EASYJET BOSS Carolyn McCall received pay and bonuses worth £7.7 million despite deteriorating levels of customer satisfaction and punctuality, the airline’s annual report revealed yesterday.
McCall oversaw a fourth year in a row of record financial results as pre-tax profits soared 21.5 per cent for the year to the end of September.
But the increase was not quite as stellar as the rise of over 50 per cent achieved the year before, meaning the annual bonus element of pay was lower.
This was also hit by on-time performance being slightly worse – with 85 per cent of arrivals within 15 minutes compared to 87.4 per cent a year before – as well as customer satisfaction, down from 82.7 per cent to 78 per cent.
But the budget carrier did better at keeping a lid on costs this time after it was hit by adverse weather conditions in the previous financial year.
McCall, pictured, received £677,000 in salary, up from £665,000 a year before, plus pension and benefits worth £52,000. Her annual bonus was £1.03m, down from £1.15m. Her total pay package also included a long-term bonus share award worth £5.92m due to vest in January.
The report also showed that the chief executive’s total pay package for last year was £7.8m, higher than the £6.4m reported at the time.
This was because last year’s sum included a share award that vested in 2014 with the share price higher than it was when the figures were published.
In addition to this year’s £7.7m total for McCall, she was granted long-term performance-linked share awards worth up to nearly £2m – to be paid out following the end of the 2015-16 financial year.
The carrier posted a profit of £581m for the year to end-September, in line with an upgraded forecast it made last month.
Cheap fares have helped EasyJet and rival Ryanair win market share in Europe’s short-haul travel sector from traditional airlines such as Air France-KLM and Lufthansa, which have recently announced plans to expand their own budget services. Last month, EasyJet said almost 50 per cent of its winter seats had already been booked, slightly up on last year.
Announcing the results last month, McCall said the group had “opened up clear blue sky between us and our competitors – both legacy and low-cost”.
The airline said it had increased the proportion of bookings made by existing customers to 57 per cent, up from 50 per cent in 2010.
This meant more than 37 million passengers were rebooking each year compared with 25 million four years ago, a 50 per cent increase. The figure for business customers was 62 per cent.
The group said customer loyalty helped it both grow revenue and keep a lid on costs as it was cheaper to retain existing fliers than find new ones. It has recently launched a frequent-flyer scheme to reward its most reliable passengers.