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Take-Two Upgrades Chairman's Salary

Updated from March 1

Disappointing holiday sales didn't spoil the year for the chairman of video game maker Take-Two Interactive (TTWO), who received a large bonus and generous salary despite the company's struggles. On Tuesday, the company announced Ryan Brant's year was even better than previously reported, as it admitted to errors in a regulatory filing.

Chairman and founder Brant, whose ouster has been called for by at least one analyst, took home a $2.9 million bonus in 2003, according to filings this week with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

That was on top of a base salary of $752,884, representing a 39% raise from his salary and bonus (excluding options) from a year earlier. Brant also received 150,000 shares of restricted stock and 300,000 options, up from 200,000 options in 2002.

Take-Two actually had to update its salary figures Tuesday after filing incorrect numbers Monday that left off the first digit. On Monday, for instance, the company said his salary was a modest $52,884, but another filing Tuesday changed that number to $752,884.

This generous compensation came in a year in which the company restated results, disclosed that the SEC had notified it of a likely civil action, and stood out as the one big video game maker with lackluster holiday sales.

A spokesperson for Take-Two, the maker of the hit Grand Theft Auto franchise, declined to comment.

The disclosure of Brant's salary comes amid a two-year investigation by the SEC into the company's accounting practices. It most recently culminated with a notice to Take-Two that the agency plans a civil action and with the company's restatement of financials for a second time in less than three years. Brant, an unidentified current employee and two former officers also received such notices of a civil action from the SEC.

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