TI chairman's earnings up by 93% to pounds 2.8m

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The Independent Online
The debate over boardroom excess will be fuelled by the revelation that Sir Christopher Lewinton, chairman and chief executive of TI, is set to take home pounds 2.84m for a year's work at the engineering group. News of the 93 per cent increase over his remuneration for 1995 came on the same day it was disclosed that Guinness chairman Anthony Greener picked up a pounds 100,000 rise in his basic pay to pounds 700,000 last year.

The latest jumbo pay rises for the bosses of Britain's top 100 companies come in the wake of controversy over the 266 per cent increase to pounds 1.3m awarded in 1996 to Peter George, chief executive of Ladbroke, and the pounds 949,000 paid to Alan Jackson, former chief executive of BTR, in a year when he only worked three months in his old job.

Sir Christopher's remuneration was boosted by his cashing in share options worth pounds 1.37m last year. Without them, his underlying remuneration would have gone down to pounds 1.13m from pounds 1.2m, including a cash and shares bonus cut from pounds 574,000 to pounds 469,000.

However, he is set to receive a pounds 336,000 payment under the company's three-year long-term incentive scheme next month, up from the pounds 263,000 paid out last time under the 1993 to 1995 plan.

Sir Christopher's occupation of the two top jobs at TI is frowned upon if not outlawed by the Cadbury code on corporate governance, which says such a combination "represents a considerable concentration of power". He has said he will relinquish one of the roles within a year to 18 months.

Mr Greener's underlying pay rise came after he turned down profit-related bonus payments. Adding in benefits and other perks, the total salary paid by the brewing and whisky group rose from pounds 704,000 to pounds 751,000. A Guinness spokesman justified the increase on the grounds that Mr Greener had not had an increase in his basic salary for three years.

The latest figures, all gleaned from annual accounts published yesterday, also showed that Brian Walsh, TI's vice chairman and group finance director, will pick up pounds 1.03m from the company for 1996.

Mr Walsh, who is to retire at next month's annual meeting, received total remuneration of pounds 452,000, down from pounds 457,000, but cashed in options worth pounds 429,000 and will receive a pounds 153,000 payment under the long-term incentive plan, up from pounds 120,000 before.