John Legere reportedly earned more than Verizon and AT&T chiefs last year


T-Mobile may still be number 4 carrier based on overall subscribers, but last year it outperformed all the rest, bar Verizon. This turnaround in fortune is largely attributed to the affect of John Legere since his arrival. His Un-carrier and Un-CEO approach to the wireless industry has been refreshing to say the least, and has been key in T-Mobile’s rise from “no hope” carrier to being the one network operator people can’t stop talking about.

So it probably comes as no surprise that the successful CEO made a packet last year. But it may be surprising to hear he out-earned the top two CEOs. With a cool $29.2 million in stock and salary for 2013, Legere was some $6 million better off than AT&T’s Randall Stephenson, and almost double VZW’s Lowell McAdam who earned $15.8 million. Amazingly though, Sprint CEO Dan Hesse earned $49.1 million in compensation following SoftBank’s acquisition of Old Yeller.

As for 2014, we’re yet to hear what the first quarter of the year was like for T-Mobile. Early indications have shown it might have been the company’s best quarter yet. And, with Verizon having announced its first ever quarterly loss of phone customers, they’ve got to be going somewhere. A fact Legere was all too happy to point out on Twitter: “Wonder where all their postpaid customers are going?

T-Mobile’s Q1 earnings call is scheduled for May 1st, meaning we only have a week before we find out just how good T-Mo’s first quarter was.

Via: Bloomberg

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  • Fabian Cortez

    Impressive and well worth the money… when compared to Sprint’s Hesse and his $49 million of compensation [for doing nothing].

    • archerian

      The more losses a company makes the higher renumeration it’s CEO gets?

      • eanfoso

        That’s what happened with Nokia and Stephen Elop

    • Scott

      Hesse’s compensation will go down for 2014. The $49 million reflects a one time payout for completing the sale of the company. It is typical to have a CEO with a pay package that includes incentives if there is a sale of the company. That usually has nothing to do with customer growth or profits.

  • Chris Hilbert

    I’ll be skeptical until he makes T-Mobile turn a profit. How long can the company really operate in loss mode? However, I do enjoy the direction he’s taking the company and the wireless industry. Full disclosure: I own TMUS stock.

    • Kidney_Thief

      Amazon posted a loss every single quarter between 1995 and 2002, and has only occasionally posted a profit since then. So, to answer your question: a pretty long time.

      • Chris Hilbert

        You look at some industries and you see companies dry up pretty quick with losses after losses. Ex: green energy companies. I don’t think T-Mobile is going anywhere. JL has turned water into wine with T-Mobiles reputation. Now he just needs to do the same with their profits.

        • Kidney_Thief

          With ARPU rising so dramatically in the past few quarters, coupled with a huge increase in users, it’s bound to happen soon.

        • Chris Hilbert

          Agreed. That’s why I bought shares :) I’m holding patiently.

        • Kidney_Thief

          I’m holding out more for the broadcast auction. T-Mobile will need all the money it can get.

        • JJCommonSense

          @Kidney_Thief:disqus didn’t they already win the low band spectrum from VZW? I thought I read that the deal was supposed to be complete by June and it’d be in operation by q3 or q1 of next year…….

        • Kidney_Thief

          It’s not nationwide, and where it does cover is mostly in urban areas, so it does absolutely nothing for rural coverage, whereas the broadcast auction will.

        • JJCommonSense

          Yea yea yea youre right…. they did say it would provide better bldg penetration but they didnt mention expansion.. so when is that auction? Is that the 1 AT&T is sittin in the playpen crying about?

        • Kidney_Thief

          That would be the one, yes.

        • eanfoso

          Hopefully this happens so they can use that cash to increase the indoors coverage.

        • Kidney_Thief

          In terms of the economics, it looks pretty good for T-Mobile. They’ve stated that they’ll spend the same amount on network upgrades as they have in the past few years, but with increasing revenue from more users.

          Additionally, they’ve used stock sales in the past to raise money for spectrum acquisitions, so, as the broadcast auction approaches, we’ll probably see another huge stock sale, or another campaign that is centered around selling data buckets, because that’s the most profitable for them.

        • CellPhoneTech

          tmobile is fine, keep in mind before all of these changes tmobile was losing MILLIONS of subscribers and posting healthy profits. I own stock in the company as well and I’m not concerned in the slightest. Sometimes you have to spend money and post losses to grow your company. The profits will follow but with etfs buyouts and the huge marketing blitz it’s going to take awhile.

