Stelios renews assault on easyJet bonuses

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Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou, easyJet's founder, complained yesterday that the "shareholder spring" – which saw Aviva's chief executive Andrew Moss quit and put pressure on William Hill's boss, Ralph Topping, about the amount he was paid – had made no impact on the airline.

"Surely the shareholder activism has left a mark somewhere? Apparently not," Sir Stelios, easyJet's biggest shareholder, said. "We still have three confusing methods to calculate return on capital employed," he said, which chairman Sir Mike Rake "has chosen as the metric for bonus payments".

The airline, in response to previous complaints from Sir Stelios, hired Deloitte to examine its accounting. Sir Stelios said: "The latest wheeze is to get another expensive set of advisers – Deloitte – to tell us something we already know: these payments are just too high."

EasyJet said a rise in business travellers helped it to narrow the half-year loss in what is for airlines the tough six months to April. The pre-tax loss in the six months to April fell 27 per cent to £112m.