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Ralph Hamers joined Swiss UBS as CEO in 2020 to become one of the highest-earning bank bosses in Europe, Financial Times reports. Previously, as CEO at Dutch ING, Hamers had complained about his pay level at ING, which was subject to strict EU rules on banker pay. He enjoyed an 11% pay bump in 2022 to become Europe’s best-paid bank boss. The Dutch executive earned $13 million in salary and bonuses, up from 11.73 million in 2021.
Hamers has substantially increased the Swiss bank’s shareholder value. UBS shares have surged 76% since Hamers took over, even though the bank’s full-year profits increased just 2%. “The board of directors recognised that Ralph Hamers successfully led UBS through a challenging year and delivered good financial results despite significant headwinds due to geopolitical and macroeconomic developments,” the bank wrote in its annual report.
Ralph Hamers’ pay increased despite a 10% drop in the bank’s overall bonus pool. The decline reflected a revenue drop at UBS’s investment bank last year. At struggling Swiss rival Credit Suisse, executive board members went without a bonus last year on the back of its second consecutive annual loss. UBS returned $7.3 billion to shareholders in 2022 and said it would increase its dividend by 10%.