    • Fabian Cortez

      Sprint’s been in loss mode since 2007*… and I’m talking millions and billions (Q2 2012: $1.4 billion loss) of dollars per quarter.

      I’d be more skeptical of Sprint, especially since their CEO was awarded $49 million. :massiveeyeroll

      *except for the third quarter of 2013 where they made a $383 million profit. And that was only due to the $1.4 billion gain from the Clearwire deal. Yes, you guessed it, back to loss mode afterward (Q4 2013, and I suspect Q1 2014).

  • Austin

    Best CEO, best carrier, best pay. Makes sense.

    • JosephLagalla

      Dan Hesse?

    • eanfoso

      I’m not sure about the term best pay, since sprint CEO made the most out of anyone

      • Austin


        But for what tho?

  • scuttlefield

    Say what you will about CEO pay…if anyone earns it, John Legere does!

  • Scott

    Damn…. I ran into John at the bar at The Venetian during CES this year. I bought him a beer and had a good conversation with him for 10 minutes. Had a known he made THAT much, I should have had HIM buy the round!

    • Trevnerdio

      You…spoke with him? Lucky! He’s like a celebrity!

  • trickinit

    And that explains why we didn’t get raises last year :/

    • Aranoch

      Yeah, that fact kind of stings a little more after this. Their reasoning was pretty sound when they said it was because we had to spend so much on rebuilding our brand. That’s would be fine… but not this.

      • thepanttherlady

        That is a slap in the face. So not cool.

      • trickinit

        Exactly. That, and the fact that my manager jumped the gun a little bit. He had already done our performance reviews and promised me a 5% raise. Then a few days later they came out and said we were trying to save/invest money and that merit increases would be “postponed.” Now we find out the truth.

        • LC

          Technically your manager shouldn’t have promised you anything. He could have said he requested a 5% increase, but there’s a process and procedure that has to take place first. I remember the same conversation though and was looking forward to my bump, especially since I was working on buying my first place at the time. Either way, it definitely sucked.

    • eanfoso

      That’s why I quit, I live in Texas and my store paid me 8$+commission, sure commission was nice, but then a lot of TPR stores got all the business, then we were alone, sure my customer base used to bring me a handful of people, but pay wasn’t the same anymore, I might go back over the summer

    • Kidney_Thief

      Or it could have been because T-Mobile was tanking and had yet to show signs of stability.

      • trickinit

        And that’s a very reasonable point. Now that we know things are looking up, they should back pay us on our “postponed” merit increases, as they originally promised. It won’t happen though.

        • Kidney_Thief

          I doubt it’ll happen until there’s a few profitable quarters in a row, which may be on the horizon.

        • major

          so the stock option given to us wasnt a good enough raise ?? stop being so selfish its people like you that make this company go down

        • trickinit

          How is that being selfish? Working hard and outperforming all of my goals to make the company more profitable? In my 7 years of tenure, I have always been rewarded for my loyalty and performance. How is it unreasonable to hope for compensation for my dedication? In all honesty, it’s your aggressive attitude that’s hurting the company.

          The stock option was a nice gesture, but it requires 2 years of employment following the initial offering. That’s something I’m not going to be able to complete, as I’ve had enough. I’ve been jerked around too much (mostly by my regional/divisional management) and I’m on my way to bigger and better things.

        • Nurdface Gamerhandz

          Stop being entitled. I make 3 times what I made at my last job doing less work for less time. I went from full time pulling 9 dollars an hour after commission at a reseller to 20 hours a week pulling 2400/month easily, and I’m NOT in a high volume store.

        • KimSideOut

          Agreed. Stock options don’t pay our bills! Huffington Post is going to be releasing an article soon about Legere and the kind of workplace he supports… Including when he told Albuquerque that they had to get rid of Carly because he slept with her, and because Dave Mayo told a female in Oakland that she looks like she could run a successful escort service. He used company money from his previous employer to pay off women he sexually harassed, including his kids nanny… This is the man that represents you.

        • trickinit

          I’ll be watching for that article, it sounds pretty interesting.

  • besweeet

    While the CEO’s pay should be performance-based, when your company needs all the money it can for improvements, I don’t agree with his amount.

