UPDATE 2-Founder Stelios votes against easyJet director pay
LONDON, Feb 13 (Reuters) - EasyJet founder Stelios Haji-Ioannou voted against the 2013 pay plans of the British budget airline's directors on Thursday, in the latest broadside from the company's largest investor. Haji-Ioannou, better known as Stelios, has had several disputes with easyJet's board in recent years and has repeatedly criticized multi-million pound pay packages awarded to its top executives. Of 326 million votes cast, 147 million voted against the remuneration package. Thomson Reuters data indicates Stelios owns 147 million shares through a 25.9 percent stake and an 11 percent family holding through a company called Polys Holdings. Stelios founded easyJet in 1995 before quitting the board in 2010 after a dispute over strategy. Since then he has been critical of many of the airline's plans. EasyJet has performed strongly in recent months and reported annual profits up 51 percent in its financial year to last September. Its shares have risen 75 percent in the last year. According to the company's annual report, published in December, easyJet's chief executive Carolyn McCall in 2013 was paid a base salary of 665,000 pounds ($1.10 million) and earned a total 6.4 million pounds including a bonus and other benefit and share awards, a figure nearly double than the year before. McCall, who received the lowest protest vote of all the directors, is popular among the majority of shareholders given the strong growth in annual dividends and profit since she took the helm in July 2010. Last year did not see a repeat of the "shareholder spring" of 2012 when shareholder activism was high as investors joined forces to protest against pay packages and executives. This year's season of annual meetings has just begun. Some 148 shares were voted against easyJet's directors' pay plans at last year's annual general meeting.
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