Netflix Shareholders have symbolically rejected the proposed executive compensation packages of top leaders, including co-CEOs Ted Sarandos and Greg Peters.
The vote, which took place during the company’s annual shareholders meeting on June 1, was a non-binding advisory measure. Although the majority of shareholder votes had already been cast prior to the Writers Guild of America’s (WGA) letter urging investors to vote against the measures, most of those votes were against approving the compensation packages.
The WGA had criticized the executive pay structure in light of the ongoing strike, stating, “Shareholders should send a message to Netflix that if the company could afford to spend $166 million on executive compensation last year, it can afford to pay the estimated $68 million per year that writers are asking for in contract improvements and put an end to the disruptive strike.”
The WGA also sent a similar letter to Comcast investors ahead of their upcoming shareholder meeting.
Last year, only 27% of shareholder votes at Netflix’s meeting supported the 2022 executive compensation plans. The final vote tallies from this year’s meeting will be disclosed in an upcoming filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Netflix executives’ compensation packages for 2023 have been unveiled. Co-CEO Ted Sarandos will receive $40 million, matching his 2022 pay, including a $3 million salary, $17 million bonus, and $20 million in stock options. Co-CEO Greg Peters is set to receive $34.65 million, with a $3 million salary, $17.325 million in options, and a $14.325 million target bonus.
Other executives like CFO Spencer Neumann, chief legal officer David Hyman, and chief communications officer Rachel Whetstone will receive compensation packages worth $14 million, $11 million, and $6.5 million respectively, combining salaries and stock options.