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Henderson GM Consultant, Whitacre Paid $9 Million

Some surprises in General Motors’ SEC 8-K filing.

by on Feb.19, 2010

Why is this man smiling? Perhaps a $9 million pay package might help.

Though he initially took on CEO duties without pay, General Motors boss Ed Whitacre, Jr. won’t be going hungry.  Even if his tastes run toward prime Kobe beef, rather than Texas longhorn, Whitacre should be able to come up with the cash considering he’ll now be getting a pay package worth $9 million, the automaker announced late today in an 8-K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Few expected Whitacre to continue to volunteer his time as GM’s chief executive.  But the SEC filing did contain one big surprise: news that former CEO Fritz Henderson, ousted in a scuffle with Whitacre, late last November, has returned as a company “consultant.”

The month-to-month agreement, which could run through December 31, 2010, provides the former GM executive with $59,090 a month – plus “reasonable” expenses.

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For that sum, Henderson will put in 20 hours a month consulting on international operations – an area he specialized in before returning to the U.S., several years ago — and he will meet at least once a month with Whitacre or one of the new CEO’s representatives.