Ex-White Mountains CEO gets $5.2m payout

White Mountains Insurance Group will be paying its former chief executive officer more than $5 million in addition to his vested pension and other deferred compensation benefits, as part of his retirement package, according to a Wednesday filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The $5.2 million payout reflects the cancellation of various incentives that Steven Fass would have received if he had not retired and his willingness to sign a standard non-compete clause. Fass would still has the right to purchase some 6,300 White Mountains stock options..

Fass was replaced by Ray Barrette as CEO in early February and stepped down from the board on March 2, after the board appointed another board member – Allan Waters – as head of subsidiary White Mountains Re Group, to comply with New York Stock Exchanges independent-director rules. Fass remains a director of Sirius International Insurance Corp., another subsidiary of the company.

The White Mountains board also granted Barrette some 35,000 restricted shares over a five-year period and another 15,000 shares should there be a change of control. It is not known what the value of these restricted shares will be, but as of March 6, when the agreement was executed, the company’s per-share price closed at $565.25. At that time, 50,000 shares would have been worth $28.26 million. – BOB SANDERS

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