No expense spared in a moving BHP experience

$700,000 relocation allowance: Andrew Mackenzie. Photo: Julian Andrews
$700,000 relocation allowance: Andrew Mackenzie. Photo: Julian Andrews

It is fair to say that the new BHP Billiton boss Andrew Mackenzie did not call Two Men and a Truck when he relocated from London to Melbourne this year.

In fact, Australia's biggest company paid Mr Mackenzie a $700,000 relocation allowance to help him with the move.

The allowance was a small part of Mr Mackenzie's $US12.7 million ($13.6 million) remuneration package, which was published in full detail on Wednesday along with BHP's annual report.

While $700,000 may seem like a lot, the allowance was first subject to 46.5 per cent tax and then a big chunk of the rest was used to cover stamp duty on the new home Mr Mackenzie bought in Melbourne.

Nonetheless, