Apple has scheduled shareholders meeting on March 4, 2022, and ahead of the virtual meeting, the Institutional Shareholders Services group has expressed concern over a stock award worth $99 million to Apple’s CEO Tim Cook for 2021.
Tim Cook has completed ten years as the Cheif Executive Officer (CEO) of the $3 trillion, the world’s most valuable, company and under his leadership, the tech giant has added multiple product categories like Apple Watch, AirPods, Apple Music, Apple TV, iPhone SE, Apple Silicon Macs, and more.
Recently, Apple reported another record quarter with $124 billion revenue for Q1, 2022 with 11% Y-o-Y growth. But, those figures have not convinced a top shareholder advisory group that the accomplished CEO Tim Cook should be awarded a hefty bonus.
Tim Cook’s stock award for 2021 “is a significant concern” for a top shareholder advisory group
The Financial Times reports that the Institutional Shareholders Services group says the $99 million bonus “is a significant concern” with the stock awarded to Tim Cook in 2020. In 2020, Cook was awarded up to 1 million shares worth $114 million. However, the report also notes that the group’s negative recommendation requires the boards’ action and if Cook’s performance justifies the bonus, he is likely to receive it.
Shareholder votes on Apple’s executive packages are advisory only and do not require its board to take action in response. Some 95 per cent of votes cast last year went in Apple’s favour. But a significant protest this year could sway Apple’s board, nine years after the previous meaningful backlash over Cook’s pay.
ISS’s negative recommendation for Apple comes after a record number of S&P 500 companies last year failed to garner 50 per cent support for a pay vote at annual meetings.
The structure of this award is better aligned with the performance-based and time-based RSUs awarded to our other named executive officers, while the amount recognizes his exceptional leadership and is commensurate with the size, performance, and profitability Apple has achieved during his tenure.
Since Q2, 2020, Apple has reported one successful quarter after another and in spite of facing COVID-19 pandemic and supply constraints, the company launched new innovative products which facilities consumers’ unexpected transition to online learning and remote work lifestyle like the iPad Air 4 (2020), M1 MacBook Air, M1 MacBook Pro, M1 Mac mini, iPhone 12 series, iPhone 13 series, AirPods 3, iPhone SE 2, iPad Pro (2020 and 2021) and others.
Even with that success, Tim Cook ranked 8th on the 10 highest-paid CEOs and executives of 2020 in the United States.
With the majority of his earning coming from stock awards, Mr. Cook’s $265,043,550 pay in 2020 was one of the most modest by comparison to other corporate leaders. Earlier, Walls Street Journal reported that with a 28 percent increase in 2020, Mr. Cook’s pay reached $14 million which is modest in comparison to other S&P 500 executives.