Maffei Signs Employment Extension With Liberty

Will Remain CEO of Liberty Interactive, Liberty Media Through 2019
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Long-time cable and technology executive Greg Maffei has signed a new five-year deal to remain CEO of both Liberty Media and Liberty Interactive through 2019 that will boost his annual salary by more than 10% and make him eligible for millions of dollars in performance incentives.

According to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission Monday, Maffei’s annual base salary at both Liberty Media and Liberty Interactive will rise 10.6% to $960,570 from $868,219 in 2013 and will increase 5% each year until the end of the contract. In addition, as part of his Liberty Media agreement, Maffei will be eligible for an annual bonus equal to 250% of that base salary and received a one-time signing bonus of about 3.3 million options to purchase Liberty Media shares at $34.04 per share (the stock was trading at $35.12 on Dec. 29). Half of those options will vest on the fourth anniversary of the agreement, with the other half vesting the following year.

As CEO of Liberty Interactive (which cleaved itself into two tracking stocks, QVC Group and Liberty Ventures in October) Maffei gets a signing bonus of 646,352 options to purchase QVC Group shares at $29.87 each and 1.4 million options to purchase Liberty Ventures shares at $37.63 each. QVC stock closed at $29.38 each on Dec 29 while Liberty Ventures shares were priced at $37.70 each. Maffei also is eligible for performance based and restricted stock awards with a target value of $16 million in 2015, $17 million in 2016, $18 million in 2017, $19 million in 2018 and $20 million in 2019 as part of his Liberty Interactive deal.

“We are extremely pleased that Greg will continue in his leadership role for another five years,” said Liberty Media and Liberty Interactive chairman John Malone in a statement. “His creativity and strategic vision have been transformational and have created tremendous shareholder value since he joined us in 2005.”

Since joining Liberty, Maffei and Malone have engineered an aggressive strategy that has included several spin-offs and a $2.6 billion investment in Charter Communications in 2013.

“I am thrilled to continue in my role at Liberty,” Maffei said in a statement. “I want to thank John and the Board members for the support I have received as we have made significant investments and transformative changes. Today, Liberty has a portfolio of businesses that are very well-positioned for the digital mobile era, led by great management teams, with the resources to be opportunistic in the future.”