Getting closer…

Petco Animal Supplies (PETCE) Chairman Brian Devine must be starting to think seriously about retirement, judging by how much his salary has increased over the past few years. Back in 2000, Devine, who was then also serving as CEO, entered into a consulting agreement with the company that provides him with a healthy income stream for at least 20 years post retirement. But the consulting agreement is based on his base salary before his retirement, which has been climbing steadily — over 50% — in the years since the agreement was signed.

According to the K that the company filed yesterday, Devine’s salary rose to $855K last year — a 17% increase over 2003, despite the fact that he stepped down as CEO early in the fiscal year. Back in 2000, when Devine entered into the consulting agreement, his salary was $550K. Under the agreement, Devine, who’s currently 63, will be paid 25% of his “final base salary” for 10 hours a week of work for 10 years following his retirement. He’ll also get another 25% of his final base salary under the company’s supplemental executive retirement program. After 10 years, he’ll start collecting 50% of his base salary for another 10 years under the SERP, giving him at least $427K a year as a retiree. That’s only slightly less than Devine’s replacement, James Meyers, is making as CEO.