Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert Iger collected a 35% jump in compensation… (Danny Moloshok, Reuters )
Walt Disney Co. Chief Executive Robert A. Iger commanded a 35% jump in salary and bonuses in 2010, rewarding what the board of directors' compensation committee called his "exceptional performance" in the face of a slow-recovering U.S. economy.
Iger's salary and bonus reached nearly $16.3 million, up from $12 million a year earlier. His total compensation, including equity awards, reached $28 million, according to the company's proxy filed Friday with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The board's compensation committee said Iger managed to deliver a strong financial performance for the company. It noted that three of Disney's cable channels — Disney Channel, ESPN and ABC Family — delivered record ratings, and two movies, "Alice in Wonderland" and Pixar Animation's "Toy Story 3," reaped $1 billion in global box-office receipts.
The labor union representing hourly workers at the Disneyland Resort hotels has taken issue with Iger's pay and bonuses and has attempted to give Disney shareholders a greater voice in executive compensation.
Disney's head of strategic planning, Kevin A. Mayer, collected a 42.5% hike in his salary and bonus to $2.3 million. Including equity awards, his compensation reached $4.1 million, which the compensation committee said recognized his role in completing Disney's $4-billion acquisition of Marvel Entertainment in late 2009 and identifying new acquisitions, such as the social gaming company Playdom, for which Disney paid $563.2 million in July.
The entertainment giant reported net income of nearly $4 billion for fiscal 2010, a gain of 20% over the previous year. Revenue reached $38 billion, up 5% from fiscal 2009. The company's stock flirted with a 10-year high of $40 this month after a trio of favorable analyst reports noted that theme park spending was on the rebound and the revenue picture was improving at Disney's cable networks.
Disney's stock closed Friday down 61 cents, or 1.6%, at $38.85.