GM CEO Barra was highest-paid Detroit 3 auto exec in 2019

Kalea Hall
The Detroit News

Detroit — General Motors Co. CEO Mary Barra received $21.6 million in compensation last year making her the highest-paid executive among the Detroit Three automakers.

Barra's 2019 compensation was slightly below the $21.87 million she made in 2018, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing released Monday.

Ford Motor Co. CEO Jim Hackett in 2019 received $17.36 million in total compensation. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV CEO Mike Manley in 2019 received $12.46 million (11.45 million euros) in compensation for his first full year leading the Italian American automaker.

GM CEO Mary Barra  received $21.6 million in compensation last year, making her the highest-paid executive among the Detroit Three automakers.

Barra, 58, made a base salary of $2.1 million in 2019, the same she as in 2018, and $12.1 million in stock awards, up from $11 million in 2018. 

Barra also received a $2.7 million incentive-based bonus for 2019. Barra's bonus fell below the company's target of $4.2 million. The bonus was down from the $4.5 million she received in 2018 due to a decrease in automotive free cash-flow and adjusted earnings; those factors used to calculate the incentive bonus were hurt by a 40-day United Auto Workers strike in which GM lost more than $3 billion. GM made $6.7 billion in net income on revenue of $137.2 billion in 2019.

GM also spent $340,225 on other benefits for Barra, including $199,839 for travel and $87,347 on security.

The median employee total compensation at GM in 2019 was $106,715, making Barra's pay ratio 203-to-1.

Pay for other GM executives in 2019 includes:

  • Dhivya Suryadevara, executive vice president and chief financial officer: Received about $6.77 million compared with $5.5 million in total compensation in 2018. She received a base salary of $1 million in 2019 after receiving an increase from $900,000 in January 2019 based on a market analysis. Her 2019 base salary is up from the $668,100 she received in 2018 after starting with the company in September of that year. Her $875,000 incentive-based bonus in 2019 was down from the $1.19 million bonus she received in 2018.
  • Mark Reuss, president: For his first year as president of the company, Reuss received about $8.2 million in total compensation. He received about $7.36 million in 2018 as executive vice president of global product group and Cadillac. Reuss' base salary as president was $1.2 million. He received a $1.05 million incentive-based bonus, a decline from the $1.59 million bonus he received in 2018. 
  • Barry Engle, executive vice president and president of North America since April 2019, replacing Alan Batey: Earned $5.1 million in total compensation. His base salary was $800,000. He received a $650,000 incentive-based bonus.
  • Alan Batey, advisor and former executive vice president and president of GM North America: Made $5.31 million, down slightly from $5.34 million in 2018. He received a base salary of $1.025 million like he did in 2018. He received an incentive of $730,300, which was down from the $1.23 million he received in 2018.

This year, because of the coronavirus' impact on the company, executives will receive a 20% salary deferral and a 5% reduction in their cash compensation; most senior executives will receive a 10% reduction. GM's directors also will see a 20% reduction in their board compensation.

GM also cut its salaried workforce's pay by 20%, but has promised to pay them back with interest.

On Monday, GM suspended its quarterly cash dividend on its common stock and stopped its share buyback program to conserve cash amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

GM's first-quarter earnings, which will detail the impact of the pandemic on the Detroit automaker's business, will be released May 6.

Twitter: @bykaleahall