Outlook: Sam Chisholm is unique indeed
Friday 17 October 1997
So why is it that no one is going to begrudge too much Mr Chisholm his barrow load of dosh? In part it is because BSkyB is so much his own entrepreneurial creation. It may have been Rupert Murdoch who provided the original idea, the risk capital, the vision to get the enterprise off the ground and then drive through the all important merger with British Satellite Broadcasting, but it was Mr Chisholm who made it happen and turned the company into the success it is today.
Furthermore, to the extent that BSkyB has a virtual monopoly of subscription television in Britain, this is only so because it got there first and then, as all clever organisations do, defended its position vigorously with regulators and in the market. This was a franchise won, not delivered on a plate. In other words, Mr Chisholm is a special case. Some remuneration committees will no doubt try to use Mr Chisholm's earnings as a new benchmark for executive pay. They should expect the wrath of their shareholders if they do.
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