CEO bonuses

Willie Walsh

Keith Williams

Reports suggest that Willie Walsh, chief executive of British Airways parent company IAG, has been forced to give up his bonus after refusing to give it up voluntarily.  The same city sources claim that the boss of sister airline, Iberia, had offered to give up his bonus but that Walsh refused.

The news comes shortly after IAG announced a loss of £862 million for the last financial year, a result of increasing losses at Iberia. As the airline struggles to reduce losses it has announced significant job losses and the board of IAG took the somewhat obvious decision that having Mr Walsh walk away with a healthy bonus, while asking others for deep cuts and job losses, wasn’t going to help matters.

Perhaps the most ironic part of the story is that Keith Williams, the man who succeeded Willie Walsh as head of British Airways, earned more than his boss last year and, due to the relative success of British Airways, was able to  hold onto a generous bonus of just under £500,000.