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Marciano Pay Down, Cash Up at Guess

Chief executive collects $5.7 million in bonuses tied to licensing activity.

The cash portion of Paul Marciano’s compensation at Guess Inc. nearly doubled last year while his total reported pay package slipped nearly 40 percent.

Marciano, cofounder, vice chairman and chief executive officer of Guess, had total compensation of $8.8 million during the fiscal year ended Feb. 2, down 38.9 percent from the $14.4 million reported in 2011, according to the company’s definitive proxy filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission Wednesday. Yet the cash portion of his pay — salary, nonequity incentive plan compensation and “other” payments — rose 95.7 percent to $6.9 million from $3.5 million in the prior year.

Except for an adjustment for a 53-week year, versus one of 52 weeks’ duration in 2011, Marciano’s salary was unchanged at $1 million. Nonequity incentive plan compensation more than doubled to $5.7 million from $2.4 million in 2011 as he collected bonuses tied to the performance of the company’s licensing business, including $2.2 million under a program established during the first quarter of last year and linked to the operating income of the licensing business at Guess. The remaining $3.5 million of the cash bonus constituted the final payment of a multiyear plan, also tied to licensing performance, enacted in 2005.

Other compensation rose to $159,000 from $119,000, with $73,000 of last year’s amount related to home security.

The shortfall in Marciano’s compensation versus 2011 came from a nearly $8.9 million drop-off in the essentially actuarial category of “change in pension value and non-qualified deferred compensation earnings,” recorded at zero last year compared with $8.9 million in 2011. His stock and option awards last year totaled $1.9 million, off 6.2 percent from $2 million in the prior year. Although not necessarily realized by the executive because of fluctuating stock prices and vesting schedules, the SEC requires the awards be recorded at grant date fair market value.

Guess’ profits were down nearly a third last year, to $181.5 million from $270.7 million in 2011, as revenues descended 1.1 percent to $2.66 billion. Operating income in the licensing segment fell 6.9 percent, to $101.2 million, while royalties fell 3.5 percent, to $117.1 million, providing for an operating margin of 86.4 percent, down from 89.5 percent in the prior year.