Lloyds chief paid £4.6m golden hello

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The Independent Online

Lloyds Banking Group yesterday revealed it had paid a £4.6m golden hello to its new chief executive, Antonio Horta-Osorio, to prise him away from Santander.

The bank's annual report disclosed that Mr Horta-Osorio was paid £4.1m in shares and £516,000 in cash to compensate him for giving up awards at Santander, Lloyds' Spanish rival. The payment is on top of a long-term share payment of £4.5m and his basic salary of £1.06m.

In the annual report, Sir Win Bischoff, Lloyds' chairman, said Mr Horta-Osorio was on the bank's hit list from the start and that, instead of hiring a recruitment firm, he approached him personally.

Lloyds is also making hefty payments to Mr Horta-Osorio's pension, including £600,000 a year that he can take as a cash allowance. Lloyds said it was using a £1.22m "reference salary" to calculate his pension and long-term share awards because, despite earning more than his predecessor Eric Daniels, Mr Horta-Osorio's basic pay was below the market rate.