Florida on $7,200 a day…

March 3, 2005

When Dennis Williams steps down as president and CEO of Idex Corp. (IEX) in a few weeks and goes into semi-retirement in Florida, chances are he won’t have to resort to bagging groceries at the local Publix, like many other retirees down there wind up doing. Idex, which announced Williams’ replacement on Monday, has entered into a lucrative exit package with its former CEO — one that actually pays him more than three times as much as he was making when he was working full-time. Of course, details of the deal were conveniently left out of the press release. Instead, investors had to dig through the recent 10-K to find the complicated 13-page agreement with multiple dates and dollar amounts. Those that bothered would have found this: for the next two months, Williams, 59, who will continue to serve as board chairman through next year, will continue to collect his regular $31,000 paycheck every other week. But in May 2005, he’ll get a raise and start collecting $109K every other week, or around $7,200 a day. In exchange, he’s required to be at Idex’s offices no more than six days a month. Then, in April 2006, around the time Williams steps down as chairman, his salary drops back down to his regular CEO salary of $31,000 every other week for another year. At that time, he’ll also collect a $1.29 million bonus. There’s also additional language about stock options, five weeks of paid vacation, and up to $110,000 in personal use of the corporate jet. But after all the other stuff, that just seems like icing on the cake. Granted, Idex investors don’t have much to complain about — the stock has done very well during Williams’ five year run. Which makes it even more curious as to why Idex would choose to bury the details in the K instead of telling investors upfront.

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