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Anger at WH Smith chief's GBP1.2m bonus.

M2 BEST BOOKS-(C)2000-2004 M2 COMMUNICATIONS LTD

Struggling high street bookseller, WH Smith, has been forced to defend a one off reward of GBP1.2m to its new chief executive.

The 'golden hello' deal for Kate Swann, who joined WH Smith in November 2003, consists of GBP500,000 in cash, a bonus of GBP220,000 and if she stays for two and a half years another GBP500,000 in the form of share options.

Members of the National Association of Pension Funds are being advised to vote against the remuneration at the company's AGM, as they feel that the deal is not tied closely enough to performance targets.

WH Smith has had a torrid few years, with increased competition from online retailers, supermarkets and dedicated bookshops, and has issued profit warning and the threat of job cuts after a poor 2003 Christmas performance, reports The Guardian.
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Publication:M2 Best Books
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jan 23, 2004
Words:147
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