December 21, 2020

Agenda: Investors Probe Covid ‘Pivot’ in Engagements

by Stephanie Forshee

In early February, Macy’s Inc. hosted its annual Investor’s Day meeting at the New York Stock Exchange, which covered strategy talks and the retailer’s path forward after the previous year failed to meet expectations. The investor presentation referred to 2019 as a “challenging year for Macy’s,” but the company announced a new road map “to stabilize profitability” through cost reduction and reinvestments.

Weeks later, as the global pandemic erupted and led to store closures across the country, the company found itself “reeling, just like all of retail was,” says Elisa Garcia, chief legal officer and corporate secretary at Macy’s.

One change was to more heavily weight relative total shareholder return in its incentive plans. “How else can you measure it?” she says. “At this stage, all we can do is measure, ‘Did we do better or worse than the companies that we’re judged against normally?’”

Shareholders largely supported the company’s executive compensation plans, with 93.7% voting in favor of the pay packages, according to Farient’s Say on Pay Tracker.

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