BT pays new boss £50k more than Verwaayen

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The Independent Online

The new chief executive of BT, Ian Livingston, will be paid £50,000 a year more than his predecessor Ben Verwaayen.

According to details of executive pay published by the telecoms giant yesterday, Mr Livingston's annual salary will rise by £290,000 when he moves from his current post as head of retail to take over the top job on 1 June.

He will receive a basic package of £850,000, compared with the £800,000 paid to Mr Verwaayen, who led BT for six years.

The company said Mr Verwaayen would have been paid the same had he stayed on. It said the BT remuneration committee chose to increase the chief executive's salary in response to a review which suggested that executive packages were below the mid-level for the sector.

However, the pay rise still raised eyebrows in the City. Mark Blowers, an analyst at Butler Group, said: "You would have thought that Ian Livingston would start at the same rate, particularly with his lack of experience compared to Verwaayen.

"Such big raises also give out mixed messages to the rest of the company in the current economic climate."

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