QuantumScape (QS) - Get QuantumScape Corporation Class A Report CEO Jagdeep Singh could wind up receiving as much as $2.3 billion in stock options under a compensation package approved by the battery startup's shareholders.
Although shareholders approved the compensation package for the CEO, proxy adviser Glass Lewis said the estimated amount for potentially reaching various financial milestones is "staggering" in its sheer size.
QuantumScape’s shareholders approved the multibillion dollar deal in a preliminary vote at its annual meeting Wednesday during a webcast.
Two proxy advisers, Glass Lewis and Institutional Shareholder Services, both opposed the compensation deal.
“The disclosed dollar value cost of the grant is staggering,” Glass Lewis wrote in a recent report.
In a letter to shareholders, QuantumScape explained the reasoning behind the high value of the compensation package.
“We strongly believe in setting challenging, hard-to-achieve goals, and then focusing efforts to make them happen,” the company wrote. “This is why we based this new award on stretch goals and why we gave our key executives the ability to share in the upside in a way that is commensurate with the difficulty of achieving them.”
QuantumScape has seen a dramatic rise in valuation followed by a collapse inits stock price. Shares of the company fell by 72% at the close of Dec. 14. The company's investors include Volkswagen and a Bill Gates-backed venture fund.
The company's valuation reached nearly $50 billion at the end of 2020, and its technology has promised to provide a less expensive option to lithium ion batteries.
Singh is not the only CEO to receive executive pay that is worth hundreds of millions of dollars or more — there have been 15 or more executives who received at least $100 million in 2020, Bloomberg reports.