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Some Apple shareholders search to dam CEO Cook dinner’s $99m pay

CUPERTINO, California, Apple investors’ advisory firm, Institutional Shareholder Services, ISS, shareholders, $99 million pay package, Tim Cook, equity award, performance criteria, Cook’s pay package CUPERTINO, California: A powerful Apple investors’ advisory firm, Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), is encouraging shareholders to vote against the $99 million pay package awarded last year to company head Tim Cook.

In a letter to shareholders before they meet next month, the firm wrote there were “significant concerns regarding the design and magnitude of the equity award” made to Cook, 61, in 2021, stressing that half of the award “lacks performance criteria.”

A vote against Cook’s pay package would be advisory only, and Apple’s board would not have to act on it.

According to Forbes, Cook has a personal fortune of $2.3 billion and has been a vocal critic of social and economic inequality, pledging to donate his fortune before his death.

In 2021, Cook’s salary was $3 million and stock awards worth $82.3 million, as well as $12m for reaching company targets, and another $1.4m for air travel, retirement plan contributions, insurance premiums and other benefits.

According to a filing disclosed in January, compared to his pay package of $14.8 million in 2020, Cook’s 2021 package was $98.7 million, 1,447 times the pay of the average Apple employee.

Apple has benefitted considerably from the COVID-19 pandemic, with its share price rising as more people worked online.

Apple became the first company to be valued at $1 trillion in 2018, and in January it briefly became the first company valued at $3 trillion, reporting a record revenue of $123.9 billion, up 11 percent from last year and higher than analysts’ predictions.

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But shareholders have become increasingly unhappy with CEO pay deals. Last year a record number of S&P 500 companies failed to attract 50 percent support from shareholders for their CEO pay packages.