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Sony pays Hirai $25m for final year as CEO

Compensation more than doubled as Japanese group's profit hit all-time high

Kazuo Hirai stepped down in April as Sony's president and CEO. The iconic Japanese company was bleeding red ink when he took over in 2012, but achieved a record operating profit in his final year.

TOKYO -- Sony's Kazuo Hirai received a company record 2.7 billion yen ($24.5 million) in compensation for his final year as president and CEO, the annual securities report shows, reflecting the best-ever operating profit booked by the Japanese group during the year ended in March.

The payment figure dwarfs Hirai's fiscal 2016 compensation of 915 million yen, which was the most since Sony began reporting individual compensation for executives in 2010. Howard Stringer received 863 million yen -- the next highest total -- in fiscal 2010 when he served as Sony president.

Hirai took in about 2.07 billion yen in base salary and performance-based pay for fiscal 2017. He also received a 200,000-share stock option and 50,000 shares of restricted stock.

Hirai, who became chairman April 1 upon stepping down as president and CEO, separately was given a stock grant worth about 1.18 billion yen, the second largest in Sony history after the 1.6 billion yen for Norio Ohga in 2003 when he retired.

Kenichiro Yoshida, who took over as president and CEO in April, brought home a fiscal 2017 compensation package worth 899 million yen. Former Executive Deputy President Tomoyuki Suzuki, who recently stepped down, received 572 million yen. Each of the nine executive officers made over 100 million yen in annual compensation.

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