ABB lifts pay for new CEO Spiesshofer by a quarter in 2013

ZURICH, March 9 Sun Mar 9, 2014 7:55am EDT

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ZURICH, March 9 (Reuters) - ABB paid new chief executive Ulrich Spiesshofer nearly 5.8 million Swiss francs ($6.60 million) last year, a quarter more than the previous year, according to the industrial conglomerate's annual report.

Under Spiesshofer, who in September was promoted to overall CEO from head of the Swiss firm's discrete automation and motion (DAM) arm, ABB is seeking to sell several non-core businesses in deals that could raise more than $1 billion, people familiar with the matter told Reuters last month.

Spiesshofer wasn't the highest-paid ABB executive in 2013: that honour went to Diane de Saint Victor, the company's chief lawyer, who earned nearly 6.8 million francs in 2013.

That included 150,000 ABB shares valued at 3.1 million francs as a "special retention" grant for de Saint Victor, who joined the board of Barclays last year.

Outgoing CEO Joe Hogan earned 4.7 million francs until Sept. 15, when he was replaced by Spiesshofer.

Brice Koch, the former head of ABB's power unit where the company warned on fourth-quarter profits in January, earned 3 million francs through November, before he left to take the top job at OC Oerlikon.

Pay is a closely-watched topic in Switzerland, where voters last year backed some of the world's strictest controls on executive remuneration, forcing public companies to give shareholders a binding vote on compensation.

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