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“Beware of any company where leadership pay is not linked to performance”

It’s rare for CEOs to chide their peers’ outlandish pay packages — especially as they throw rocks out of coffers — but Lucid Motors CEO Peter Rawlinson was sharply criticized by his EV rival Elon Musk on Monday after taking the title of the highest earned. paid executive in the automotive industry.

“Beware of any company where leadership rewards are not tied to performance,” said Tesla’s CEO wrote to X in response to a message about Rawlinson’s wages.

Rawlinson received a $379 million compensation package in 2022 for his role at luxury EV maker Lucid, including a base salary of $575,000, $5.5 million in stock options and an incredible $373 million in stock awards, according to a new CEO compensation survey from Automotive News and Equivalent.

Despite Musk’s criticism, Rawlinson earned his massive pay package after hitting market cap targets for Lucid early last year, SEC filings show. Lucid, like 88% of the top 250 publicly traded U.S. companies, now uses performance-based compensation for at least a portion of executive compensation.

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“One of the reasons we prefer pay-for-performance models is that they are generally viewed more favorably by shareholders to the extent that achieving financial performance is tied to shareholder value creation,” says Noah Kaplan, president of the company. management consultancy FW Cook, told Fortune of the trend in March.

Still, it makes sense that Musk would believe Rawlinson’s pay wasn’t tied to performance. After all, Lucid’s shares fell more than 82% in 2022, and the company posted total sales of just $608.2 million. Comparing Rawlinson’s salary to his peers in the automotive industry, his latest compensation package seems on purpose. Rawlinson’s total pay in 2022 was 11 times greater than the $34 million earned by GM’s second-highest-paid automotive CEO, Mary Barra, and 21 times greater than the $18.3 million earned by Ford CEO Jim Farley. deserved.

CEOs of other EV startups are also nowhere near Rawlinson’s total pay. Robert Scaringe, CEO of Rivian Automotive, earned roughly $1 million in 2022, even though his company is now worth more than $22 billion, over 50% more than Lucid Motors’ roughly $14 billion.

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By comparison, Musk made no money directly from his role as CEO of Tesla last year, but the billionaire has been criticized for the $23 billion bonus he received in 2021 after meeting performance targets for both earnings and stock price appreciation. – a deal that was unprecedented when it was struck in 2018. And as Tesla’s largest shareholder, Musk continues to benefit greatly from the growth in the company’s share prices.

This story was originally on Fortune.com

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