After earning a base salary of $1 since being hired to take over as CEO of Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) in September 2011, Meg Whitman finally received a raise more in line with other information-technology chief executives and will now earn $1.5 million in base salary, according to a recently filed SEC document. Whitman's salary increase became effective Nov. 1.
Whitman's base salary was a mere token when she took over at HP, which had previously suffered a succession of negative revenue and earrings results. The vast majority of her pay for the few months of 2011 she was on the job, as well as for 2012, was performance-based.
According to an SEC document filed in January of this year, Whitman's compensation package for the remaining months of 2011 following her hiring encompassed the $1 base and $372,598 in "other compensation." For 2012, Whitman received a $1.7 million bonus, vested stock options related to her service on the HP board prior to becoming CEO valued at $84,249, other compensation of $220,901, and her $1 base salary, bringing her total annual compensation package to $1.992 million.
Allaying fears produced by recent years' repeated turnovers in the top office, in addition to enforcing several cost-cutting and strategic business initiatives, Whitman has started to regain investors' confidence, which is evident in HP's stock performance this year. Despite a difficult PC market, HP shareholders have enjoyed an 89% jump in share price year to date. Despite guarded optimism and stellar performance recently, HP's stock remains barely more than half of its 2010 prices, which were above $50 a share.
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