Adweek is reporting that Omnicom Group CEO John Wren received total compensation of $2.95 million last year, including $1 million in salary, according to the company’s annual proxy statement. However, this amount is 74% less than his take in 2007, which was a whopping $10.39 million.
The paper also has this information: “DDB worldwide CEO Chuck Brymer and BBDO worldwide CEO Andrew Robertson earned $1.87 million and $1.85 million in compensation, respectively, down from $3.86 million and $4.57 million, respectively, in 2007, per the proxy. Their salaries, however, remained constant: Brymer’s stayed at $850,000 and Robertson’s at $900,000.”
The question is – do these guys deserve their salaries? True, they all took a hit on pay in 2007, as they should have considering the market’s downturn and the numbers filling out the ranks of the unemployed, but is close to $3M to much for Wren?
Historically, Omnicom and Wren have done a good job of weathering downturns. In 2001, the last great fiscal storm, Omnicom was the only holding company to maintain positive growth. IPG was just getting its balance sheet in order. WPP took a hit of -1.5% and in 2002, -5.9%. Havas had a small gain of .3, but in 2002, organic growth took a nosedive coming in at -5.8%. Publicis? Two thousand and one – 3.1%, but again, in 2002, they take a hit, down -3.9%. In essence, Omnicom kept it together.
Two thousand and nine looks a bit different. This year, according to analysts, the company is slated to follow the trend of the other holding companies and take a massive hit of around -5%. Wren and Omnicom are no longer out performing the top line.
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