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Tim Cook makes $145 million in 2016, blows CEO competition out of water


Apple CEO Tim Cook was the richest CEO of a publicly traded company in 2016 by some distance after amassing a whopping $145 million, according to Bloomberg.

Despite making a paltry $8.75 million in salary and cash awards, Cook bagged home $136 million in vested stocks he received in 2011 when he took over as CEO from co-founder Steve Jobs. Cook’s vested stock alone was $30 million more than what the second-most-paid CEO, Netflix’s Reed Hastings, earned in total.

Bloomberg’s report tallied 25 of the most paid CEOs who run S&P 500 companies according to its annual SEC filings. The list heavily skews toward technology, health care and media CEOs.

Several Silicon Valley CEOs made the list with Cook and Hastings, such as Oracle CEO Safra Catz ($85.92 million), Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff ($85.03 million) and Activision Blizzard CEO Robert Kotick ($57.65 million). 

Hastings, Catz and Benioff made most of their earnings by exercising their options, or cashing out their stock for a certain market price. Hastings in particular hit a jackpot with exchanging his stock options, making $105.39 million in 2016. He also made $900,000 in salary.

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Cook earned his money differently. He relied on his 1.26 million vested Apple shares he received from Apple’s board when he became CEO in 2011. 980,000 of the vested stock was contingent on Cook finishing out his first five years as Apple CEO. The rest, around 280,000 shares, was vested on Apple’s three-year total shareholder return relative to the S&P 500 Index.

Cook has now made more than $320 million from the 2011 vested shares award, according to Bloomberg.

The 56-year-old Cook is famous for his relatively modest lifestyle. He lives in a four-bedroom Palo Alto house he bought for $1.9 million in 2010—after selling more than $100 million of Apple stock right before. He has no kids or partner.

Cook said in a 2015 interview with Fortune who plans to donate all his wealth to charitable causes.

Photo: Apple CEO Tim Cook watches as members of the media check out the new MacBook Pro at a press event held at the company’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2016. (Dan Honda/Bay Area News Group)

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Tags: Apple, marc benioff, Reed Hastings, Safra Catz, Tim Cook