Occidental in $26 mln settlement with former chairman Irani

Mon Dec 23, 2013 2:12pm EST

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Dec 23 (Reuters) - Occidental Petroleum Corp reached a $26 million settlement with its former chairman, Ray Irani, adding to the executive's billion-dollar haul over more than two decades.

Following Irani's ouster as chairman by shareholders in May, Occidental said on Monday he would get $14 million, but not a $16.8 million termination payment he had claimed. Irani will also receive certain other benefits as well as payments and equity-based awards due to all departing executives, adding up to a total of $26 million, Oxy said.

In addition, Irani, 78, will receive $1.3 million worth of annual personal benefits for life, including security service and financial planning. At the annual meeting in May, shareholder John Chevedden had highlighted the $390,000 cost of Irani's financial planning in 2012.

Steve Chazen, Oxy's chief executive since mid-2011, has said that the company was "nearly insolvent" when Irani took over as CEO in 1990. Now, with a market value around $75 billion, it ranks fourth among U.S. oil companies.

Yet Irani's pay packages have still raised eyebrows. Since the Wall Street Journal tallied his compensation over the decade to 2009 at $857 million - putting him at third place among U.S. CEOs - he went on to collect another $172 million over the past three years, according to regulatory filings.

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