Sun TV’s Kalanidhi Maran Among India’s Highest Paid Executives, Yet Again

Kalanidhi Maran

Sun TV Network’s chairman and managing director Kalanidhi Maran and his wife Kavery Kalanidhi, the joint managing director of the company, took home Rs37.08 crore each as salary during FY09, reports The Economic Times.

With the FY09 salary of Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani not yet known, the couple ranks as the highest paid executives in India, leaving behind leading industrialists such as Reliance Communication’s Anil Ambani, former Ranbaxy CEO Malvinder Singh, Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal and Hero Honda’s Brijmohan and Pawan Munjal.

Maran has ranked among India’s highest paid executives in 2007 and 2008 as well.

For the year ended 31 March, Sun TV posted net sales of Rs1,039.3 crore and a net profit of Rs340 crore. Sun TV paid 7.13% of its net sales or 21.8% of its net profit as salaries to the two executives. As on 30 June, Maran held a 77% stake in the company.

In comparison, Reliance Communications, which paid chairman Anil Ambani Rs30.02 crore in salary, posted net sales of Rs22,250.5 crore and a net profit of Rs6,248 crore for the year ended 31 March. Rcom chairman’s salary, as a percentage of the company’s sales would be 0.13% and as a percentage of net profit, would be 0.48%.

Rival telco Bharti Airtel, which paid chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal a salary of Rs22.89 crore, posted net sales of Rs37,352 crore and a net profit of Rs8,044 crore for the year ended 31 March. According to the ET story, Airtel has the largest number of executives earning more than Rs1 crore per annum–27.

The story, about the growing tribe of executives earning more than Rs1 crore in salaries, comes a day after the corporate affairs minister Salman Khurshid warned firms against paying ‘vulgar salaries’ to executives. Today, planning commission deputy chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia echoed the minister’s opinion.


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