Directors at companies in the CNinsight 100 saw their earnings drop by almost 3 per cent, according to latest financial results.
The latest average director’s salary was £1.47 million, compared with £1.51m at the previous year-end, a fall of 2.5 per cent.
Average employee salaries also fell, but by a more sympathetic 1.7 per cent. The average employee wage - which includes the directors’ slice - dipped to £35,440 from £36,054.
Eleven companies paid an average salary of more than £50k, with the top three - Mace, Mclaren and Brookfield - paying more than £60k. Brookfield offered the top average salary, of £90,153, but it employs only 170 staff. Mitie’s average salary was £14,139, but it employs almost 60,000 staff.
Sixteeen per cent of companies slashed directors’ pay, despite turnover and profits rising, although the same proportion increased their directors’ pay even though turnover and profit dropped.
The top five CNinsight 100 were not among the top 10 for highest paid boards of directors. Balfour Beatty and Carillion just missed out with Balfour Beatty’s total directors’ remuneration at £4.1m. Carillion, Morgan Sindall and Kier were also within the top 20.
Top of the tree
The top 10 companies for directors’ remuneration increased pay by 9.4 per cent on average, but their employee salaries grew by 5.4 per cent.
The average total directors’ remuneration for the top 10 was £6.6m, £5m more than across the rest of the CNinsight 100.
The highest paid board of directors in the industry, at Bowmer and Kirkland, took a 35 per cent drop - though their package was still worth £13.5m. Bowmer and Kirkland saw a 13 per cent increase in pre-tax profit as a company, although turnover fell by 23 per cent.
The company reported a £20.7m remuneration total the year before. Its single most highly paid director’s remuneration halved to £5.5m.
Taking the top spot for the single highest paid director was Norland Managed Services with £6.5m, though this included a long-term incentive payment worth £6m.
The biggest increase for one board was at Durkan Holdings, where directors’ pay was hiked by 218 per cent from £296,000 to £1.1m - albeit still not enough to break into the top 10.
Employee movement across the CNinsight 100 varied enormously. Breyer, a new entry to this year’s top 100 contractors, had the highest rise in employee numbers with 59 per cent more than the firm’s previous year end.
At the other end, staff numbers at Graham fell by 42 per cent. Its turnover dipped by one third, and pre-tax profits were slashed by almost one fifth.
Breyer, in contrast, saw profits edge up 3 per cent, while turnover grew by one fifth. It has launched two new divisions - repairs and maintenance arm Breyer B-Line and solar installation division Breyer Solarbright.
Breyer Group business development director Ashley Powell said this was down to the success of its construction and roofing divisions, along with its investment in apprenticeships.
He added: “Breyer has also diversified into new areas of business by responding to changing market conditions in the industry.”