Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka gets a salary cut

Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka will see his salary for FY17 fall as the company struggled to meet its targets in a tough market. In its meeting, the company board awarded him less than a fifth of the stock options he was eligible for as part of his compensation. Sikka was eligible for an annual grant of performance-based equity and stock options of $5 million, subject to achievement of performance targets.
“The Board, based on the recommendations of the Committee, approved on April 13, 2017, …ESOPs amounting to $0.96 million representing the performance-based equity and stock options for the financial year 2017,” the firm said in its filing to the stock exchanges. The board awarded Sikka $1.9 million in restricted stock units out of an annual grant of $2 million. Infosys chairman R Seshasayee said that Sikka’s salary would be lower compared to FY16.
“If the targets were not met, as in the case of Vishal, the compensation will come down this year as compared to last year. We just acted on the promise we made to shareholders,” Seshasayee told ET. Sikka’s salary has come under fire as the company fights perceptions that its governance is lax. Sikka’s overall compensation is $11 million.
This includes a base salary of $1 million, $3 million in variable pay, $2 million in restricted stock units (RSUs) and another $5 million in stock options, which would be awarded to him based on Infosys’ performance.
Sikka’s package went up from $7.08 million previously, which included up to $5.08 million in annual salary, besides a stock option of $2 million.
The firm’s compensation strategy found favour with shareholder advisory firms. “If you see (we) have not given him all the ESOPs he was eligible for. This is a good sign, to focus (on) pay with performance,” Shriram Subramanian, managing director of shareholder advisory firm InGovern, told ET.