WPP Group investors are reportedly shocked that the company is considering awarding Chief Executive Martin Sorrell an increase in his base salary of as much as 50%--from $1.6 million to $2.35 million--along with a possible increase in his annual bonus, according to according to U.K. newspaper The Guardian.
Mr. Sorrell, whose total compensation last year reached $6.6 million, hasn't had a raise in salary since 2007, although he did collect WPP stock worth $78 million in 2005 due to a long-term stock plan that matured, the newspaper said. A WPP spokesman told The Guardian: "As we said in our most recent annual report, Sir Martin Sorrell's base salary has been unchanged since 1 January 2007 and Sir Martin declined a review due in November 2008 because of business conditions at the time. We also said that the compensation committee considered that an increase in base salary and adjustments to incentive opportunities were appropriate and that the committee intended to consult share owners before finalising proposals. "We are going through the very early stages of that process now."
When reached by Ad Age , WPP did not have further comment on The Guardian article.