Fonterra defends CEO’s $8.3m pay packet

Theo Spierings will earn $8.3 million this year. Photo: RNZ / Diego Opatowski

Fonterra is defending the skyrocketing of its chief executive's $8.3 million pay packet for the year, up nearly 80 percent from last year.

Theo Spierings was paid $4.6m last year, slightly less than in 2015.

The Fonterra chair, John Wilson, says Theo Spierings' base salary did not increase from last year, but his bonuses did.

He says short-term and senior executive incentives were met, which brought in about $2 billion of cash and working capital.

"Clearly these numbers are high from a New Zealand perspective and we absolutely respect and understand that, from an Australasian and a global perspective which is the nature of our business, they're actually well within the bands of what those global executives earn."

Meanwhile, Fonterra has reported a weaker full-year profit, as the rebound in milk prices hits its profit margins.

The dairy co-operative's net profit for the year ended July fell 11 percent to $745 million, compared with last year's $834 million.

Revenue climbed about 12 percent to $19.2 billion, but milk volumes fell about 3 per cent.



@ dbunk 2

Posted on 18-10-2017 17:52 | By MISS ADVENTURE

Perhaps as they are then all monkeys, we could through a banana out seaward onto White Island and leave before they realise leaving them all there ... cheap at the price of a one way ticket and a banana each!

@ dbunk

Posted on 06-10-2017 12:11 | By MISS ADVENTURE

So perhaps taking that level of discussion to a local level, then clearly it would be your view that the local council members are "Monkey's"? based on the pay packet!

Worldwide Salary

Posted on 27-09-2017 08:38 | By dbunk

If you want the best, you have to pay for the best, Alan Joyce - CEO of Qantas, a similar sized company is paid 26.4mil AUD as a comparison, pay peanuts and you will get a monkey. Fonterra has 22,000 employees and is responsible for 30% of the worlds dairy, everyone quickly forgets that years the payout was over 8 dollars, over the last 8 years it averages over 6 yet everyone focus' on the smallest payout and quotes that year after year. The naysayers should walk a day in this mans shoes, i bet they would crumble in a heap like the companies they have probably run in the past to lead to their negative and somewhat jealous comments, donate it to charity? This man has a certain set of skills that are highly valuable, what he does with his money is his choice.

I wouldn’t pay that much

Posted on 26-09-2017 22:43 | By waiknot

But hey its a private company and if the shareholders think they are getting value. ....

Should have gone to Specsavers ?

Posted on 26-09-2017 21:32 | By comfortablynumb

I thought I misread this ! How can they justify giving this man this sort of salary? It is truly obscene. Hope he donates most of it to a worthy cause, but I bet he doesnt!I for one will boycott their products from now on. I know this wont make a shred of difference but will make me feel at least a little better.

They probably...

Posted on 26-09-2017 19:35 | By Me again

receive the same Brian when they resign. That is repulsive to say the least. Ridiculous prices on their products as well. Absolutely no shame that Company.

Way over the top

Posted on 26-09-2017 18:00 | By Brian Porter

His salary is ridicules, he's not running the company all by his self, has fellow directors, plus no doubt they will seek advise from the like of consultants, bankers, and other experts.

Beyond the pale

Posted on 26-09-2017 17:29 | By Papamoaner

People with special skills can demand special pay I guess, but when they start accepting money that god wouldn't earn, they just become obscene dorks devoid of all shame. Even one tenth of that salary is still over the top at 830,000 p.a. How can the community ever respect these people, especially with dairy farmers struggling and under threat from the water and nitrogen police? How much funding is Fonterra contributing towards research into water and nitrogen control? How many other greedy glutinous slobs are feeding at this trough of pig swill? Word of warning to Fonterra and their ilk;- upset the community and it will come back to bite you.


Posted on 26-09-2017 17:28 | By maildrop

I wouldn't mind but the milk is watered down rubbish.

What the ?????

Posted on 26-09-2017 15:56 | By Waylon

Obscene !


Posted on 26-09-2017 15:50 | By overit

its offensive to dairy farmers and consumers.

that is insulting to the dairy farmers

Posted on 26-09-2017 13:50 | By Mein Fuhrer

who actually do all the work, this is equal to over $169,000 a week! disgusting


Posted on 26-09-2017 12:27 | By friendee

16 times the prime ministerial salary , and they want to give farmers $4 a kg, a decline in profits of $90 million, yeah give that man a bonus.He should have got a box of tui and a reminder his pay should be a reflection of the results.


Posted on 26-09-2017 11:52 | By tutae.kuri

This wage packet is so far beyond reasonable that it is obscene. Sorry Fonterra you will never be able to defend this. The Dairy Farmers are likely disgusted as well.


Posted on 26-09-2017 11:35 | By Capt_Kaveman

do not support this rort so i dont buy their products simple


Posted on 26-09-2017 10:44 | By penguin

Try convincing the unemployed, the homeless living in cars, those below the minimum wage and so on that someone is worth this amount of money. And of course, most of us contribute in one form or another to this incredible wage packet through buying Fonterras products - if we can afford them!


Posted on 26-09-2017 08:36 | By penguin


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