- The Washington Times - Monday, April 20, 2009

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - The chief executive of DirecTV Group Inc., the nation’s largest satellite TV provider, received a pay package worth $6.2 million last year, down 77 percent from his 2007 compensation, according an analysis of a regulatory filing by The Associated Press.

The decline in Chase Carey’s compensation was largely because he wasn’t granted stock or option awards last year, according to a Monday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

He received a salary of $2.3 million in 2008 and a $3.5 million bonus based on company performance.

In 2007, Carey’s pay package totaled $26.4 million, including stock-based awards valued at $19.6 million when they were granted.

Carey also received other compensation worth nearly $388,000, including almost $263,000 in retirement benefits. He booked nearly $64,000 in costs for personal use of the company plane and his free satellite TV programming at home was valued at almost $10,500.

The CEO was not granted any stock or option awards in 2008. In 2007, he received stock-based awards which were worth $19.6 million on the date they were granted.

The Associated Press formula is designed to isolate the value the company’s board placed on the executive’s total compensation package in the last fiscal year. It includes salary, bonus, performance-related bonuses, perks, above-market returns on deferred compensation and the estimate value of stock options and awards granted during the year.

The calculations don’t include changes in the present value of pension benefits, and they sometimes differ from the totals companies list in the summary compensation table of proxy statements filed with the SEC, which reflect the size of the accounting charge taken for the executive’s compensation in the previous fiscal year.

In 2008, DirecTV posted a 14 percent increase in revenue to $19.7 billion. Net income climbed 5 percent to $1.5 billion, or $1.37 per share. The stock finished the year down 1 percent at $22.91, compared with a 38 percent drop in the S&P; 500 Index.

The proxy statement said DirecTV’s net subscriber growth in the U.S. and Latin America came in better than expected in 2008, while high-definition offerings expanded and free cash flow rose by 76 percent.

Carey and other executives would have gotten higher bonuses if DirecTV had performed better in customer satisfaction as well as had faster improvements in call center operations.

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