UK shipbroker Clarksons has survived another substantial shareholder rebellion to push through its controversial pay policy again.
The London-listed group said its remuneration report gained 62.77% of the votes at its London annual general meeting on Wednesday, up from 60% in 2021.
The issue has been a recurring thorn in the London-listed group’s side for a number of years due to legacy contracts for chief executive Andi Case and finance and operations chief Jeff Woyda.
In 2019, a charm offensive by directors saw the brokerage scrape over the line with 51% of the vote.
This year, directors had once again been talking to shareholders to prevent a rebellion on executive pay ahead of the meeting.
Most other agenda items were passed with acceptances above 98%, but dissatisfaction over the pay issue may have spread to proposals to re-elect some board members.
Chairman Laurence Hollingworth received backing from only 81% of voters, with remuneration committee chairman Tim Miller winning just 76%.
Sue Harris and Birger Nergaard amassed around 83% each.
Clarksons said it had noted the voting levels.
“We appreciate the support from most of our shareholders and will continue our engagement over the year ahead,” the company added.
The turn-out was described as strong at 77%.
The 2021 annual report reveals Case’s overall remuneration package for the year more than doubled to £6.78m ($8.85m), from £3.17m the year before.
Woyda’s total remuneration is £2.53m for 2021, up from £1.12m.
The pair’s basic salaries were unchanged once again at £550,000 for Case and £350,000 for Woyda.
Case has not had a rise since 2010 and Woyda since 2015.
A new policy introduced in 2020 kept the legacy terms in place for the top two, but new hires face more traditional corporate deals.
Miller said earlier this year: “Retaining our excellent staff and leadership in this highly competitive market is a critical risk for shareholders and therefore a priority for the board.”
Case is rewarded not only as a CEO but as one of the biggest fee-earning brokers in the game. Woyda also performs multiple roles.
The pair have waived 8.5% of their 2021 bonuses so the cash can be distributed to workers.
The amount handed back by the duo over the last five years totals £4.28m.
Case’s 2021 bonus was £4.72m.
The broking company enjoyed a record year in 2021, with net profit hitting £54.7m, up from £35.2m in 2020.
Earlier on Wednesday, Clarksons said it had made a “good start” to 2022, according to chairman Hollingworth.