Sir Stelios reignites easyJet feud in fury over remuneration
Friday 11 February 2011
The rapprochement between Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou and easyJet proved all too brief yesterday when the airline's founder said he would vote down the £1m pay deal for its former chief executive Andrew Harrison at next week's annual meeting.
Mr Harrison left the airline last year after a dispute with Sir Stelios over easyJet's growth strategy and the rights to the "easy" name. Since his departure, Sir Stelios and the new chief executive, Carolyn McCall, appeared to be building bridges, agreeing a deal to settle the brand dispute last October.
But the feud with Mr Harrison re-surfaced yesterday. Sir Stelios – whose family still controls 38 per cent of easyJet – wrote to the chairman, Sir Michael Rake, to say he would vote against measures to pay Mr Harrison a £750,000 salary and £250,000 bonus for the period from April to September last year, despite his leaving at the end of June.
"I was not consulted on this package, either as a director or as a shareholder, as is customary with major shareholders," Sir Stelios said in his letter, accusing Mr Harrison of using the dispute to give himself "the upper hand" in his own pay negotiations.
The feud between Sir Stelios and Mr Harrison peaked last summer when the easyJet founder described the chief executive as "over-rated" and resigned from the board to pursue the matter as an activist shareholder.
Sir Stelios was no more forgiving in his letter to Sir Michael yesterday. He "favourably acknowledged" current executives' decisions to waive their bonuses in response to "the mess that the company was in last summer" because of crew shortages. But he blamed those shortages on decisions made by Mr Harrison the previous winter in an effort to boost the quarterly numbers without regard to the longer term consequences.
Mr Harrison said: "As CEO of easyJet my job was to implement the strategy agreed by the board. All aspects of my remuneration were determined by the remuneration committee and to the best of my knowledge were communicated to the full board."
- 2 Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
- 3 General Election 2015: 14-year-old boy asks Nick Clegg – 'can you kill Katie Hopkins?'
Italian police 'reveal' what Jesus looked like as a young boy
Who should I vote for? The Independent quiz matches best political party for undecided voters ahead of the general election
Met Gala 2015: Beyoncé manages to out-skimp Rihanna, Miley and Kim Kardashian combined with near-naked ensemble
Syria's 'circle of hell': Aleppo residents describe children without heads, streets filled with blood and injuries never before witnessed by surgeons
General Election 2015: Photographic history of Bullingdon Club tracked down - including new picture of David Cameron in his finery
In defence of liberal democracy
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
General election live: Clegg warns of second election before Christmas without Lib Dems
iJobs Money & Business
£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Can you speak German,...
£25000 - £30000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: An exciting opportunity f...
£215 per day: Ashdown Group: Junior Project Manager (website, web application ...
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software Engineer / Softw...