Section B – TWO questions ONLY to be attemptedFive years ago, George Woof was appointed ch

Section B – TWO questions ONLY to be attempted

Five years ago, George Woof was appointed chief executive offi cer (CEO) of Tomato Bank, one of the largest global banks. Mr Woof had a successful track record in senior management in America and his appointment was considered very fortunate for the company. Analysts rated him as one of the world’s best bankers and the other directors of Tomato Bank looked forward to his appointment and a signifi cant strengthening of the business.

One of the factors needed to secure Mr Woof’s services was his reward package. Prior to his acceptance of the position, Tomato Bank’s remuneration committee (comprised entirely of non-executives) received a letter from Mr Woof saying that because his track record was so strong, they could be assured of many years of sustained growth under his leadership. In discussions concerning his pension, however, he asked for a generous non-performance related pension settlement to be written into his contract so that it would be payable whenever he decided to leave the company (subject to a minimum term of two years) and regardless of his performance as CEO. Such was the euphoria about his appointment that his request was approved. Furthermore in the hasty manner in which Mr Woof’s reward package was agreed, the split of his package between basic and performance-related components was not carefully scrutinised. Everybody on the remuneration committee was so certain that he would bring success to Tomato Bank that the individual details of his reward package were not considered important.

In addition, the remuneration committee received several letters from Tomato Bank’s fi nance director, John Temba, saying, in direct terms, that they should offer Mr Woof ‘whatever he wants’ to ensure that he joins the company and that the balance of benefi ts was not important as long as he joined. Two of the non-executive directors on the remuneration committee were former colleagues of Mr Woof and told the fi nance director they would take his advice and make sure they put a package together that would ensure Mr Woof joined the company.

Once in post, Mr Woof led an excessively aggressive strategy that involved high growth in the loan and mortgage books fi nanced from a range of sources, some of which proved unreliable. In the fi fth year of his appointment, the failure of some of the sources of funds upon which the growth of the bank was based led to severe fi nancing diffi culties at Tomato Bank. Shareholders voted to replace George Woof as CEO. They said he had been reckless in exposing the company to so much risk in growing the loan book without adequately covering it with reliable sources of funds.

When he left, the press reported that despite his failure in the job, he would be leaving with what the newspapers referred to as an ‘obscenely large’ pension. Some shareholders were angry and said that Mr Woof was being ‘rewarded for failure’. When Mr Woof was asked if he might voluntarily forego some of his pension in recognition of his failure in the job, he refused, saying that he was contractually entitled to it and so would be keeping it all.

Required:

(a) Criticise the performance of Tomato Bank’s remuneration committee in agreeing Mr Woof’s reward package. (10 marks)

(b) Describe the components of an appropriately designed executive reward package and explain why a more balanced package of benefi ts should have been used to reward Mr Woof. (10 marks)

(c) Construct an ethical case for Mr Woof to voluntarily accept a reduction in his pension value in recognition of his failure as chief executive of Tomato Bank. (5 marks)

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  • 发布时间:2018-12-07
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