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Fiat's late CEO Marchionne given US$54m in pay, perks for year he died

New York

FIAT Chrysler Automobile NV's late chief executive officer Sergio Marchionne received a total of US$54 million in cash compensation, perks and shares in 2018, the year of his sudden death.

About US$42 million of Mr Marchionne's haul came from 2.8 million shares granted under a long-term award that was linked to performance metrics spanning several years. He was also paid a US$5.2 million bonus for 2017, and US$2.3 million in salary. He did not receive a bonus for last year. Fiat Chrysler also paid about US$5 million for Mr Marchionne's insurance premiums, tax preparation and tax equalisation.

The board set a US$14 million target compensation for 2019 for Mr Marchionne's successor, Mike Manley, including salary, bonus and restricted stock worth US$10 million. Mr Manley, who oversaw the Jeep brand before being tapped to lead the carmaker in July, got about US$1.1 million for his work in the second half of last year, including perks and a bonus that doesn't pay out until this year.

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Mr Manley, 54, also received US$3 million in restricted stock that could vest if certain targets are achieved. Fiat Chrysler did not disclose the compensation he received before he took over the CEO job from his ailing predecessor.

Compared with Mr Marchionne, Mr Manley's pay is more in line with the typical executive compensation programmes at firms in the US and Western Europe: a salary, a target bonus set at roughly double the salary, and a significantly larger equity award.

Mr Marchionne reaped an annual salary of about US$4 million in his final years on the job after the tie-up of Fiat and Chrysler in 2014 - a far larger fixed compensation than his counterparts at carmakers including General Motors and Volkswagen. He received several big awards around the time of the merger, most of which were tied to performance goals stretching several years.

Car industry executive pay has been the subject of unprecedented coverage in the months since the arrest of fallen Renault and Nissan Motor executive Carlos Ghosn. The longtime leader of the French and Japanese carmakers averaged about US$15 million in reported annual compensation from the two companies in the years leading up to his arrest in 2018. BLOOMBERG