BT under fire for big bonus payouts to executives

BT has come under fire for awarding big bonus payouts.

The telecoms group – which has recently announced plans to shed a further 15,000 jobs after plunging into the red – revealed that chief executive Ian Livingstone had been awarded a bonus payout of £343,000.

Livingstone, who took over from Ben Verwaayen last year, failed to meet a single financial target.

But the group said the bonus was based on the non-financial elements of Livingstone’s scorecard – customer service and environmental and social measures – and the chief executive would convert his bonus into shares.

In its annual report, published yesterday, the phone giant also revealed that former chief executive Verwaayen received a termination payment of £700,000 – equivalent to just over 10 months’ pay.

He further received a bonus of £300,000 as well as a salary of £277,000 for the period he worked for the company in 2008/09.

Meanwhile, Francois Barrault, who resigned as chief executive of BT Global Services in November after a profits warning, left with a £2.85m package including a £1.6m ‘termination’.

BT said payment was made in “strict accordance with his contract”.

Andy Kerr, deputy general secretary of the Communication Workers’ Union said: “Francois Barrault’s payout is outrageous. He is being rewarded for failure.”

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