As public rage begins to boil over with regard to taxpayer financed bonuses and the level of CEO salaries, particularly in the finance-related sectors, CEOs outside the finance related sectoir are beginning to take heed. Just today, Philip Boroff wrote a piece for Bloomberg discussing William F. Ruprecht, the CEO of Sotheby’ s. According to the story,
(Ruprecht) agreed to a 14 percent pay cut and the elimination of his cash bonus after profit plunged and the auction house fired workers.
Ruprecht asked the board to cut his $700,000 base salary by $100,000, or 14 percent, according to a statement the New York- based company filed to the Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday. The auction house also removed his cash bonus for 2008, which was $2.6 million in 2007.
Boroff went on to discuss other high level CEOs, Glenn Murphy of the GAP, Inc. and Craig Dubow of Gannett who have already agreed to a cut in their compensation. While these examples are far from a trend they may represent a shift in thinking on the parts of corporate boards and even CEOs who must face shareholders and the public during this difficult economic time period. We will just have to see what transpires with regard tyo compensation for top executives over the next six to nine months. Stay tuned.