Outgoing ESB chief received €650k

For his last 11 months as chief executive of the ESB, Padraig McManus received over €650,000, despite giving up over €140,000 in salary entitlements.

The details of Mr McManus’s pay were included in the ESB’s annual report, which was published yesterday. The accounts show a strong financial performance in 2011, with operating profit rising to €469m.

Mr McManus received €528,886 in remuneration in 2010, but a combination of a €99,000 payment in lieu of notice and a €84,199 bonus paid in respect of 2009 ballooned his take-home pay for his last 11 months in the job to €674,887.

Mr McManus also shared in an expenses pot worth over €100,000 with his fellow directors, who are entitled to claim for travel expenses, subsistence, entertainment, as well as subscriptions and conferences.

The new chief executive, Pat O’Doherty, has had his salary capped at €295,000.

Pre-tax profit at the ESB was €78.8m for the year, compared to a loss of €89.2m in 2010. In 2010, the ESB made a €510m pension contribution, which affected profits.

Chairman Lochlann Quinn said: “Notwithstanding difficulties nationally and internationally, ESB raised a total of €1.3bn in the markets in 2011 to fund our investment programme of almost €1bn per annum, most of it in critical energy infrastructure in Ireland.

Mr Quinn said the board of the ESB is recommending a dividend of €72.5m, bringing total dividends to the exchequer over the last decade close to €1bn.

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