Ryanair’s chief executive officer Michael O’Leary is in line for a €100 million bonus despite the low-cost carrier racking up huge losses as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic including a Q1 loss of €273 million.
O’Leary will win the bumper pay packet if Ryanair’s shares hit €21 between 2021 and 2024 triggering a bonus payment of 10 million worth of shares.
Ryanair’s share price closed at €16.51 on Friday but analysts believe the bonus target is a realistic prospect after shares surged on the back of European countries easing travel restrictions.
Last week, O’Leary warned that the pandemic “continued to wreak havoc” on the airline industry and that “significant uncertainty” remained around travel rules and border restrictions.
Over the summer, Ryanair expects to increase passenger numbers to 10 million per month in August but this will be driven by highly competitive prices.
O’Leary said the airline would take advantage of the collapse of several European carriers during the pandemic. The carrier isn’t saddled with state aid debt that needs to be repaid and analysts believe Ryanair is positioned to quickly return to pre-tax profitability.
“As we look beyond the Covid-19 recovery, and the successful completion of vaccination rollouts, the Ryanair Group expects to have a materially lower cost base, a very strong balance sheet and industry-leading traffic recovery,” the airline said after publishing its Q1 results last week.
“We are seeing a strong rebound of pent up travel demand into Aug. & Sept. and we expect this to continue into the second half of FY22, with pre-Covid-19 growth planned to resume strongly in summer 2022.”
O’Leary previously dismissed complaints about his remuneration package saying investors who didn’t like it should sell their shares.
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Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the most prominent airline in the Middle East and has been flying throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centric stories. Always keeping an ear close to the ground, Matt's industry insights, analysis and news coverage is frequently relied upon by some of the biggest names in journalism.