Page last updated at 19:43 GMT, Friday, 10 July 2009 20:43 UK

Transport boss gives away bonus

Brian Souter
Brian Souter's company plans to invest in new, greener vehicles

Transport tycoon Brian Souter handed over his £1.6m bonus to his company's pensioners and his charity.

The Stagecoach chief executive was eligible for the bonus, built up over three years, at the end of last year.

Instead, pensioners each received a £100 payment before Christmas, the company's annual report revealed.

Along with other directors and 50 senior Stagecoach managers, Mr Souter had his pay frozen this year and no bonuses will be paid.

The annual report says Mr Souter's basic pay stands at £553,000. He is foregoing the £253,000 cash bonus he received last year, but he is entitled to a doubling of last year's bonus in shares deferred for three years, which is currently valued at £525,000.

In total, the chief executive will have a pay package of £1.1 million. At the end of April, he owned more than 108 million ordinary shares in Stagecoach, worth £134 million.

With 25,000 employees across 20 bus companies and two rail franchises, most staff will still be eligible for a pay rise.

A Stagecoach spokesman said there was no freeze for front line staff pay, and most pay increases agreed so far this year have been above inflation.

Cleaner vehicles

The company's annual report included a strong performance in Stagecoach's bus operations, but difficulties in its rail franchises, with a dispute over risk-sharing with the UK Government.

The emphasis in the annual report is on the company turning to a cleaner fleet of buses, including a £71 million investment in 430 new vehicles.

They include 20 buses for its Cambridgeshire service, which will run entirely on biofuels produced from recycled food waste when it opens in autumn this year.

It also reflects the company's expansion of its brand in the USA, and its tour bus operation in New York.

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