Kerry Group’s shareholders will be the final judges

Group’s performance was flat last year so just how valuable can the 22-page annual report be?

Kerry Group’s HQ in Naas, Co Kildare. The group’s  2018 remuneration report is all of 22 pages, detailing exhaustively, and with the aid of graphs, the company’s pay and bonus policies.

Kerry Group’s HQ in Naas, Co Kildare. The group’s 2018 remuneration report is all of 22 pages, detailing exhaustively, and with the aid of graphs, the company’s pay and bonus policies.

 

It is the time of year when annual reports come at investors thick and fast. Public companies have already provided shareholders with much of the key information from 2018 in their results, published over the last few weeks. Annual reports consist mostly of glossy repetitions of this, accompanied by summaries of the year gone by from the chairman and executives, written in impenetrable corporate jargon.

Nevertheless, the reports are worth proper consideration, as they carry extra information, in particular the sections outlining how much of their shareholders’ money the executives have taken home. These mini-reports have become much longer and more detailed in recent years.

Kerry Group’s annual report for 2018 is a case in point. The remuneration report is all of 22 pages, detailing exhaustively, and with the aid of graphs, the company’s pay and bonus policies.

It is hard to know just how valuable this is. Kerry’s performance was flat last year. Executives such as Gerry Behan, president and chief executive of its taste and nutrition business, saw their bonuses fall, presumably as a result of this.

His long-term incentive plan payment dropped to €1.1 million from €1.3 million, while his performance-related bonus was €540,000, from €739,000 in 2017.

This at least tells you that there is a connection between performance and bonuses, but it also says that executives get generous extra payments even when the company’s performance is so-so,

Last year was effectively chief executive Edmond Scanlon’s first in the top job, while Marguerite Larkin was only appointed chief financial officer at the end September. So it is hard to rate how generously or otherwise the company ultimately intends being to these key figures.

Shareholders are the final judges. Given how increasingly vocal some investors and advisers are now becoming about executive pay and other issues, it will be interesting to see what they make of this year’s report at Kerry’s annual general meeting.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.