Randgold chief
executive Mark
London, England — 02 May 2013 – Investors in Africa-focused gold miner Randgold Resources have staged a rebellion against a US$4 million share award for the company’s boss, with 39% voting against what one advisory group called an “excessive” package.

The company proposed the one-off award for its CEO Mark Bristow at the company’s annual meeting on Monday, reports Fin24, describing it as a “career shares” award conditional upon Bristow’s continued employment, and on milestones being reached at Kibali, a major mine the company is building in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

“It is considered that this excessive award serves only to reward for the continued normal operation of the company, and therefore falls far short of best practice,” shareholder advisory group PIRC had said ahead of the meeting, urging shareholders to vote against the plan.

The award was still supported by 61% of those voting, but the strength of feeling against it and the strongest opposition of the day by far, was a fleeting reminder of Britain’s “shareholder spring” of 2012, when pay packages and executives alike were thrown out “’ and this despite Randgold’s strong performance against rivals in a beleaguered gold sector.

Indeed, investors overwhelming supported veteran Bristow’s reappointment to the board and only 3% of shareholders opposed the miner’s remuneration report “’ a vote that more often acts as a lightning rod for shareholder anger.

Bristow is credited by many analysts with keeping Randgold on track at a time when other Africa-based gold miners are struggling to hit targets as they face combative work forces and soaring energy and material costs.

While Britain’s “shareholder spring” against executive pay has lost momentum in 2013, fellow miner Anglo American saw shareholders earlier this month throw out a resolution that would have helped the miner raise cash from outside investors.

Almost 28% failed to support Anglo’s remuneration report, either abstaining or voting against the pay plan, up from 15% the previous year.

Source: Fin24. For more information, click here.