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Google Boosts Legal Chief’s Pay With $23 Million in Stock (1)

Jan. 4, 2022, 10:35 PMUpdated: Jan. 4, 2022, 11:05 PM

Alphabet Inc.‘s legal chief will see his annual base salary increase to $1 million this year from $650,000, the company disclosed in a securities filing Tuesday.

J. Kent Walker Jr., the company’s chief legal officer and president of global affairs, will also receive performance and restricted stock units valued at $23 million, according to an 8-K filing by the Google parent.

A tranche of performance stock units with a target value of $5 million has been earmarked for Walker, as well as another tranche of restricted stock units valued at $18 million, the company said.

Mountain View, Calif.-based Alphabet didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment about Walker’s pay package—part of a new compensation arrangement for senior executive team members.

Walker and three other executives will also be eligible to participate in a maximum $2 million annual bonus program based on contributions to Google’s social and environmental goals in 2022, according to the filing.

The other three executives are Ruth Porat, chief financial officer for Alphabet and Google; Prabhakar Raghavan, Google senior vice president; and Philipp Schindler, Google senior vice president and chief business officer.

Alphabet said it will reduce bonus payouts if executives miss target performances.

The leadership development and compensation committee of Alphabet’s board of directors approved the revised compensation deals.

Walker received nearly $51 million in total compensation during fiscal 2020, according to the company’s most recent annual proxy statement. The bulk of his pay came in the form of $50.2 million in stock awards that vest over a four-year period.

Walker sold off nearly $25.6 million in Alphabet stock last year, filings show. He owns almost $7.3 million in Alphabet stock, according to Bloomberg data.

Bloomberg News reported in 2019 that Walker had become one of the most powerful executives in the U.S. technology sector.

A former deputy general counsel at eBay Inc., he joined Google as general counsel in 2006, succeeding David Drummond, the company’s first outside counsel and a former partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati. Walker took on his chief legal and global affairs role in 2018.

Drummond, who became chief legal officer and senior vice president of corporate development at Alphabet and Google, retired from the company in 2020 amid questions about his personal conduct.

Later that year Google elevated Halimah DeLaine Prado to fill its general counsel role, a position that had been vacant since Walker’s promotion in 2018.

(Adds detail on pay package starting in fifth paragraph.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Baxter in New York at bbaxter@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com; John Hughes at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

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