Rupert Murdoch’s pay drops 5% in 2015 to $28 million; James' down 19% at $15 million

MUMBAI: In his last year as CEO of 21st Century Fox, Rupert Murdoch took home five per cent less salary in 2015 as compared to 2014. The senior Murdoch was named executive co-chairman of the company in July this year. His pay in the fiscal year ended in June 2015 stood at $27.9 million as opposed to $29.24 million in 2014.


While his base salary was steady at $7.1 million, his stock award fell 18 per cent to $5.15 million. On the other hand, his non-equity plan compensation fell four per cent to $9.77 million. The senior Murdoch also will be pocketing a bonus of $21 million for his contribution in growing the company’s brands and businesses domestically as well as his plans for future growth with continued investments in domestic cable networks and in international markets.


Additionally, 21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch’s total pay also saw a decline of almost 19 per cent at $15.05 million in 2015 as compared to $18.7 million in 2014. His salary continued to remain the same at $3 million, whereas his stock awards were down 18 per cent to $5.42 million. His non-equity incentive compensation too declined four per cent to $5.58 million.


James Murdoch, who is slated to received a bonus of $12 million, played an important role during fiscal 2015 in developing the company’s key international businesses and investments. Moreover, the company said that he continues to champion the expansion of the company’s international sports portfolio, particularly with new rights acquisitions at Star Sports in India, positioning the company for greater profitability. Under his leadership, the company continues to expand its digital offerings of its library product and explores opportunities to obtain the digital rights to other key programming and to expand its digital advertising capabilities.


In a proxy filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in 29 September, the company said that this was due to the decline in stock awards and non-equity incentive compensation.


On the other hand, the company’s deputy chairman Chase Carey, who also served as the company’s COO with James until July, received compensation of $23.22 million for the year ended 30 June, 2015, which was down from $27.9 million in 2014. Carey’s salary remained the same at $4.05 million. Carey, who now serves as the 21st Century Fox’s executive vice chairman, will receive a bonus of $20 million for hisexceptional strategic leadership and management.


21st Century Fox’s proxy filing also mentioned that the company's annual meeting is scheduled on 12 November in Los Angeles, California.


For the year ended 30 June, 21st Century Fox's net income dropped 36 per cent to $4.51 billion, while revenues grew 15 per cent to $ 31.9 billion.


21st Century Fox Business Highlights for 2015 are as follows:





• The company continued its expansion of its international cable business, particularly at Star India. Star Sports’ broadcast of the ICC Cricket World Cup set an all-time viewership record, and the introduction of two new local sports leagues, Kabaddi and Indian Super League (soccer), provided strong ratings and present new opportunities.


• Through Star India’s agreement to acquire the broadcast business of MAA Television Network Limited, the company initiated its expansion into the Telugu TV market.


• The company expanded its non-linear advertising products and services through the launch of Hotstar, a digital video streaming platform in India.





• The company continued to grow its television and cable channel businesses through obtaining and increasing retransmission and affiliate compensation and securing key distribution agreements.


• The company continued to strengthen its core domestic cable business with the growth of its national sports channel Fox Sports 1 by featuring additional sports events including the U.S. Open Golf Championship and Women’s World Cup events, and by growing its third branded FX channel, FXX, by featuring all episodes of The Simpsons and premiering an extensive slate of theatrical motion pictures.


• The company’s filmed entertainment business continued to have leading worldwide box office sales while creating and growing new and existing film franchises such as The Maze Runner, Kingsman and Planet of the Apes.


• The company created new hit series such as Empire and The Last Man on Earth and enhanced its key existing brands including The Simpsons, Family Guy, Modern Family and Homeland. In addition, the company is reinvigorating the broadcast network’s primetime line-up with the successful debuts of Gotham, Last Man on Earth and Empire, which was the number one new show and highest rated broadcast show in the 2014-2015 broadcast season.


• The company expanded its non-linear advertising products and services through the acquisition of true[X], a leading engagement advertising company specializing in advertising formats for on-demand marketing campaigns in the U.S.


• The company returned a significant amount of cash to stockholders through stock repurchases of approximately $5.9 billion during fiscal 2015, a 57 per cent increase over fiscal 2014 levels and through increasing the semi-annual dividend by 20 per cent to $0.15 per Class A and Class B share, resulting in an annual dividend for fiscal 2015 of $0.30 per share or approximately $610 million. In August 2015, the company announced that the Board approved an additional $5 billion authorization to the Company’s stock repurchase program intended to be completed by August 2016.


• The company sold its direct broadcast satellite television (DBS) businesses, Sky Italia and its interest in Sky Deutschland AG (Sky Deutschland), to Sky plc (formerly known as British Sky Broadcasting Group plc) for approximately $8.8 billion, resulting in a gain of approximately $5 billion and creating a pan-European digital television leader.


• The company and funds managed by affiliates of Apollo Global Management, LLC created Endemol Shine Group, a global multi-platform content provider bringing together the Shine Group, Endemol and Core Media Group.

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