High bonus rates and starting salaries across the spectrum of mining
VANCOUVER, Sept. 15, 2011 /CNW/ - In 2011, Canadian mining CEOs are
enjoying high salaries on par with 2010's blockbuster year for
compensation and there has been a rise in mining CEO millionaires this
year, according to the 2011 Mining Industry Salary Survey by Coopers
Consulting and PwC.
In 2011, the average annual base salary for Canadian mining CEOs was
$486,000 in 2011, similar to $480,000 in 2010. Of the 95% of CEOs who
were eligible for cash bonuses, 85% reported receiving payouts
averaging 76% of their base pay (compared to 88% in 2010 and 61% in
2009) with the highest cash incentive percentage totalling 300% of base
pay. The average actual cash bonus payout in 2011 was $412,000,
compared to $540,000 in 2010. The average total cash compensation
package (including annual base salary and cash bonus) was $826,000,
similar to $840,000 reported in 2010 and well above the $670,000 figure
seen in 2009.
This year's survey has seen a rise in Canadian CEOs earning in excess of
56% (compared to 52% in 2010 and 51% in 2009) have annual compensation
packages (base pay + bonus + equity-based pay) over $1 million
35% (compared to 32% in 2010 and 22% in 2009) have annual compensation
packages (base pay + bonus packages) over $1 million
10% (on par with 2010 and 9% in 2009) have an annual base pay in excess
of $1 million
"Mining CEOs are still riding a wave of high salaries and cash bonuses
on the backs of overall solid company performances and strong prices
for certain commodities over the past year," says Lou Vujanich, survey
leader and principal of Coopers Consulting. "The question is now
whether these high salaries and bonuses, which are tied to company and
market performance, will remain as strong next year."
"What kept compensation from increasing dramatically are rising
operational costs and some softening in the equity markets," adds Len
Boggio survey contributor and senior partner in PwC's mining practice.
"Although the Canadian mining sector is overall very stable and in a
position for continued growth, the confused capital markets could
ultimately impact the sector and put a lid on compensation."
High salaries lower down the hierarchy
In 2011, across the full range of salaried staff positions found at a
mine site, over 80% of positions are eligible for some form of
incentive plan, such as an annual cash bonus, gainshare plan or
productivity improvement plans. This is a significant change compared
to as recently as 2002 when eligibility hovered at only 59%.
"The increase in compensation incentives for salaried positions lower
down in the hierarchy is a philosophical change for Canadian-based
mining companies," says Vujanich. "Fierce competition to attract and
retain qualified mining professionals across the spectrum of positions
is driving up compensation costs for mining companies."
"For mining professionals, the competition for talent and uptick in
compensation paints a positive picture for job seekers," adds Boggio.
"To keep up with competition and to attract talent to work in rural or
remote areas, companies are raising the incentives for potential and
current employees, which often translate into more financial reward."
The study also found new graduate mining engineers can reasonably expect
a starting salary in the range of $70,000—a figure that jumps to about
$75,000 after one to two years of experience. By region, Western
Canadian mining operations generally pay more than their Eastern Canada
counterparts. Compensation data also shows companies that mine coal,
industrial and other minerals generally pay more across the board,
while base metal mining operations generally pay less.
The Coopers Consulting and PwC survey this year covers 53 typical
salaried corporate office positions, 58 mine site positions and 14
field exploration positions. The 2011 Mining Industry Salary Survey
database contains information on 17,329 incombents—7,800 are based in
Canada and 9,529 from the United States. In total, 154 North American
companies are represented in the 2011 update (of the 154, 111 provided
Canada based incumbent data while 68 provided United States based
incumbent data). The figures are current to the end of the second
quarter of 2011.
For more information about the report findings, contact Lou Vujanich at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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About Coopers Consulting
Coopers Consulting Ltd. is a B.C.-registered limited liability company
founded in 2002 by the former National Director and three Principals of
the Mining Management Consulting practice of PwC. The Principals of
Coopers Consulting have significant mining industry experience and
offer a wide range of management consulting services to the global
The firms of the PwC network provide industry-focused assurance, tax and
advisory services to enhance value for clients. More than 161,000
people in 154 countries in PwC firms across the PwC network share their
thinking, experience and solutions to develop fresh perspectives and
practical advice. In Canada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an Ontario
limited liability partnership, and its related entities have more than
5,700 partners and staff in offices across the country. See www.pwc.com/ca for more information.
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