Facebook Inc (FB) CEO Zuckerberg Earned Record $2.3 Billion in 2012


CEOs in the U.S. are breaking records for how much they’re being paid, and Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s Mark Zuckerberg tops the list with almost $2.3 billion in compensation last year. That’s according to this year’s pay survey conducted by GMI Ratings for U.S. CEOs.

Zuckerberg brings home the big bucks

According to GMI, Zuckerberg’s salary in 2012 was $503,000, and he had a $266,000 bonus on top of that. But those amounts were dwarfed by the size of the Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) founder and CEO’s stock options last year, which added up to about $2.27 billion all on their own. All of that compensation means that he earned over $6 million per day.

GMI said Zuckerberg exercised 60 million stock options which were granted in 2005 and became fully vested by 2010. The strike price for those options was only six cents. And he didn’t just let all of his stock profits sit in paper. At Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB)’s initial public offering last year, he immediately sold off over $ billion worth of his shares.

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After stock options, the second biggest part of Zuckerberg’s compensation last year was perks like using the company aircraft and paying for security. He received approximately $1.2 million in perks alone last year.

Zuckerberg part of a larger trend

The firm reported that this is the first year any executive brought home more than $1 billion in a year, and Zuckerberg almost tripled that number. There was just one other CEO whose compensation passed $1 billion. Richard Kinder, CEO of Kinder Morgan Energy Partners LP (NYSE:KMP)’s salary was just $1, but the stock he received was worth over $1.1 billion.

The two of them far surpassed other CEOs, although Zuckerberg and Kinder are part of a larger trend among CEOs, according to GMI. The firm reports that this is the first year all ten of the top earning CEOs on its list actually brought home at least $100 million. It says that overall, CEO pay rose 8.47% “at the median across a matched sample of more than 2,200 North American CEOs.” It recorded S&P 500 pay as rising 19.65%.

Third on GMI’s list was Mel Karmazin, CEO of Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI). His compensation added up to more than $255 million. Liberty Media Corp (NASDAQ:LMCA) CEO Gregory Maffei brought in almost $255 million, while Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) CEO Tim Cook took home a “mere” $143.8 million.

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