Royal Mail boss Moya Greene returns £120,000 payment

Moya Greene Moya Greene is paying back money voluntarily

Related Stories

Royal Mail chief executive Moya Greene received pay and benefits worth £1.47m last financial year, the group's annual report has revealed.

Ms Greene's basic salary was unchanged at £498,000, but other benefits increased, meaning her total package went up from £1.1m in 2011-12.

However, she has agreed to return £120,000 paid towards the cost of buying a house after Business Secretary Vince Cable objected to the payment.

Mr Cable said it had been a mistake.

The annual report said Mr Cable had advised the remuneration committee that it should have secured his approval for the payment.

For its part, the committee believed it had made its decision "in good faith and in exceptional circumstances".

"When she learned of this background, the chief executive voluntarily offered to return this assistance," the report went on to say. "The remuneration committee has accepted this offer and is arranging the process for repayment."

'Additional assistance'

Apart from her basic salary for 2012-13, Canadian-born Ms Greene received £200,000 in lieu of a pension, £399,000 under a short-term incentive plan and £127,000 in contractual benefits, including medical insurance and return flights to Canada.

She was also paid £250,000 as an exceptional payment, described in the report as "additional assistance on the purchase of a home". This was offered "given the difference in residential costs between the UK and Canada".

After tax, this amounted to £120,000. This is the sum that Ms Greene is now repaying.

A Department for Business spokeswoman said Mr Cable had been "annoyed" when he learned of the payment and had "asked for and got a full apology from the chairman" of Royal Mail.

Mr Cable said the payment was "unapproved" and he was pleased that it was being returned.

"The company acted quickly to rectify the situation," he added.

"A mistake was made in not seeking my approval - I would not have approved it. The chairman is sorry. The payment is being returned. I now regard the matter closed."

Privatisation

Mr Cable, who last month unveiled plans to privatise Royal Mail, described Ms Greene as "an exceptionally good CEO", saying she and the board had his full support.

The Communication Workers Union, which fears that privatisation will lead to job losses, said the size of Ms Greene's pay package was "imitating private sector excess".

It pointed out that the total was 72 times the average pay of a postal worker.

Labour's shadow business secretary, Chuka Umunna, also criticised the £250,000 "perk" awarded to Ms Greene, which he said would be "totally unfathomable" to Royal Mail customers.

"The decision to award this housing assistance in the first place is surprising and calls into question the judgement of Royal Mail's board," he tweeted.

More on This Story

Related Stories

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites

More Business stories

RSS

Business Live

  1.  
    08:43: Market update

    Small movements early on in European share trading. London's benchmark FTSE 100 index of top companies has nudged 0.08% lower to 6,846.74 points, Frankfurt's DAX 30 shed 0.12% to 10,785.90 and the CAC 40 in Paris lost 0.07% to 4,671.76 points.

     
  2.  
    08:36: Aircraft fired on
    plane

    Flights between the United Arab Emirates and Baghdad have been suspended after a FlyDubai aircraft was hit by gunfire as it approached the Iraqi capital. No-one was injured in the attack, the budget carrier said. Etihad and Emirates have also suspended their services to Baghdad as a precaution.

     
  3.  
    08:33: Economy BBC Breakfast
    Miliband

    "There are big economic and social challenges," says Labour leader Ed Miliband on Breakfast. "They [the Conservative party] say everything's fixed... I don't agree. People are £1,600 worse off at the end of this parliament than the beginning."

     
  4.  
    08:28: Welfare to work BBC Radio 4

    Did you hear the starting gun? It's 100 days until the general election, so campaigning begins. Mr Cameron's talking on Today about proposals to cut the benefit cap to £23,000. Will that mean more people go out and find work? The Prime Minister says that around 40% of people that have been effected by the current cap have gone out and sought work. He says the government will use the money saved from reducing the benefit cap - if the Conservatives win the election - to create 3 million apprenticeships.

     
  5.  
    08:17: GDP preview BBC Radio 4

    Economic professor Richard Portes of the Centre for Economic Policy Research takes up Mr Littlewood's surgical metaphor in relation to the government's economic policies but says "the patient almost died". The actual proportion of people in work is still lower than before the financial crisis while wages are 6% lower than they should be, he says. If the government points to the way in which the deficit has been handled its story ahead of the election isn't very good at all, he adds.

     
  6.  
    Apprenticeships Via Email Chris Pocock, a Business live reader from Sheffield

    "The pay of apprentices at Ford Dagenham is not typical. The government's own evidence to the Low Pay Commission indicates shockingly high levels of non-compliance by employers in paying apprentices the national minimum wage."

     
  7.  
    07:53: Carpetright sales

    Carpetright has reported a 7.5% rise in UK like-for-like sales in the three months to 24 January. It has also kept its full year profit guidance unchanged. Like-for-like sale in the rest of Europe rose 1.7%, it adds.

     
  8.  
    07:40: GDP preview BBC Radio 4

    The government hasn't stuck to its deficit plans, says Mark Littlewood on Today, but it has stuck to its spending plans. We have several more years before we will be living within our means but "the direction of travel" is the most important thing. "If the government had said to hell with this, we're going to carry on as before, then markets would have had more of a wobble," he says, but a deficit reduction target of five years achieved in eight, while disappointing, is far less of a concern.

