Media bosses among top 50 highest paid CEOs, with Seven James Warburton leading the way

Three media executives are among the 50 highest paid CEOs in the country, with Seven West Media boss James Warburton the most handsomely rewarded of the trio, according The Australian Financial Review’s annual pay survey.

Warburton saw his salary sky rocket to $4.57 million in the year to June 2021, a whopping rise of $3.23 million, or 241%. This put him at 40th on the list.

Not far behind was News Corp-owned REA Group CEO Owen Wilson whose mammoth pay packet hit $4.36 million, up 145% from the $1.78 million the previous year.

The third industry representative in the CEO rich-list was boss Cameron McIntyre who earned $4.12 million, up from $2.33m, a healthy 77% increase.

Seven West Media chair, Kerry Stokes, was forced to defend Warburton’s salary at the company’s annual general meeting in November.

“It is in the board’s opinion and my personal opinion that he is not overpaid,” Stokes said. “He is paid for performance, and considering the problems we faced with the pandemic and other issues, hitting the company at the same time, James’ dedication and resolve have enabled us to get to where we are now, and I am very pleased with that progress.”

There was no place in the top 50 for Hugh Marks after departing Nine in the second half of the 2021 financial year.

Despite the handsome salaries of Warburton, Wilson and McIntyre, they were well below the average, which climbed 24% to $6.18 million.

The pay survey was compiled by data company OpenDirector.


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