New GM CEO Mary Barra set to earn $14.4 million

To be paid more than previous CEO but less than pre-bailout top executives.

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February 11, 2014

Detroit, Mich. -- General Motors expects new CEO Mary Barra to earn about $14.4 million this year, well ahead of her predecessor but still less than the company’s CEO made before its 2009 federal bailout.

“As a new CEO, Mary’s total compensation is in line with her peer group and properly weighted so that most is at-risk,” says GM Chairman Tim Solso. “The company’s performance will ultimately determine how much she is paid.”

The bulk of Barra’s compensation, $10 million, is long-term awards of stock and stock options that will have to be approved by shareholders later this year. If GM’s stock drops, the value of those shares and options will fall as well.

Barra’s compensation is a 60% increase over Dan Akerson’s pay. Akerson was part of the team appointed to GM’s board following its bailout and eventual bankruptcy. He stepped down in January after about two years running the automaker.

GM was under limits on what it could pay Wagoner because of the bailout. The U.S. Treasury Department sold the last of its shares in the automkaer last year, freeing to pay its top executives whatever it felt was reasonable.

SEC filings show that Rick Wagoner, GM’s CEO in early 2009, received an $18.5 million pay package in 2008, his last full year to run the company. But like Barra, most of that was stock and stock options that became nearly worthless when GM went through bankruptcy in 2009.

Barra’s $4.4 million in salary and short-term payments is still well under the $5.7 million in cash that Wagoner received.

Source: General Motors, Securities and Exchange Commission