    • eanfoso

      Me neither, not to that excessive extent, sure a million or two, but I mean he doesn’t do all of this on his own, and yet t-mobile operates at a loss

      • CellPhoneTech

        The only reason why T-Mobile is posting a loss is because they are adding customers like crazy. When you have ETF buyouts and increased marketing like they are running at the moment it’s going to take sometime to make that money back up with the increase of customers. Don’t let the posted loss fool you, tmobile is extremely healthy and is in no way strapped for cash. Keep it mind before all this they were losing MILLIONS of subscribers while posting healthy profits. In wireless with it being so saturated you have to spend money and give up profits to grow your company

    • Kidney_Thief

      It’s not like he makes $29.2 million per year in salary. I’d wager that a large majority of it is tied up in stocks, so he’s hardly bleeding the company dry.

      EDIT: Just as I suspected, his base pay is $1.25 million, the rest is performance-based incentives and stock.

    • TacoTuesday

      It is labor — it’s driven by supply and demand just like any other. His compensation, while high and totally earned, is probably still below his market value.

      He’s now turned around two companies. He’s also one of the most recognizable and in-demand CEOs in the US right now. Not many CEOs can say that. For example, hypothetically, if he had become MSFT’s CEO, how big of a bump would that announcement alone have given the stock price? What’s that worth to shareholders? Not to mention if he brought a tidal wave of new innovation with him at MSFT.

  • Does anyone know if the customer numbers include MVNOs like Net10,Straight Talk & Wal-Mart’s Family Mobile Etc? Or do the MVNOs get to claim those numbers? Ive been wondering that for a while. Cause there are so many MVNO’s out there now its gotten confusing who’s running off who’s network.

    • Stefan Naumowicz

      They break the reports up into postpaid, prepaid, and wholesale (mvnos) customers. The total amount of customers includes all 3 groups

    • MVNO’s aren’t owned by T-Mobile US, Inc.

  • Matt

    He’s a CEO that’s actually doing something to better the company. I won’t see he deserves all of what he’s making but he is more entitled to it than the other two.

  • hanfeedback

    Considering he has pretty much made himself Tmobile, Id say it pretty much is deserved. Whats not deserved in the Sprint CEOs pay, Sprint is pathetic.

  • Paul

    Remember that it’s “stock and salary.” Not just salary, and we don’t know the details of how much stock he bought.
    I do agree that he’s basically turned this company from an eye soar to a highlight maker.

    • CellPhoneTech

      I don’t think he bought any stock, based on what I know he got anywhere from 100,000 to 500,000 shares of the company!

      • Paul

        Sorry, I see how the wording would mislead what I’m saying. You are saying exactly what I was trying say.

        A ways down the comments someone found his salary, $1.25 Million.

        • CellPhoneTech

          Deserved evey last penny, glad we are on same page now!

    • Regan Lay

      Eye soar? Don’t you mean eyesore?

      • Paul

        I see you’re trolling for a minor error. Congrats.

    • dtam

      yeah, you have to assume that he got x amount of shares and because he got the companies stock price up, his pay went up.

  • ccnet005

    So that’s where the 20 million went!

  • Voicestream

    I’m not mad at the CEO, he deserves it, he brought my beloved Magenta from ash to star. I’ve been a Tmo loyal subscriber since 2001 (Voicestream days) and never thought about going to the other 3. as long as they stay here in the U.S., I’ll be a Tmo subscriber forever.

  • IAMCrazy

    He hasn’t turned the company around at all. Before he came to T-Mobile they had started the no contract options and had been upgrading the towers. Oh and big surprise that AFTER T-Mobile landed the iPhone that things seemed to turn around. So improved coverage in major cities, iPhone and cheaper plans than everyone else.

    DT needed to get the iPhone if they wanted to try and turn the company around in order to sell it off. Yup, John is a genius. YET I still have GPRS at my house and Vzw has had LTE since almost day one of launching their service. Oh and if Legere does get credit, his new plans have driven down ARPU big time because of the ultra low cost of the plans plus they keep including data with the plans.

    Oh MR Salesman, please sell more. But wait, you include everything already with the plan. Well sell every customer insurance or the JUMP program. Doesn’t the phone have a kill switch built into it though? HA HA Silly employee, we aren’t going to enable that for customers. We make too much money on insurance!

