Former Cognizant CEO Francisco D’Souza earned more than $14 million in 2018, up nearly 13% from the previous year, while former president Rajeev Mehta earned $27 million, nearly four times his 2017 compensation, a huge chunk of which was in stock awards, the software major told the US Securities and Exchange Commission.
D’Souza ceased being Cognizant’s CEO at the beginning of April when Brian Humphries took over and Mehta will leave the company on May 1. Karen McLoughlin, Cognizant’s chief financial officer, earned $5.5 million, up from $4 million in 2017, while Malcolm Frank, executive vice-president — strategy and marketing, earned $4.6 million.
The company is due to report its first-quarter 2019 results next month. The compensation increases have come at a time when the company said it was laying off as many as 200 senior executives to allow younger employees room to grow. Analysts have also pointed out that the company’s cost-cutting measures, including layoffs, have come at the expense of growth, with industry leader Tata Consultancy Services now growing faster than Cognizant.
Cognizant reported single-digit revenue growth in calendar year 2018, while TCS reported double-digit revenue growth in the financial year ended March 2019. For 2018, Cognizant reported that D’Souza received $750,000 in salary, nearly $12 million in stock awards, $1.3 million in nonequity incentive plan compensation and over $29,000 in other compensation. D’Souza’s compensation was $8.2 million in 2016 and had risen to $12.4 million in 2017.