At first blush, there seems not to be much to say about executive compensation at Sherritt International Corp. A million bucks here and there, positive feedback from proxy-advisory services, solid shareholder support for the compensation approach in its “say on pay” vote.
The problem, though, is that if you’re a long-suffering stockholder of the miner of nickel and cobalt, you may wonder why anyone there is getting paid anything at all. At the very least, the pay at Sherritt illustrates the problem with trying to match up “long-term” incentive pay to the truly long-term shareholder experience.
Sherritt’s best days, it can be said, are in the past. Incorporated in 1927, it has the historic single-letter “S” ticker on the Toronto Stock Exchange. At one point, it was worth billions and was a member of the S&P/TSX Composite Index.
However, the shares have fallen more than 97 per cent from their all-time high of $18 in October, 2007, giving it a market capitalization of less than $200-million. That return even includes an amazing 557-per-cent gain from its COVID-19 pandemic lows.
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