Equifax (NYSE:$EFX) announced on Tuesday that its CEO Richard Smith will retire, following the security breach at the credit reporting company that potentially exposed roughly 143 million United States adults to identity theft.
Smith had spent 12 years as the chairman and chief executive at Equifax. The Georgia-based company announced at the start of September that its chief information and security officer had also retired.
Paulino do Rego Barros, Equifax’s current board president of Asia Pacific, will act as interim CEO, and Mark Feidler, current board member, will serve as non-executive chairman.
Even though Richard Smith won’t receive a “package” to retire, he won’t necessarily be walking away empty-handed. In 2015 and 2016 Smith had received bonuses of roughly $3 million a year. Plus, depending on Equifax’s performance in 2017, Smith could have received a comparable amount, according to company filings. However, the former CEO will not receive severance pay, due to the fact that his departure is by mutual agreement, the spokesperson said. If Richard Smith had been removed from his position, he would have received $5 million of severance.
With that said, Smith will still receive around $18.3 million in pension benefits. Under Equifax’s pension plan, Smith has rights to that pension regardless of the circumstances.
Bloomberg News reported that a number of Equifax executives sold their stock in the company after having learned of the breach. Equifax discovered the breach on July 29, but did not announce it until September 7. However, those executives sold their stock – which was worth roughly $2 million – on August 1 and August 2.
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