What the heck does this mean?

April 18, 2005

Few people would argue that insurance is fascinating. But at least their proxy statements make for entertaining reading: luxury apartments in Bermuda for Everest Re Group (RE) (as I reported back in December), exclusive country club memberships (as I reported on last Wednesday at USI Holdings) and at HCC Insurance Holdings (HCC), which filed its proxy on Friday, a CEO who made over a half million dollars last year on what the company describes as “utilization of company employees” whatever that means. Let’s just think about that for a moment: how can a CEO get paid for using company employees? Isn’t it normally the other way around? There’s certainly examples of executives reimbursing a company for a personal assistant or at ATA Holdings, a yacht crew. But making money on the use of company employees? That’s a new one for me. Not to mention the fact that the $524,344 Chairman and CEO Stephen Way made last year on this utilization of HCC’s employees represents a nearly 30% increase over his utilzation of employees in 2003. I’m indebted to a regular reader for pointing this one out to me. And if anyone has a suggestion on exactly what HCC is paying Mr. Way for, please let the rest of us know.

Apologies: There was some sort of weird problem today that prevented this post from appearing earlier today. Hopefully, it’s been resolved.

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