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Robert Trigaux

At Raymond James, who gets paid what in upcoming May 1 handoff of CEO title



Tomjamescourtesy Wake up and good morning. In just over three months, Tampa Bay business icon Tom James steps aside as CEO of the Raymond James Financial firm he's run for decades, and hands the reins to successor Paul Reilly. It's a big transition year. And Raymond James's proxy statement, recently out to announce the upcoming shareholder's meeting, sheds some light on the James-to-Reilly handoff.

Like money. Face it. We're all curious how much the new incoming CEO of Raymond James will be paid. And we're no less interested in hearing how Tom James will be compensated as ongoing chairman of the company. The proxy, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, offers some insights:

Paulreillyraymondjamesceoasofmay12010 * Paul Reilly, currently Raymond James president, becomes CEO on May 1. The hiring letter provided for a $400,000 initial annual base salary and also guaranteed him a prorated $1.5 million bonus for fiscal 2009 and a $1.5 million bonus for fiscal 2010, which is payable even if his employment is terminated other than for "cause" before Sept. 30, 2010. Like the firm's other employees, Reilly’s employment is "at will."

Reilly also was granted 250,000 restricted shares pursuant to his hiring letter. Those shares vest on his starting date anniversaries as follows: 30 percent on May 1, 2010 (or immediately in the event he does not accede to that position), 30 percent on May 1, 2012, 20 percent on May 1, 2013 and 20 percent on May 1, 2014. 

* Once Tom James retires as CEO, he will continue working at the firm as a executive chairman. He will be paid an annual salary of $335,000 and be eligible to participate in the annual cash bonus and associated stock bonus plan. If James retires from employment but wants to continue to serve as the non-executive chairman of the board, Raymond James says it will request that the board of directors nominate him for election to the board and elect him to serve as its chairman so long as he is elected to the board by the shareholders and maintains undisclaimed beneficial holdings of five percent of the outstanding shares of our stock. As non-executive chairman, James would be paid director’s fees as are paid to any independent director, plus a chairman’s retainer.

Also in the latest proxy, it was disclosed that James was paid a total of $2.75 million in 2009 as chairman and CEO. That was down from $3.36 million he received in 2008, largely reflecting a smaller '09 bonus. Interestingly, the highest paid senior company executive last year was not the CEO or president but a senior vice president of fixed income. Van Sayler received $3.2 million.

-- Robert Trigaux, Times Business Columnist

[Last modified: Tuesday, June 1, 2010 11:27am]


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