    • no2apple

      Yo Verizon troll, Get your pills and go back to your mom’s basement…
      GPRS in your house and VZW gets LTE and you still on t-mobile… What a loser…

      • no2appleisatroll

        Yo keep drinking the T-Mobile Koolaid sucker! Oh and what’s really bad Sucker is that you want me to leave T-Mobile!! That further explains how messed up that company is. People want you to leave because they have crappy coverage!! Basically, you are saying, if you don’t like the crappy coverage than you should leave!! And I am the troll?? *rolls eyes*

        • DirkDigg1er

          Lol. I’m still laughing at the name.

    • CellPhoneTech

      Wow ..Verizon has had LTE from day one???dude what are you on? They weren’t even the first with 4G. Check your facts because you clearly don’t know what you are talking about. We aren’t going to enable the kill switch because we make too much on insurance lol, that whole read gave me a good chuckle. You sir are and idiot.

      • IAMCrazy

        Verizon has had LTE in my area since they launched it. Sorry I did not spell it out for you. And I am the idiot *roll eyes* . And if by 4G you mean T-Mobiles HSPA, big deal. Technically, at the time of T-Mobiles launch of 4G their wasnt a true definition yet for 4G. That is why T-Mobile was able to market their service as 4G. And in regards to insurance and the kill switch, those are very true. Here is an interesting story. A national news reporter writes a story about T-Mobile and is also a T-Mobile subscriber at the same time. He goes into his local store and upgrades his phone. Next month on his bill he is being charged for insurance he never signed up for because T-Mobile salespeople spam accounts with insurance so they won’t get yelled at for not selling it! You wouldn’t understand any of that because you have never seen the inside of a store! YOU POS HACK!

        • Fisher of Men

          You should check your facts before you talk on subjects you know nothing about. All “4G” networks in the United States of America is not true “4G” as definied by the ITU or the International Telecommunications Union.

        • Not true. It was amended MANY years ago.

        • CellPhoneTech

          You make no sense.*rolls eyes* “Well they have had LTE in my area since they launched it.” Umm well duh. Of course you would have LTE if they launched it in your area like what kind of thinking is that. So yes you are the idiot. Idk where you got the whole hspa thing from. You are the one that said “Verizon has had LTE since basically day one of launching their service.”I was just pointing out that you have no idea what you were talking about and was Informing you that they weren’t even the first carrier with 4G. The whole insurance thing well that happens at every carrier or really any kind of service company. You are the one that clearly hasn’t ever been inside a store and really have poor knowledge of the telecommunications sector in general. A few minutes of research would have saved you from looking like a fool.

      • TylerCameron

        Verizon was the first one with 4G… Not saying I support them, but they were. Sprint’s WiMAX doesn’t count. It doesn’t count if you can’t get service.

  • wasat-mobilefan

    how many people on here know what tpr means? we lost our jobs (t-mobile corp. employee to tpr employee wireless vision, st louis) my family health benefits went from $60 a month with tmobile to $600 a month(family of 4). no phone discounts. no winners circle awards. my pay went down in hourly and commisn 30%. wireless vision is unreliable. even the market managers have high turn over rates. the problems also sometimes impact the customers and that was my # 1 priority. t-mobile has started to hire a company to run there corp. stores in select cities. we have corp stores, tpr, tpri, and then indirect dealers. all to save money. who gets alot of that money. the main man legere. tmobile destroyed st louis and many other cities that had great corp. jobs then tpr transitioned. before anyone starts talking about my grammar remember please this is about greed. i loved and supported tmobile with all my heart and now i must move on. who else is in these shoes or knows what i am talking about?????

  • Just a guy

    “Earned” is an interesting choice of term for a guy who basically gets paid more than everyone who actually makes the company run, COMBINED. IMO, these CEOs getting paid umpteen million dollars a year to do nothing more than be a public figurehead and tweet cutsie comments is one of the biggest reasons that our economy is circling the drain today.

  • pug_ster

    Verizon and AT&T chiefs probably gets alot more in stock options.

