FRANKFURT, April 24 (Reuters) - Shareholders should vote against Munich Re’s pay policy for its management board at the German reinsurer’s annual meeting on Wednesday, shareholder adviser Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS) said.
ISS said Munich Re’s pay packages for its board were not transparent enough and also said that while performance criteria were disclosed, there was only “vague information” on the targets.
“As only the supervisory board is privy to these targets, shareholders are unable to evaluate what it means for these targets to be achieved,” ISS said in a report for Munich Re shareholders.
Munich Re said in a statement on Monday that it does not publish information on management targets because of the relevance of such information for competitors.
Bluechip companies across Europe have been reigning in executive pay in response to pressure from shareholders who have become increasingly critical of “fat cat” pay deals.
Earlier this month, BP cut chief executive Bob Dudley’s 2016 pay package by 40 percent after shareholders opposed the oil company’s pay plans.
ISS, which has considerable influence over shareholder opinion, also highlighted that Munich Re’s supervisory board was allowed to adjust variable pay, while European market standards dictate that compensation policy should avoid discretionary compensation.
In addition, ISS expressed concern that some members of the Munich Re’s compensation committee had served on the company’s board for as long as 17 years, throwing into question the committee’s independence.
“Sitting on a supervisory board for such a long time – and partly even on the compensation committee – could pose the risk of limiting or losing a director’s independent assessment,” ISS said. (Reporting by Tom Sims; editing by David Clarke and Jane Merriman)