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‘Fat cat’ pay director at Countrywide to step down, claims

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Thu 06 Dec 2018

‘Fat cat’ pay director at Countrywide to step down, claims

The Countrywide director  who drew up a controversial £20m executive pay plan is to step down after an investor revolt.

Sky News is reporting that Countrywide has hired headhunters to identify a new non-executive director to replace Cathy Turner as chair of the company’s remuneration committee.

Turner has been on the group’s board and has overseen remuneration since 2013.

Sky says it unclear on Wednesday whether she would step down from the Countrywide board altogether or just relinquish her responsibility for setting boardroom pay, although one insider said the former scenario was more likely.

The pay plan would have paid out huge sums to executives, including to executive chairman Peter Long, who would have received shares worth over over £6m. Paul Creffield, group managing director, and chief financial officer Himanshu Raja could have received shares worth over £8m and £7 respectively.

Countrywide was forced to withdraw the scheme when it became plain that institutional investors would not support it as part of Countrywide’s turnaround plan.

Countrywide shares are starting trading today at around 9.4p.