Morrisons shareholders revolt on executive pay

Bradford-based supermarket giant Morrisons said almost 35% of votes cast at its AGM on Thursday opposed the company’s remuneration policy. 

Investor advisory group ISS had recommended shareholders vote against the policy because the pension contribution rate of 24% for CEO David Potts and chief operating officer Trevor Strain was not aligned with the 5% received by most of the company’s workforce. 

Morrisons said 34.8% of votes cast at the AGM were against the resolution to approve the remuneration policy, with 65.2% in favour. 

“The board thanks shareholders for their support of the new remuneration policy … which was approved with a 65% vote in favour, but notes the number of votes opposing this resolution,” said Morrisons.

“We undertook an extensive consultation process before proposing the new remuneration policy and hope that shareholders note the positive changes we have made including the introduction of a post-cessation shareholding guideline.

“Although the policy vote passed, and we received considerable positive feedback during consultation, the board acknowledges a number of shareholders decided to vote against the policy.

“Kevin Havelock (chair of the remuneration committee), on behalf of the board, will therefore continue to engage with shareholders and will report in due course on the outcome of those discussions.”