Costa's total compensation went down in 2019

Hank Hayes • May 8, 2020 at 2:00 PM

KINGSPORT — Eastman Chairman and CEO Mark Costa’s total compensation went down in 2019 compared to 2018, according to the company’s 2020 proxy statement.

Costa received $14.5 million, down from $15.9 million in 2018.

Costa’s 2019 compensation included $1.2 million in salary, $9.2 million in stock awards and $2.7 million in option awards.

Eastman’s compensation for its top executives consists of base salary, annual incentive pay opportunities and long-term, stock-based incentive awards in the form of stock option, performance shares and restricted stock units.

Eastman’s compensation committee also benchmarks executive pay against a peer group of 20 companies, including DowDuPont Inc., Monsanto Company and PPG Industries.

The company’s 2019 financial highlights noted sales revenue decreased 9% to $9.27 billion; adjusted earnings per share decreased 13% to $7.13; free cash flow was $1.08 billion, equal to 2018; the company returned $668 million to stockholders through a combination of share repurchases and an increased dividend; and Eastman recorded continued innovation that created $400 million in new business revenue.

Costa, the proxy statement said, met partially a commitment in overall financial performance; exceeded growth and innovation; met productivity; met organizational capabilities; and met partially employee safety and wellness.

Costa also received “perquisites” including a personal umbrella liability insurance coverage, home security system, supplemental long-term disability insurance and non-business travel on corporate aircraft. The non-business travel cost the company more than $213,000 in 2019.

“ ... The compensation committee has determined that it is appropriate that the Chief Executive Officer use corporate aircraft whenever possible for both business and personal travel (and for his family when they are traveling with him),” the proxy statement noted. “This is to allow travel time to be used productively for the company, for security purposes and to be sure that Mr. Costa can be immediately available to respond to business priorities from any location around the world.”

Eastman is a Kingsport-based global specialty products company.

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