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Facebook CEO Zuckerberg’s Base Salary Falls to $1

Facebook CEO Zuckerberg’s Base Salary Falls to $1 as Stock Soars
Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook Inc., at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 18, 2013. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg

Mark Zuckerberg has decided he’s a $1-a-year man.

Zuckerberg, who is Facebook Inc.’s chief executive officer and also the 22nd richest person in the world as ranked by the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, was paid $1 in salary for 2013, according to a regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission yesterday. That’s down from a base salary of $503,205 in 2012, the year that Facebook went public.

Zuckerberg is following the well worn path of other Silicon Valley technology moguls who also chose to take on the symbolic annual salary of $1 after they were already wealthy. Apple Inc.’s late co-founder Steve Jobs helped popularize the practice, which is today also espoused by Google Inc. co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, among others. All own sizable equity stakes in their own companies.

Zuckerberg, whose wealth totals around $27 billion, owns Facebook shares that give him 61.6 percent of voting power in the Menlo Park, California-based social network, according to the filing. He saw his net worth balloon last year as Facebook’s stock more than doubled in value. The 29-year-old has ramped up his public service and philanthropy, including starting a group called to connect the world to the Web.

Private Planes

Zuckerberg’s total compensation last year was $653,165, down from $1.99 million in 2012. The amount, besides the $1 salary, was for the passenger fees, fuel, crew and catering costs for his use of private planes for personal reasons, as part of his security program, according to the filing.

The CEO also made $3.3 billion last year after exercising stock options to purchase 60 million shares, according to the filing. Zuckerberg offered 41.35 million of those shares in a secondary offering by Facebook in December. At the time, the company said Zuckerberg would use the majority of the proceeds to pay for the taxes incurred in connection with the transaction. He also gifted 18 million shares to charity.

Other Facebook leaders also saw their compensation fall from 2012 levels. Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg received $16.2 million in total compensation in 2013, compared with $26.2 million a year earlier. She became a billionaire in January as Facebook’s shares soared, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Chief Financial Officer David Ebersman made $10.5 million in compensation last year, compared with the $17.5 million in 2012. Vice President David Fischer’s compensation totaled $8 million last year, down from $12 million in 2012, while Chief Technology Officer Mike Schroepfer gained $12.6 million last year, down from $20.7 million a year earlier.

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