The Business On... Steve Ballmer, chief executive, Microsoft


He's still there then?

Hanging on doggedly. More than 11 years after taking over from Bill Gates, his Harvard hall-mate, Mr Ballmer shows no sign of moving on.



Shareholders love him, right?

Well, not all of them. He's already faced one call to step down this year – in May, David Einhorn, the boss of Greenlight Capital, complained that Mr Ballmer had become a drag on the company's share price. "Someone else ought to have a go," Mr Einhorn said.



But the board backs him?

Yes, but the details of his latest pay and rewards, released yesterday, make interesting reading. The board opted to pay him only half the bonus he could have made last year had he hit all his targets.



Why did he miss out?

Because of the problems Mr Einhorn has been highlighting. Microsoft's Bing search engine is doing better and the Kinect home entertainment system has been a hit. But sales of its all-important Windows operating system have begun to slow and, crucially, Microsoft keeps losing ground to Google and Apple. It is still behind the curve on mobile phone and tablet computer technology.



All the same, no doubt his pay deal was still mega?

Actually, his remuneration totalled $1.3m – half bonus, half pay. To most of us, of course, that's a huge sum, but it's quite modest compared to the pay of the CEOs of many other large companies. Rival technology companies routinely pay their bosses $15m a year or more.



Will he get by?

Don't panic, he's not on his uppers. Forbes ranks him as the US's 46th wealthiest individual, putting his fortune at around $14.5bn. He owns 4 per cent of Microsoft – and,actually, one of the reasons his pay is lower than many others is because he's chosen to stop taking stock options from the company.



Any chance of a pay rise instead?

Microsoft's board has given him two per cent extra this year. The company says it is conscious Mr Ballmer – its 30th employee when he joined in 1980 – is "underpaid".

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: Office Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Have you been doing a brilliant job in an admi...

Surrey County Council: Senior Project Officer (Fixed Term to Feb 2019)

£26,498 - £31,556: Surrey County Council: We are looking for an outgoing, conf...

Recruitment Genius: Interim Head of HR

£50000 - £60000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you an innovative, senior H...

Recruitment Genius: Human Resources and Payroll Administrator

£20000 - £22000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client, a very well respect...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower