Revealed: Former Misys banking head's £1m pay-off

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The Independent Online

Ivan Martin, the former head of the Misys banking software division, walked away from the company last year with a near-£1m pay-off and remains eligible to cash in on share options potentially worth millions.

Mr Martin's contract was terminated at the end of last year after a disastrous profits warning at the banking division. According to the software company's annual report, published yesterday, he could be eligible for more than 1 million shares awarded to him under long-term incentive plans if performance targets are met. The company declined to say whether these options would vest if Misys were to be taken over, as is expected.

Misys, which develops software for the financial services and healthcare markets, has opened up its accounts for due diligence to several potential bidders. Interested parties include a management buyout team led by its founder and chief executive Kevin Lomax as well as industry rivals Sungard and Fiserv. The private equity companies Permira and General Atlantic have also expressed an interest.

A Misys spokeswoman said Mr Martin has been paid according to his contractual entitlements. The pay-off comprises more than £200,000 in salary, a termination payment of nearly £318,000 and £100,000 as compensation for the loss of participation in this year's bonus scheme. Other payments include a £150,000 pension contribution, nearly £9,000 in car allowances and an £80,000 payment to cover tax liabilities related to a rented property near the Misys banking unit's headquarters in Wimbledon.

Mr Martin was originally linked with leading a private equity bid, although that speculation cooled after it became clear that former executives John Sussens, Ross Graham and Mike O'Leary were behind the approach.

Before his contract was terminated last year, Mr Martin was at the centre of an investor backlash against a controversial bonus scheme. Under the plan, Mr Martin and Tom Skelton, the head of the company's healthcare division, would have been eligible for bonuses worth £1.2m to keep the two executives within the company. Yet investors rejected the plan and Mr Martin left Misys by mutual consent.