M&S shareholders revolt over Steve Rowe’s bonus

M&S has received backlash following former CEO Steve Rowe’s recent bonus, with almost 30% of investors voting against the approval of its remuneration report.

The annual general meeting saw almost a third of shareholders rebelling against the £1.6 million bumper bonus which more than doubled Rowe’s take-home pay to £2.6 million.

The disapproval came as the retailer had still not returned dividend payouts prior to vote taking place at the AGM on 5 July.

M&S said the remuneration committee would engage with investors to further understand their concerns but insists it has acted in the interests of shareholders when Rowe’s bonus had been awarded.

READ MORE: M&S reveals healthy food remains a priority despite cost-of-living pressures

“The board strongly believes that it has acted in shareholders’ interests and consistent with the values and integrity of the  business in relation to Steve Rowe’s remuneration,” the company said.

“Steve served 37 years with the business, the last six years as chief executive officer…He worked full time and with total energy as chief executive officer well beyond the end of the financial year.”

“All eligible colleagues have received a bonus this year, the first since 2017, in recognition of the strong financial performance in the year. It would have been wholly wrong to exclude Steve from this as the performance was delivered under his leadership.

“To have denied him the bonus because he helped support an orderly and organised succession that was announced just three weeks before the year-end would have shown bad faith to a great servant of the business and would not have been in any way in shareholders’ interests.”

The news comes as Sainsbury’s is also being put under pressure this week as its shareholders are demanding the Big 4 grocer to pay all employees and contracted workers the national living wage.

Click here to sign up to Grocery Gazette’s free daily email newsletter



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.



Sign up to our daily newsletter to get all the latest grocery news and insights direct to your inbox.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.