Coca Cola’s recently approved payment plan for the next four years has come under very public fire for its “excessive” compensation for executives. Indeed, that is the word Warren Buffett used to describe the plan. The head of Berkshire Hathaway came out last week decrying Coca-Cola’s pay plan, but in an interview with Fortune, he has somewhat backtracked on his statements criticizing the plan, and has defended his abstaining from the vote that took place approving the measure.
The payment plan’s biggest fault, according to critics, is that it will deliver $13 billion in equity to executives over four years. Some shareholders have come out angrily protesting such a plan they claim will take money from investors and put it in the pockets of Coke’s executives for little reason. David Winters, an investor in the company and hedge fund manager, has led the charge of critics, but the equity plan was approved anyway. It is worth noting that Buffett’s son voted to approve the plan as he also sits on Coke’s board.