Tech's highest-paid CEOs, biggest raises and smallest salaries

Before the new year rolls in, we're recapping the tech industry's top earners, biggest CEO bonuses, fattest raises, priciest perks and smallest salary earners, calculated from our analysis of 36 tech companies' 2011 proxy statements.

Tech top earners

Oracle's Larry Ellison topped our tally with a $70.1 million pay package for his company's 2010 fiscal year. Four other tech CEOs took home compensation packages worth more than $20 million in 2010. They are: Apple's former interim and now current CEO Tim Cook ($59.1 million); outgoing IBM CEO Sam Palmisano ($31.7 million); AT&T chief Randall Stephenson ($27.3 million); and former HP CEO Mark Hurd ($23.9 million). [See also: "What do top CIOs make?"]

Biggest CEO bonuses

Few tech CEOs saw their cash bonuses shrink in 2010. Most got bigger -- and some by a lot. IBM's Palmisano earned a cash bonus of $9 million, which is nearly double the $4.8 million bonus he received in 2009. Oracle's Ellison ($6.5 million) and AT&T's Stephenson ($5.1 million) each got more than $5 million in cash. Other tech CEOs who got cash bonuses worth $2 million or more include: Cisco's John Chambers ($4.6 million), Sprint Nextel's Dan Hesse ($4.4 million), Verizon's Ivan Seidenberg ($3.9 million), Symantec's Enrique Salem ($3.1 million), EMC's Joe Tucci ($2.6 million), BMC's Robert Beauchamp ($2.2 million), Adobe's Shantanu Narayen ($2.2 million), NetApp's Tom Georgens ($2 million) and Juniper's Kevin Johnson ($2 million).

Fattest raises

Apple's Cook saw the most extreme pay increase: from $1.6 million in 2009 to $59.1 million in 2010. NetApp's Georgens got a $9.9 million raise, which boosted his compensation to $12.5 million, and Motorola Mobility CEO Sanjay Jha got a $9.2 million raise, which increased his pay package to $13 million. Other tech CEOs who got giant raises include Adobe's Narayen ($7.2 million raise, $12.2 million pay package); CenturyLink's Glen Post ($7.1 million raise, $14.6 million pay package); IBM's Palmisano ($7.4 million raise, $31.7 million pay package); Motorola Solutions' Greg Brown ($5.2 million raise, $13.7 million pay package); Symantec's Salem ($4.8 million raise, $9 million pay package); and Cisco's Chambers ($4.7 million raise, $18.9 million pay package).

Priciest perks

Oracle's Ellison collected $1.5 million in perks, the bulk of which went to security-related costs for his residence ($1,478,600). Other CEOs who racked up the perks are: IBM's Palmisano, who received $1.1 million in compensation extras (including $311,288 for personal use of company-owned aircraft, $55,465 for personal security and a $14,031 tax reimbursement); AT&T's Stephenson ($417,410 worth of perks, including $77,182 for personal use of company aircraft, $30,504 for home security, $28,991 for auto benefits, $15,174 for club memberships and $14,000 for financial counseling); Motorola Mobility's Jha ($388,623 worth of perks, including $186,189 for personal use of company aircraft, $61,243 for temporary housing, $50,633 for personal use of a car and driver, $25,348 for legal fees and $55,159 for tax gross-ups); and Motorola Solutions' Brown ($237,919 worth of perks, including $133,530 for personal use of company aircraft, $16,748 for personal use of a car and driver and $26,849 for tax gross-ups).

$1 salary club

The late Steve Jobs received only a $1 salary during the last several years he spent at Apple, declining all other bonuses, perks and new stock awards. Likewise, Google's Larry Page and Sergey Brin have been taking $1 salaries for years and routinely decline any new stock awards as part of their compensation packages. Another tech CEO near the bottom of the pay scale is Michael Dell. His 2010 pay package included a $950,000 salary and $13,623 in perks (no equity awards or bonuses). Similarly, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer took home a $1.4 million pay package, which included a $670,000 salary and $670,000 cash bonus (no new equity awards). Most recently, Oracle's Ellison agreed to decrease his annual salary from $1 million to $1 last year -- though he still nets tens of millions in equity grants.

Ann Bednarz covers IT careers, outsourcing and Internet culture for Network World. Follow Ann on Twitter @annbednarz and check out her blog, Occupational Hazards. Her email address is

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