ATA chief executive Mick Davis banked a total pay of £27m last year, according to the company’s annual report.
News of the bumper pay deal will inflame the simmering debate over bumper executive remuneration packages. While the FTSE 100 mining company boss’s basic pay and bonus for 2009 came to £4.9m, his earnings were massively inflated by the sale of share options dating back to 2001, as well as deferred incentives relating to performance from 2005 to 2008.
The news follows the revelation that Bart Becht, the chief executive of Reckitt Benckiser, took home £92m in cash and shares in one year.
Ministers and business leaders have waded into the row over executive pay. CBI director general, Richard Lambert, warned that bosses risked being regarded as “aliens” living in “a different galaxy”. Lord Myners, City minister, has urged the Financial Services Authority to address the role of shareholders in running organisations and restraining pay.