Top earner at Dentsu International collects $16 million pay package

Payout included more than $7 million from 'long-term incentive schemes.'

The $16m pay package is a record for a director of the international business.

The highest-paid director at Dentsu International earned a pay package of £13.5 million ($16 million) in 2021, annual accounts show.

The unidentified director was paid £7.1 million ($8.3 million) in “remuneration”, £6.3 million ($7.3 million) from “long-term incentive schemes” and £100,000 ($116,000) in pension contribution by the U.K.-based company, which runs Dentsu’s operations outside its home market of Japan.

The £13.5m pay package is a record for a director of Dentsu International since the company was created, following Dentsu’s acquisition of Britain’s Aegis Group in 2013. In 2020, the top earner was paid £5.1m, in 2019 the amount was £2.3m and in 2018 it was £11.1m.

The board had nine directors during 2021: a mix of executives from the international business and the Japanese parent.

They included Wendy Clark, the chief executive of Dentsu International since September 2020, and several longer-serving Dentsu executives, including Tim Andree, the chair of Dentsu Group Inc.; Nick Priday, CFO of Dentsu International and David Williams, former global chief executive of customer experience agency Merkle.

A spokesperson for Dentsu International declined to comment on the identity of the highest paid director or the accounts.

The accounts filed at U.K. Companies House showed Dentsu International performed strongly during 2021 as it recovered from the pandemic.

Executives from Merkle also received a significant number of shares that vested, following an accelerated buyout of the agency in 2020, according to the accounts.

Pay packages for the highest paid director at other large agency groups varied considerably last year, despite similar organic revenue growth rates – from $20 million at Omnicom and $17.4 million at Interpublic to £4.8 million ($5.6 million) at WPP and €2.9 million ($2.9 million) at Publicis Groupe.

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