  • Coolroy

    John Legere is a hatchet man, he laid off thousands at his prior company and has already had several rounds of layoffs at T-Mobile and MORE layoffs are coming. It doesn’t matter how many years you have with the company or how dedicated you are if your not liked you WILL BE GONE soon, mark my word. As they turn off the Metro Network where will the Metro employees work? T=Mobile Directors rule employees with fear and intimidation so if you do kiss up and bow down you are gone. John Legere is a paid actor who runs around trash talking and bashing others in order to get paid the big bucks, he cares nothing about the people who work for him as he laid off tenured workers prior to the Metro Merger regardless of the contributions they had made. T-Mobile will announce soon they had another good quarter but will loose even more money than previous due to ETF’s. AT&T just had a great quarter and actually have a better deal at $160 per month for 4 phones and 10 gigs of data. I just left T-Mobile after MANY years as a customer and went to Verizon due to coverage on there EDGE Plan. I love to see all the people talking about NO CONTRACTS at T-Mobile but if you buy a device you have a DEVICE CONTRACT and are still hooked for 2 years just as if you had a regular contract, it’s all just smoke and mirrors as prior you could get out of your contact by paying an ETF and now you can get out of the device contract by paying it off, whats the difference, there is none. Watch for upcoming earnings, that is the key as they will continue to loose money and have a decrease in ARPU. I was a TMobile employee for MANY years and was laid off prior to the METRO PCS merger. Bash what I say if you want but mark my word what I have said is true, more losses on the bottom line, more layoffs, and more trash talking and big payouts to the CEO. He is trying to prop T-Mobile up to sell them, it looks like Sprint is out and Dish has made no offer. If Dish does not make an offer soon I think the stock will start sliding as T-Mobile is over valued.

    • E

      So the AT&T plan only works when you finance phones and customers are being switched to this plan with “contracted” rate plans, when they do not want phones their plan will go up $100. where’s the value in that? Second when TMO started selling phones w/ no discount the cost of acquisition of a customer which runs in the $500-$700 range because they were getting a discounted phone is gone… so with the ETF promo is just playing with money that was moved from one place to another. SO in theory there less “lost” money than before…

      • Coolroy

        You are kidding right about your plan going up $100 if you get phones? What do you think happens if you get phones from T-Mobile? You think your bill stays the same? Let’s do some simple math here, at T-Mobile for $130 you get Unlimted text and talk and .5 gig of data per line, add 2 gig of data per line for $10 PER LINE and you get a total of 10 gigs for $160 per month. At AT&T you get 4 lines plus 10 gigs of data for $160 per month, same price for same amount of data and 4 lines. Now lets add devices (DEVICE CONTRACT) you pay for the phone in monthly installments at T-Mobile or AT&T and your bill goes up accordingly. You still have a CONTRACT its just a device contract and you can pay for the phone in full after a month or 2 and your bill goes down to the same for either carrier. Now wheres the difference, THERE IS NONE. So with AT&T you get more coverage in ALL ASPECTS including LTE for the SAME money. So if you want more coverage for the same money go to AT&T if you want less coverage for the same money stay at T-Mobile, its just that simple.

        • thepanttherlady

          How are you getting that T-Mobile and AT&T are the same for 4 lines? 4 lines with T-Mobile is $100 and includes 1GB of data per line, not 500MB. Add another $10 per line for an additional 2GB for each bringing the total data on this plan to 12GB (non-shared). That makesthe total monthly for T-Mobile to $140 a month.

          AT&T is $160 for 4 lines and they share 10GB of data.

          Phone costs, insurance, program fees (JUMP!/Next) are not included in my calculations.

        • Coolroy

          So you get 8 gigs of data (2 each with T-Mobile) and 10 gig with AT&T for 20 more a month, is AT&T’s extra coverage not worth 20 more a month?

        • thepanttherlady

          I said: “bringing the total data on this plan to 12GB (non-shared).” and you got 8GB of data from that?

          And no, $20 more a month for less data is not worth it.

    • dtam

      you reap the savings of “no contract” when the phone is paid off so there is a difference. with ATT, you’re dumb not to keep changing phones as this is the only way to get bang for your buck.

    • charlieboy808

      You obviously don’t get it. Not saying that I don’t agree with you on the layoffs, they were going to happen no matter what but everything else you are saying is just ignorance. If you switched away from T-Mobile to Verizon, then why are you here? Do you miss us? Is that it?

  • charlieboy808

    Some people are misreading what is being stated here. “With a cool $29.2 million in stock and salary for 2013” doesn’t mean he’s made that much money because most of it is probably in stocks. So he could very well screw it all up and lose all his stock in the company. From what this article is saying, he’s done a damn good job of bringing up the value of T-Mobile. Who knows how much stock they threw at John to take the position, but companies will just throw stocks at people. Companies will hope that the person they are hiring will push themselves to work hard to bring up the value of said stocks. John Legere has done just that.