Terminated CEO Waives $100M Payout

Eugene Isenberg would have donated severance pay to charity

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Feb 7, 2012 1:14 PM CST

(Newser) – Eugene Isenberg probably managed to sidestep some of the ire of the 99% with this decision: The former CEO of Nabors Industries agreed to waive his $100 million termination payment when he was replaced as chief executive. Isenberg, who will be kept on as chairman, "certainly didn't need the money," says a spokesperson for the oil-drilling contractor. He was planning to donate the severance payment to charity anyhow, and decided to waive it because the decision "was in the best interest of shareholders," the spokesperson adds.

Isenberg, who made nearly $750 million between 1992 and 2010, has been one of the country's highest-paid executives; this termination payment would have been one of the largest in the history of US corporations and would have exceeded Nabors' net income in the third quarter. Shareholders had not been happy about the payout, the Wall Street Journal notes. The plan to replace Isenberg, 82, was announced after an October conference call during which he gave an unusually slow presentation, but his wife says his health is "all right." In a statement, Isenberg said he hopes Nabors will donate a "substantial portion" of the $100 million to charity.

In this undated photo provided by Nabors Industries, Chairman, Director and CEO Eugene Isenberg is shown.
In this undated photo provided by Nabors Industries, Chairman, Director and CEO Eugene Isenberg is shown.   (AP Photo/Nabors Industries)
  (Flickr)
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