Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg Rakes In $2.28 Billion in 2012

Mark Zuckerberg Facebook CEO

Mark Zuckerberg Facebook CEO

Mark Zuckerberg, founder and CEO of Facebook, topped the list of highest paid executives in 2012 with an astounding $2.28 billion in compensation according to a recent report on executive pay.   That’s far more than any other CEO in 2012 by a long shot.

According to the report, Mark Zuckerberg received base pay of $503,205 in 2012 but largely profited from the Facebook IPO in which he exercised 60 million stock options at a strike price of just 6 cents.  It was one of the largest IPOs in history.  Zuckerberg cashed in on more than $1 billion in shares immediately following the IPO.

FYI: The strike price is a contract that locks in the price at which a stock can be bought.  Basically, it’s an option to buy a stock for a certain price sometime in the future.  The difference between the strike price and the current market price represents the profit.  If Facebook stock (FB) was trading at $38 per share and the strike price was 6 cents then the profit is $37.94 per share.

In addition to the base pay and income from exercising stock options, Zuckerberg also received perquisites which totaled $1.2 million.  These are incidental payments or privileges outside of regular income, salary and wages.  For Zuckerberg, this included security and personal use of company aircraft.

How did Mark Zuckerberg’s total compensation compare to other CEOs in 2012?  There was no comparison.  Apple CEO Tim Cook made $143.8 million and Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz made $117 million.

What do you think?  Are CEOs overpaid or worth the lofty price tag?

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