommends shareholders vote against the annual remuneration report.
What has the company said? Remuneration committee chair Annemarie Durbin said the company needed to offer a remuneration package that would attract a high-quality candidate with an appropriate level of experience. She added: “While we appreciate that Jason’s remuneration will exceed that of his predecessor at Persimmon, we believe it is appropriate, being at a level to match but not exceed his current remuneration arrangements.”
Is there a climate-related vote? There’s no vote, but the group’s annual report contains extensive climate change disclosures, including its net zero carbon target on the homes in use by 2030 and within its own operations by 2040.
How is the company doing on diversity? At the end of 2021, the board was 33.3% female and had one director of colour.
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