Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 12 December 2019

Tech chief gives up his salary and bonus forever in bet on the company's stock

Ondrej Vlcek's move signals his confidence in the anti-virus software maker Avast

Ondrej Vlcek of Avast slashed his annual salary to $1 and said he will give his $100,000 director's fee to charity. Alamy Stock Photo
Ondrej Vlcek of Avast slashed his annual salary to $1 and said he will give his $100,000 director's fee to charity. Alamy Stock Photo

Avast new chief executive and co-owner, Ondrej Vlcek, gave up his salary and bonus forever, signalling to other shareholders his confidence in the technology company that has gained 46 per cent in the past year.

A day after taking the helm of the anti-virus software maker in Prague, Mr Vlcek “indefinitely” slashed his overall annual pay to $1 (Dh3.67) and said he would donate his annual board director’s fee of $100,000 to charity, according to a statement from Avast. The chief executive now holds 2 per cent of the equity and will continue to be remunerated with shares under the company’s long-term incentive plan.

Mr Vlcek, 42, is tying his income to the market pricing of one of the world’s biggest cyber-security companies, which has outperformed most industry peers over the past year and is likely to gain further, according to all analysts tracked by Bloomberg. He replaces Vincent Steckler, who steered Avast’s global expansion and helped to take the company public in May last year in London’s biggest-ever technology-focused initial public offering.

The board has reviewed and accepted Mr Vlcek’s proposal to waive his annual salary and bonus. “We respect and commend his decision, which is a testament to his belief in Avast’s long-term value creation potential,” said Ulf Claesson, chairman of the remuneration committee.

The shares were little changed at 307 pence as of 1.34pm in London on Tuesday, valuing the company at about £3 billion (Dh13.86). The IPO pricing 14 months ago was 250 pence a share.

Updated: July 3, 2019 02:48 PM

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