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Apple's Peter Oppenheimer ranks as highest-paid CFO for 2012

updated 10:49 am EDT, Wed May 8, 2013

Company shells out to retain key executives

Apple's Peter Oppenheimer was the highest-paid chief financial officer during 2012, according to Bloomberg. The executive received compensation worth a theoretical $68.6 million, roughly 16 times what Apple CEO Tim Cook received for the year. By comparison, Oppenheimer's closest competition -- Oracle CFO Safra Catz -- was given $51.7 million, while Google CFO Patrick Pichette was granted $38.7 million.

Most of Oppenheimer's compensation came in the form of stock grants, which are not redeemable for years to come, are dependent on his continued employment with the company and whose value will fluctuate with the stock market. Apple approved large grants to several top executives in 2011 and 2012, hoping to get them to stay with the company for several more years. Cook, for instance, must remain CEO until 2021 to get the full value of his compensation package.

The company appears to have been concerned that people like Cook and Oppenheimer might leave in the aftermath of Steve Jobs' resignation and death. Even with large handouts to executives, the company has seen some important departures, including two at its own behest -- iOS head Scott Forstall and retail chief John Browett were both pushed out of Apple late last year.

by MacNN Staff



  1. coffeetime

    Senior User

    Joined: 11-15-06

    The high salary these people get paid, it makes me vomit.

  1. bkoch

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 03-20-99

    When do Americans realize that nobody ever can earn a salary like this? There is simply no rational argument in favor of this.

  1. Charles Martin

    MacNN Editor

    Joined: 08-04-01

    Both of you need to re-read the article, and perhaps educate yourselves a little about what stock grants are. Oppenheimer did not earn a "salary" of $68.6 million. His *salary* I'd have to look up, but if it's on par with the other senior Apple execs, it's about $300,000.

    The $68.6 million is a *theoretical* figure based on the idea that his total stock grants (which stretch out over years and years and can't be touched in the short term) might be worth *as much as* that amount *IF* he could cash all of them in TODAY.

    Make no mistake, Oppenheimer will likely end up a very rich man at the end of all this, but that "money" is years away from being in his pocket, and is entirely dependent on what the stock market does with AAPL -- and what the US economy does -- when he can (and does) finally cash out. It could be worth *more* at that point, but it could equally be *worthless* if, for example, the economy crashes again like it did in 2008.

  1. ctt61

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 06-21-05

    and why you are worrying about what they made, Any of you will jump at this opportunity and earn just like them.
    I do not see any one rich or poor said that they get pay too much. they will voluntarily give all the money back.
    They ran one of the most profitable company. many jobs are created.
    The same congress that complain ceo get paid too much should look at themselves.
    Our country is on Debt anf it get bigger.
    Goverment get bigger
    they pass law to get money from hard working american.

  1. bkoch

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: 03-20-99

    I am aware that this is theoretical only, but chances are that he will get at least a couple of millions out of it and that is still too much.

    @ctt61: Yes, probably I would take it as well. The point is, no company should (have to) offer this much compensation for any individual. Never, ever. This is an American concept and it's very very wrong.

    Regarding taxes: If Apple and other large companies wouldn't have the opportunity to evade paying taxes as much as they do now, then paying taxes wouldn't be a problem for any hard working American because it would be on an acceptable level. It fits in the big picture: CFOs manage to not pay hundreds of millions of taxes so that they can reward them with insane compensations. And the 99% suffer.

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