Lauren, who serves as executive chairman and chief creative officer, did not take a salary in light of the pandemic, but still saw total compensation of $17.1 million for fiscal 2021 ended March 27.
(Doug McMillon, chief executive officer of Walmart Inc., ranks as retail’s highest paid executive so far this year, with compensation of $22.6 million last year).
Most of Lauren’s take last year came from stock awards, which were valued at $11 million in the Securities and Exchange Commission filing, but are tied to share-price fluctuations and vesting schedules and might never be realized. He did receive $6 million in incentive pay as well as $131,234 in other compensation.
In the prior year, which came to close in the early days of the pandemic, Lauren’s compensation tallied $13 million with the designer forgoing his bonus (after his bonus topped $9 million in both 2018 and 2019).
Patrice Louvet, Lauren’s president and CEO, saw his pay dip 0.9 percent to $12.1 million.
Louvet’s salary totaled $1.1 million after taking a 50 percent reduction for the first quarter last year. He also received stock awards valued at $7.1 million, incentive pay of $3.8 million and other compensation of $64,429.
In a letter to shareholders, Lauren and Louvet said: “The last year will be marked as particularly profound — with the world managing multiple crises across health, the economy and society all at once. While a backdrop none of us would have chosen, it has also been a time to focus on what matters most.
“At Ralph Lauren, our first and primary focus has been ensuring the safety and security of our teams….As we progressively emerge from the pandemic, we are a stronger business than when we came into it. Despite its disruptions, we fundamentally transformed the foundations of our company in fiscal 2021 — progressing on the goals we set out in our Next Great Chapter Strategic Plan to deliver sustainable long-term growth and value creation.”
The company has been moving its price points higher, trimming its portfolio by licensing off Chaps and inking a deal to sell Club Monaco and increasing its marketing spend among other steps to prepare for the future.
“We believe our brand and our purpose are more relevant than ever, as the world embraces the kind of luxury we stand for — one marked by optimism, hope, love and togetherness,” they wrote. “Together, with our lifestyle positioning and the breadth of our product portfolio, we are uniquely positioned to deliver value for our consumers and all of our stakeholders in fiscal 2022 and beyond.”
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