By  on April 23, 2010

Saks Inc.’s comeback from the depths of the recession paid off handsomely for its chief executive officer, Stephen I. Sadove, who saw his 2009 compensation package grow more than 20 percent.

Sadove earned a total of $6.7 million last year, 20.3 percent above his 2008 take of $5.5 million as a twelvefold increase in his nonequity compensation more than offset a 52.7 percent cut in his stock and option awards, to a total of $1.9 million, according to the preliminary proxy filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission Thursday. Because of vesting schedules and fluctuating stock prices, stock and option awards aren’t necessarily realized by the executives eligible for them, but it is required they be reported to the SEC.

Sadove’s nonequity bonus rose to $3.6 million last year from $298,000 in 2008, but the increase was partially attributable to Saks’ decision to award some stock performance units in cash and record them accordingly. The cash portion of Sadove’s bonus, the company said, was $1.6 million. Bonuses were rewarded for delivering higher EBITDA than planned ($115 million versus $110 million) and greater expense reduction than planned ($105 million versus $55 million) and achieving numerous other nonfinancial corporate objectives.

Sadove’s salary declined 4.2 percent to $1 million from $1.1 million in 2008 as the board’s compensation committee adopted management’s recommendation that executive paychecks be cut 3 to 7 percent.

Ronald Frasch, president and chief merchandising officer of the company, saw his compensation decline 18.1 percent to $3.2 million, including a $250,000 retention bonus, from $3.9 million in 2008.

Saks last year trimmed its net loss to $57.9 million, from $158.8 million in 2008, as revenues fell 13.5 percent to $2.63 billion.

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