Smurfit Kappa boss Tony Smurfit enjoys 40% pay rise

Chief executive gets €3.4 million pay packet after company rebuffs IP takeover approach

The chief executive of Smurfit Kappa, Tony Smurfit, enjoyed a 40 per cent jump in remuneration last year, according to the company's latest annual report.

The increase came as the packaging firm fought off a takeover approach from US rival International Paper (IP), which valued it at €9 billion at one stage.

Mr Smurfit, the third generation of his family to lead the Dublin-based, FTSE 100-listed group, received a total pay packet worth €3.4 million in 2018.

This included a basic salary of €1.1 million and a bonus of €1.6 million, according to the annual report.


The company's chief financial officer Ken Bowles enjoyed a similar jump in remuneration, taking home a total pay packet of €1.7 million, which included a basic salary of €600,000 and a bonus of €880,000.

Smurfit Kappa rejected IP’s offer, insisting it was better off as an independent company. IP eventually pulled its bid in June, claiming Smurfit Kappa refused to engage with its proposal. Since then Smurfit Kappa shares have fallen by over 25 per cent.

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy

Eoin Burke-Kennedy is Economics Correspondent of The Irish Times