Dozens of big companies headed by top-paid CEOs collected COVID-19 government benefits: report

Canada’s 100 top-paid CEOs had a stellar yr in 2020, despite the onset of a virulent disease which led to layoffs and fiscal woes for plenty of employees, in step with a new document.

The Canadian Centre for Coverage Alternatives (CCPA) report tested the ONE HUNDRED perfect-paid CEOs at publicly traded Canadian-based totally companies for 2020. It discovered that their average annual compensation totalled $10.9 million — $95,000 more than their moderate pay in prepandemic 2019.

“At The Same Time As 2020 was in reality an attractive bad yr for many Canadians, particularly lower paid working Canadians, many of whom misplaced their jobs … it wasn’t in any respect a foul year for CEOs,” stated David Macdonald, file creator and senior economist with the CCPA, a think-tank that research financial inequity.

MacDonald combined each and every CEO’s base earnings plus repayment, similar to money bonuses and stock choices, to tally up their source of revenue totals. 

in keeping with his document, greater than one third of the companies headed via those CEOs gained the COVID-19 Canada Emergency Salary Subsidy (CEWS) either immediately or not directly through their subsidiaries or franchisees. 

Dozens of big companies headed by top-paid CEOs collected COVID-19 government benefits: report

David MacDonald, senior economist with the Canadian Centre for Coverage Alternatives, says the rustic’s 100 best-paid CEOs make 191 occasions more than the typical employee salary. (CBC)

MacDonald means that delivered subsidy helped a few CEOs achieve earnings targets for lucrative bonuses, although their corporations could have suffered financially as a result of the pandemic. 

“many of those firms most probably did not need the CEWS, but if there is federal money available, they had been going to use and they had been going to take it,” he mentioned. “That was once not what this program was once intended for.”

The federal govt presented CEWS in March 2020 to assist firms minimize activity losses as COVID-19 restrictions and lockdowns have been imposed. To qualify, firms simply had to show a drop in earnings during the pandemic.

according to the federal CEWS web site, as of Dec. 19, Ottawa has paid out $99.13 billion under this system.

Corporations respond

CBC News reached out for comment to a few corporations which, in step with the CCPA document, gained the CEWS and had been headed by means of certainly one of the ones 100 CEOs. 

consistent with the record, David Klein, CEO of the cannabis company Canopy Growth, scored the highest spot, earning simply over $45 million in total repayment.

MJBizDaily, a cannabis industry information publication, estimates Cover Growth will have received $50 million general in CEWS investment.

In an electronic mail to CBC Information, Cover Growth — that’s based totally in Smiths Falls, Ont. — showed it did obtain the CEWS, but didn’t specify the volume. 

WATCH | Why some successful companies got pandemic aid: 

Dozens of big companies headed by top-paid CEOs collected COVID-19 government benefits: report

Some profitable firms got pandemic improve | The Large Spend

1 yr ago

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Canada’s federal wage subsidy has helped companies keep staff on the payroll, however it came at a large price to taxpayers: over $50 billion and counting. CBC’s The Large Spend investigation increases questions about why profitable corporations were given the money and the way much they really needed it. 2:00

Canopy Expansion stated it met the necessities for the subsidy which “allowed the corporate to offset the monetary affect of the COVID-19 pandemic, including strategically hiring approximately 1,000 crew participants.”

Canopy Enlargement delivered that Klein’s repayment for 2020 was finalized in 2019, ahead of the pandemic hit and the corporate implemented for CEWS. 

consistent with the CCPA report, the second-highest paid CEO in 2020 was Jose Cil with Eating Place Brands International (RBI), which owns Tim Hortons. The report states Cil’s total compensation was with regards to $27 million. 

RBI spokesperson Mary Lowe said the corporate didn’t follow for or settle for the CEWS, however that a collection of the 1,500 Tim Hortons franchise house owners in Canada did receive the subsidy. 

“They were ONE HUNDRED% eligible for the wage subsidy because the executive supposed and many of them relied on it to maintain restaurants open and keep tens of hundreds of Canadians hired throughout the pandemic,” Lowe wrote in an e mail.

Dozens of big companies headed by top-paid CEOs collected COVID-19 government benefits: report

Eating Place Brands International mentioned it did not observe for, or settle for the CEWS, but that some Tim Hortons franchise homeowners did obtain the subsidy. (John Rieti/CBC)

Lowe didn’t say how much the franchisees received from CEWS in 2020. in line with govt data, 483 Tim Hortons franchises in Canada amassed the subsidy. 

While it involves CEO pay, Lowe stated that although RBI is established in Toronto, it’s a international corporate which competes in a world market. She added that a large section of Cil’s repayment won’t pay out for upwards of five years and is contingent on long term performance.

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in response to his findings, MacDonald said that Canada’s top-paid ONE HUNDRED CEOs now make 191 times more than the average employee cash in the united states of america.

to assist decrease the pay gap, Macdonald recommends the federal executive tax most sensible earners at a higher price and get rid of tax loopholes that let for some reimbursement to be taxed at a lower charge compared to common source of revenue. 

He additionally said upper taxes for well-paid CEOs would help replenish federal government coffers after Ottawa paid out billions of bucks in COVID-19 benefits equivalent to the CEWS. 

“As we commence to pay for the pandemic and pay for brand new systems, the people who’ve performed the most efficient should be requested to pay more,” stated MacDonald. 

On The Other Hand, Ari Pandes, a finance professor at the College of Calgary, argues that there are valid explanation why CEOs make a ways more than the rest folks — even though the company they run just lately gathered the CEWS. 

“The marketplace for CEOs and skill is extremely-competitive,” he said. “So if the corporate doesn’t pay them well, then they may be able to go to any other corporate.”

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