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Focus Financial CEO Took 17% Pay Cut in 2020

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What You Need to Know

  • Focus Financial cut the total compensation of its CEO and several other top executives in 2020.
  • Although their base salaries all grew from 2019, their long-term option awards were reduced.
  • Their incentive awards declined as targeted estimated revenue fell short.

RIA aggregator Focus Financial Partners slashed the total compensation of its top executives in 2020, including Rudy Adolf, its CEO and chairman, whose total pay was cut 16.6%, according to a proxy statement it filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday.

Although the company reported stronger revenue and earnings results in 2020 than it did in 2019, Focus missed its target for equity incentives as estimated revenue grew 9.8%, short of the 15% required to meet the incentive target, according to the statement.

Adolf’s total 2020 compensation decreased to $5.68 million last year from $6.81 million in 2019. Although his base salary increased to $882,675 from $856,967, his annual long-term option awards declined to $1.77 million from $2.90 million, the filing showed.

It was a similar story with the other four executives. The total compensation of Rajini Sundar Kodialam, Focus chief operating officer, decreased to $3.66 million from $4.42 million, with her base salary increasing to $579,145 from $562,277, but her annual LT option awards declining to $1.15 million from $1.90 million.

The total compensation of Leonard Chang, senior managing director and head of M&A, decreased to $2.92 million from $3.53 million, with his base salary increasing to $464,410 from $450,883 but his annual LT option awards declining to $921,056 from $1.52 million.

The total compensation of James Shanahan, chief financial officer, decreased to $2.59 million from $3.09 million, with his base salary increasing to $519,046 from $503,928 but his annual LT option awards declining to $772,059 from $1.28 million.

And the total compensation of J. Russell McGranahan, general counsel and corporate secretary, decreased to $2.32 million from $2.77 million, with his base salary increasing to $464,410 from $450,883 but his annual LT option awards declining to $690,792 from $1.14 million.

“Despite the challenges, uncertainties and market volatility that resulted from” the COVID-19 pandemic, Focus said in the statement that it “delivered robust financial results across a range of performance metrics.”

Those achievements included a total of 25 acquisitions that included the additions of seven new partner firms with $22.1 million in acquired base earnings and 18 mergers on behalf of its partner firms, including three mergers for partner firms completing their first transaction, it said.

Focus reported in February that fourth-quarter 2020 revenue grew 11.6% to $379.7 million and it posted a profit of $7.7 million, reversing the $12.7 million loss in Q4 of 2019. And it reported that 2020 revenue increased 11.7% to $1.36 billion while posting a profit of $49 million, reversing the 2019 loss of $12 million.

Pictured: Rudy Adolf, CEO, Focus Financial