Telecom has defended its chief executive's $5 million pay packet, telling shareholders at its annual meeting the company needs to reward its executive team as they rebuild the business.
Telecom paid Paul Reynolds a base salary of $1.75 million, special payments for travel to Britain, and a $3 million dollar bonus, despite the company's profits falling by 44% to $400 million.
Telecom's chairman Wayne Boyd says he's aware there's been disquiet among some shareholders about its executives' remuneration, particularly that of Mr Reynolds.
Mr Boyd says Telecom is in a time of transformation and it's appropriate the executive team is rewarded for rebuilding the business.
He says the chief executive is rewarded for key performance indicators, which are relevant to Telecom's current stage of investing and working on a long-term strategy to get the company on track for earnings growth from 2011 - a target some analysts now believe will be pushed out by a year.