SEC Watch: Liberty Extends Maffei’s Term as President, CEO For Five Years


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The year-end exec lockdown continues, Yesterday, Steve Burke and other top Comcast (NSDQ: CMCSA) execs got extensions to keep them on board during the NBC Universal (NYSE: GE) acquisition and integration. Today, Liberty Media (NSDQ: LINTA) bought a little insurance against having to search for another second to Chairman John Malone, signing Greg Maffei to another five years as president and CEO.

Maffei’s package, detailed in an SEC filing Wednesday afternoon, isn’t nearly as eye-popping as Burke’s signing bonus worth up to $20 million but it’s not small change. His annual base salary jumps to $1.5 million from $1 million, with 5 percent annual increases and a target cash bonus up to 200 percent of that year’s base. And he stands to benefit significantly if the company’s various stocks do well. When the new agreement was signed on Dec. 17, Maffei also got a one-time grant of options to buy 8.7 million shares of Liberty Interactive Series A; 760,000 shares of Liberty Starz Series A and 1.35 million shares of Liberty Capital Series A at the closing prices that day. Half vest on the fourth universality, the other half on the fifth as long as Maffei is still there. The full agreement hasn’t yet been filed.

Maffei’s first four years at Liberty have been a roller coaster, including a losing court battle with Barry Diller over control of Liberty’s IAC (NSDQ: IACI) stock; a new batch of tracking stocks; bailing out Sirius XM (NSDQ: SIRI) ; the News Corp (NYSE: NWS) deal that brought control of DirectTV (just spun out); and more. Release.

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