Sainsbury’s King Only U.K. Grocery Chief to Receive Annual Bonus

J Sainsbury Plc’s outgoing Chief Executive Officer Justin King became the only head of a listed U.K. supermarket group to get a bonus this year as the industry reels from the shakeout caused by discounters Aldi and Lidl.

King, who steps down next month after a decade at the helm of the U.K.’s third largest grocer, received a bonus of 781,000 pounds ($1.3 million) as part of his overall 3.9 million pounds pay for last year, Sainsbury’s annual report showed today.

Philip Clarke at Tesco Plc, Dalton Philips at Wm Morrison Supermarkets Plc and Marks & Spencer Group Plc’s Marc Bolland all missed out on bonuses as sales and profits declined.

King’s bonus was down 22 percent on last year, while his overall pay declined by 9.6 percent to 3.95 million pounds. Sainsbury’s reported its first quarterly drop in sales in more than nine years in March as more shoppers desert the big chains.

King’s successor Mike Coupe, who also took a cut in overall pay last year, is under pressure to restore sales growth as the company dodges price cuts by competitors such as Tesco and Morrison with a focus on quality, freshness and food provenance. The grocer’s market share has dropped to 16.5 percent from 16.7 percent a year ago, Kantar Worldpanel said this week.

Coupe, who will become CEO following the company’s annual general meeting on July 9, will receive a base salary of 900,000 pounds per annum, and be entitled to an annual bonus worth as much as 110 percent of that, the annual report shows.

King waived his entitlement to a cash severance payment of as much as 1.7 million pounds, preferring to instead remain eligible for 2012 and 2013 long-term incentive plan awards.

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