Carter’s Inc. awarded Chief Executive Michael Casey a 63 percent pay raise last year, to $9.8 million, as the Atlanta children’s clothing company recovered from a years-long fraud investigation of former top executives.
The big bump in the 52-year-old executive’s pay followed a roughly 40 percent rise last year in both the company’s stock price and its profit, to $161 million.
But it also followed indictments of two former top executives and a guilty plea by another ex-executive since 2010 for alleged securities fraud, insider trading and other charges.
The look at Casey’s compensation is part of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s analysis of the pay of Georgia’s top executives over coming weeks. Executive pay has gained increased attention from investors and lawmakers since the 2007-2009 financial crisis and the Great Recession.
Carter’s, which makes and sells OshKosh B’Gosh and other children’s clothing brands, reported a 13 percent increase in sales last year, to $2.4 billion.
The higher sales and profitability triggered an increase of more than $3 million in Casey’s bonus and stock award. Casey’s pay included $2.9 million in salary and bonus and $6.8 million in stock and stock option awards.
Casey joined Carter’s in 1993 and was chief financial officer before being named CEO in 2008.
Casey hasn’t been named in a federal investigation into alleged accounting and securities fraud involving some former top executives. The investigation began after Carter’s re-stated financial results for several years in 2009. Regulators agreed in 2010 not to fine the company if it cooperated with authorities.
Casey’s former second-in-command, Joseph Pacifico, was charged last year with securities and accounting fraud. Investigators allege that Pacifico, president from 2004-2009, lied to other Carter’s executives and helped cover up undisclosed discounts to the company’s largest customer, Kohl’s.
Another top executive, Joseph M. Elles, was indicted in 2010 for allegedly perpetrating the scheme, which caused Carter’s to inflate its reported revenues and profit, according to federal investigators.
Eric M. Martin, head of investor relations, pleaded guilty last year to conspiracy to commit securities and wire fraud.
AJC reporter Russell Grantham is tracking what Georgia’s major public companies pay their top executives. Look for periodic news and trend stories in the weeks ahead, as well as up-to-date statistics, as Grantham pores through this year’s proxy statements.