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Hewlett Packard spends $13 million to fire CEO

The Local · 30 Sep 2011, 15:11

Published: 30 Sep 2011 15:11 GMT+02:00

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Apotheker was ousted from the top HP position last week, after the company’s shares lost almost half of their value during his tenure.

But a severance payment of $7.2 million – to be paid over the next 18 months — in addition to an outstanding annual premium of about $2.4 million and stock shares worth almost $3.5 million, should ease the pain for the 58-year-old.

The settlement was revealed in HP documents filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

HP is also financing Apotheker’s transatlantic move as well as offering up to $300,000, should he make a loss on selling his house in California.

"We didn't see this executive team working on the same page or working together," Ray Lane, who was moved to executive chairman of the board, told the Wall Street Journal following Apotheker’s departure.

Former Ebay CEO Meg Whitman is taking over for Apotheker at a starting annual salary of just one dollar. However, her fortune is estimated at more than $1 billion after leaving Ebay.

One-dollar-a-year salaries have trended among high profile CEOs in the US, with Whitman joining Apple’s former CEO Steve Jobs, Yahoo founder Jerry Yang and Google executives Larry Page, Eric Schmidt and Sergey Brin in taking only meagre wages, according to Reuters news agency.

Whitman can also purchase 1.9 million HP shares and is eligible for bonuses of up to $6 million, depending on how well the business does.

Story continues below…

HP still has significant challenges to overcome with Whitman at the helm. The Wall Street Journal reported heavy criticism from analysts following Whitman’s selection and the board’s search process.

DPA/The Local/emh

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

16:39 September 30, 2011 by whiteriver
in the picture he doesn't seem sad for being fired.
17:21 September 30, 2011 by zeddriver
That is one area of corparate culture that gets me angry. People in high positions fail to perform. And the end result! He gets $13 Mil bonus for failing and getting fired. No wonder these CEO country club overeducated idiots don't care about doing the right thing for the companies they operate. There's no disincentive or punishment for failure.
17:48 September 30, 2011 by Englishted
Ah ,capitalism such a caring system.

Makes me cry ,with rage.
18:20 September 30, 2011 by zeddriver
The basic tenant of capitalism is not the problem. It's when it's taken to an extreme that problems develop. Just as in Germanys past nationalism. Being proud of your nation and of who you are is not a bad thing. Untill it went to the level of a superiority complex followed by racism and murder.
01:18 October 1, 2011 by mkvgtired
If the guy was with the company 20 years and brought it from a $2 billion to a $10 billion company, sure give him a $13 Million severance.

Seems like a pretty good deal for 11 months of failure. Shareholders lost almost half their value, and have to pay this guy a massive severance. Seems fair.
17:19 October 1, 2011 by Englishted

Yes the basic tenant of capitalism is the problem , Greed .

But why you went off at tangent onto naziasm I don't know?
23:26 October 1, 2011 by zeddriver
Because most people are well versed in that subject and can therefor make the connection.

I suppose in your non capitalist world then. If one builds a factory to supply a demand. They should only charge the customer what it cost to build it. Or maybe if you went to collage your employer should only pay you enough over a base line wage to cover the cost of your education based on your expected working lifetime. After all, no one deserves to make more than anyone else.
18:48 October 7, 2011 by Englishted

Yes nobody deserves to make more at the cost of another persons heath or life.

Your line could be used to re-introduce slavery .
11:26 October 10, 2011 by nolibs
This is exactly the type of story that rallies people against capitalism. I have no issue with a man who starts a company and makes millions. That kind a person deserves every penny. I do have an issue with companies that have gone public and hire CEO's at exorbitant salaries, with stock and benefits that most would never see in an entire lifetime.

I'm sure HP could find a CEO for far far less.
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