Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

City Spy

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

City Spy

Article excerpt

TONGUES are wagging about exchanges between new Reuters chairman Niall FitzGerald and chief executive Tom Glocer at the firm's summer party the other evening. Glocer's welcome sounded distinctly double-edged. "Before we offered him the job we checked out his credentials on a wonderful resource called Corporate Watch," Glocer said. "It says: 'Dressed casually in a pink shirt and shoes with toggles, Irishman Niall FitzGerald's appearance belies his power and influence. A former Irish Communist Party member and DJ at local hops in the '60s, FitzGerald is one of the masterminds behind global corporate exploitation.

Since September 1 1996, he has been chairman and CEO of Unilever Plc, one of the world's biggest food and household goods corporations. An exclusive investigation by Corporate Watch has uncovered his role in increasing world poverty and starvation.'" FitzGerald retaliated by pointing out that Glocer is a lawyer. "It's the bad behaviour of 99% of lawyers that give the remaining 1% a bad name," he grumbled. While both men took the jibes in good spirit, City observers say it may presage a shake-up at the group with FitzGerald proving to be no slouch as chairman. Glocer's package for running Reuters last year was [pounds sterling]1.85 million - [pounds sterling]816,000 in salary, [pounds sterling]801,000 in bonus and [pounds sterling]239,000 for rent on his Kensington home. At Unilever, FitzGerald got [pounds sterling]1.4 million.

He may dwell on this and the fact that Reuters is a [pounds sterling]4.6 billion concern, compared with Unilever's [pounds sterling]14 billion, as he settles into his new role.

ROMAN Abramovich's PR tells Management Today magazine that the secret of the Russian billionaire's success "was just a question of timely investment and share consolidation".

That explains everything, then. …

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