Two top Canada pension funds to oppose CIBC's executive pay plan

Fri Apr 17, 2015 5:50pm EDT
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By Euan Rocha and John Tilak

TORONTO, April 17 (Reuters) - Two of Canada's largest pension funds, shareholders of Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, said on Friday they will demonstrate their unhappiness with CIBC's executive pay structure at the lender's annual meeting next week.

The Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board, vexed by multimillion-dollar payments to two retired executives, plans to withhold support for members of CIBC's compensation committee and to oppose the bank's pay structure in a nonbinding vote.

CIBC named Victor Dodig as its chief executive last year, replacing Gerry McCaughey, who retired in September 2014. Richard Nesbitt, who was CIBC's chief operating officer, retired a month later.

Earlier this month, CIBC announced that the two executives together stand to receive roughly C$25 million ($20.5 million) in total in post-retirement pay due to an acceleration of their retirement timetables.

"We have significant concerns with the decisions taken by the Management Resources and Compensation Committee over the past year with respect to the succession planning and post-employment arrangements made with both Mr. McCaughey and Mr. Nesbitt," Teachers' said in a statement.

The bank declined comment.

Teachers', one of Canada's top pension funds, owns a fairly small stake in CIBC according to Thomson Reuters data.

Separately, the larger Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) disclosed that it intends to also vote against CIBC's executive compensation stance. CPPIB indicated, however, it plans to vote in favor of all of CIBC's directors at the bank's annual shareholder meeting in Calgary on April 23.   Continued...