Last year, Google CEO Sundar Pichai was given a significant pay increase, positioning him as one of the highest-paid CEOs in the United States.
The company has recently announced a $70 billion stock buyback, while its parent company, Alphabet, has been cutting costs by eliminating 12,000 jobs in response to slowed revenue growth.
These events have caused dissatisfaction among Google’s employees. Following the public disclosure of Pichai’s annual compensation, internal Google platforms have been filled with discussions and memes criticizing the CEO for accepting a pay raise while implementing cost-cutting measures in other areas. Some employees have also expressed their disapproval of the share repurchase, which matched its 2022 buyback.
According to SEC filings, Pichai’s total compensation for last year amounted to $226 million, with the majority of it coming from a $218 million stock award that he receives once every three years. In 2019, when he last received this award, it was for $276.6 million, and his total compensation was $280.6 million.
For his 2022 package, Pichai received almost $6 million for personal security and a $2 million base salary. In 2021, his total compensation was $6.3 million, which included a $2 million salary and $4.3 million in other compensation.
After Pichai’s pay raise became public, memes started spreading on Google’s internal platforms comparing him to Apple CEO Tim Cook, who received over a 40% reduction from his 2022 target total compensation in January.
Around the same period, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan declared that he would reduce his salary by 98% and forgo his bonus following the company’s 1,300 job cuts. Similarly, Twilio CEO Jeff Lawson disclosed that he would be taking a pay cut following a 17% reduction in their workforce.
Google is yet to respond with an official comment on the matter.