     
  9.  
    07:25: Apprenticeships BBC Breakfast
    Cameron

    Prime Minister David Cameron is on Breakfast. He's talking about apprenticeships: "we overplayed university and downplayed apprenticeships" he says, whereas "both are important." He says after visiting apprentices at Ford in Dagenham trainees can earn £30,000 after four years. Does that match your experience, readers? bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk

     
  10.  
    Facebook down Via Twitter Rory Cellan-Jones Technology correspondent

    "Hacker group Lizard Squad -@lizardmafia - claiming it's taken down Facebook, Instagram and other sites."

     
  11.  
    07:14: Aer Lingus bid

    British Airways owner IAG says the board of Aer Lingus has indicated "that the financial terms of [its] proposal are at a level at which it would be willing to recommend [the takeover approach] to Aer Lingus shareholders" after Monday's €2.55 per share offer for the Irish carrier. Aer Lingus appears to be letting IAG have a look at its accounts, granting it access to "perform a limited period of confirmatory due diligence."

     
  12.  
    07:12: Facebook back!
    facebook

    Facebook appears to be back. Panic over, everyone.

     
  13.  
    07:10: Facebook down

    Facebook is down in France, Australia, Spain and Singapore, readers and colleagues tell us. A colleague is busy furiously poking the organisation to find out what's going on. Reader Kath Olliffe in Sydney writes in: "It's a strange feeling because you kind of want to post a status that FB is down and what are we all to do. You want to look up FB to see if there is something wrong with FB!"

     
  14.  
    07:07: GDP preview BBC Radio 4

    The latest estimate of UK economic growth will be released at 9:30 today and the economic recovery is looking increasingly likely to be the government's main story during the election. Has it a good story to tell? Mark Littlewood, director general at the Institute of Economic Affairs, tells Today that broadly, yes it does. He thinks the government will say: "we're only about half way through the surgery and May isn't the time to change the surgeon".

     
  15.  
    06:55: GDP preview BBC Breakfast
    stoke

    Not to be out-done by Wake Up to Money's trip to Aston, Breakfast has sent presenter Steph McGovern to a ceramics factory in Stoke to see if the predicted GDP growth is benefiting people. Lisa Grimley says supermarket prices remain high, especially food. Energy bills need to come down before things improve. Since the credit crisis, petrol prices have reduced and that's about it. "It's a struggle for young people."

     
  16.  
    Facebook down Via Email Steven Weerdenburg Business live reader

    It's 1.50 am and Facebook is down in Toronto. Looks like I might have to go to sleep after all.

     
  17.  
    06:47: GDP preview Radio 5 live

    Wake Up to Money presenter Adam Parsons is in East End Foods in Aston, near Birmingham. "It's like being in Terminal 2" he says. He's there in preparation for today's GDP figure. Jason Wouhra, director of the firm, says stable interest rates have helped confidence in investing. Curry ingredients, corn flakes and coke are the more popular items.

     
  18.  
    06:38: Facebook down
    offline

    Forget the GDP figures. This is much bigger news. Facebook is offline everyone. Facebook is down! Is this just a UK problem? Get in touch and let us know at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk or tweet us @bbcbusiness to tell us how you are coping.

     
  19.  
    06:32: GDP preview Radio 5 live

    Virginie Maisonneuve of asset manager Pimco is on Wake Up to Money talking about GDP. She expects 0.6% growth in this fourth quarter first estimate from the Office for National Statistics. GDP is forecast by a number of experts to have grown by 2.6% for the year, the same level as in 2007 and up from 1.7% in 2013.

     
  20.  
    06:23: Market update Radio 5 live

    Virginie Maisonneuve of asset manager Pimco is talking on Wake Up to Money about the markets. They were mainly up yesterday. Minority parties taking power in Europe has "not been taken seriously" by the market she says.

     
  21.  
    06:07: Greek election fallout Radio 5 live

    More from Yannis Zabetakis, a lecturer at the university of Athens, is on Wake Up to Money. Youth unemployment at 50% is another dangerous signal for the country, he says. He also denies Greece is a special case. While there's growth in Britain under austerity, the wealth gap is widening and there are more people in poverty, he says.

     
  22.  
    06:02: Greek election fallout Radio 5 live
    A supporter of Alexis Tsipras, leader of Syriza left-wing party, holds the Greek and French flag

    Yannis Zabetakis, a lecturer at the university of Athens, is on 5 live talking about the debt burden on Greece. More than a million unemployed means paying off the debt is very difficult, he says. Employment prospects for his students are very poor and he recommends setting up an export company or going abroad. Salaries are going down and tax up, he adds.

     
  23.  
    06:01: Matthew West Business Reporter

    Morning folks. Get in touch at bizlivepage@bbc.co.uk ot tweet us at @bbcbusiness.

     
  24.  
    06:00: Howard Mustoe Business reporter

    Good morning. At 09:30 we expect the first estimate for fourth quarter gross domestic product for the UK. There'll also be company results from 07:00. Stay with us.

     

Features

  • Devi AsmadiredjaHermit queen

    The woman who left Germany for a gorge on the Chechen border


  • Fishermen on lake in MalawiAfter the flood

    Water everywhere in Malawi and not a drop to drink


  • Part of a Thomas Greve picture of the liberation of BuchenwaldBearing witness

    How a young survivor's drawings helped bring the Holocaust to life


  • Architect's drawing of the Great Mosque of AlgiersSky scraper

    Why Algeria is building the world's tallest minaret


From BBC Capital

Programmes

  • Robbie RogersHARDtalk Watch

    Gay footballer Robbie Rogers on locker room homophobia and the ‘pack mentality’ in soccer

Copyright © 2015 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.