SJP CEO’s pay package soars to £3.26m

St James’s Place CEO Andrew Croft saw his annual pay package triple to £3.26m in 2021 as the wealth manager recovered strongly from a pandemic downturn.

Senior executives of SJP also enjoyed bumper pay packages despite the firm making 200 staff redundant during 2021 at a cost of £9.7m in redundancy costs.

The redundancies were the first ever made by the company.

Mr Croft saw his total remuneration package rise from £813,000 in 2020 to £3.261m in 2021 as bonuses returned, according the SJP’s annual report published this week.

His 2021 package was more than double his remuneration in 2019.

Directors of the firm accepted 20% fee reductions and waived bonuses as the pandemic hit the firm, resulting in much lower remuneration in 2020.

Packages for senior executives in 2021 included:

• Andrew Croft, CEO, £3.261m (£813,000 in 2020)

• Ian Gascoigne, managing director, £2.431m (£671,000 in 2020)

• Craig Gentle, chief financial officer, £2.362m (£591,000 in 2020)

Source: SJP

Chairman Paul Manduca, who took over in May 2021, received a package of £375,000, £153,293 more than his predecessor.

Although Mr Gascoigne has retired from the board he will continue as an employee of the company and provide “advice and support” to a number of arms including the St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation. He will receive a total remuneration package of £225,000 per annum for his new role but will cease to be eligible for an annual bonus.

Non executive director Dame Helena Morrissey received £111,820 for the 14 months she was on the board before leaving to join AJ Bell.

Most executive packages include benefits, pensions and bonuses.

According to the annual report the company saw a strong recovery in earnings and profits in 2021 following a pandemic downturn in business in 2020. 

While pay packages rose strongly for senior executives, the company said it was forced to make some staff members redundant in early 2021 due to a “restructuring exercise” aimed at removing duplication of some tasks and improving efficiency. 

It is believed 200 staff were made redundant. The company report says the average number of staff now employed by SJP is 2,695, down from a peak of 2,746.

Staff numbers do not include partners (as SJP calls its self-employed wealth managers / advisers). The number of partners during the year rose by 218 (5%) to 4,556.

IFRS profit after tax for 2021 was £287.6m (up 10% on 2020) and the number of SJP clients rose from 804,000 to 868,000.

Gross inflows were up 27% to £18.2bn and funds under management rose 19% to £154bn.

Mr Croft said the economic environment had improved during 2021 and this boosted SJP’s profits and earnings.

He writes in the annual report: “Supported by this more favourable external environment and the desire by individuals to save and invest for the future, I’m very pleased to report that St James’s Place had an excellent year."

Mr Croft said the company predicted increasing demand for financial advice and estimated there are “around 12 million individuals in our target market in the UK, with around half already seeking financial advice.”

Mr Croft added that while there were many developments in the DIY investment platform market, demand for “personal, face-to-face advice has continued to grow as people lacking the time, inclination or confidence to manage their financial affairs, seek help from a trusted adviser. We expect demand for face-to-face advice to only get stronger.”

Chairman Paul Manduca writes in the annual report: “After a difficult 2020, during which the business performed admirably, this year we have seen the hard work and commitment of the whole St James’s Place community deliver further evidence of our potential for future growth.”

St James's Place Annual Report is available here

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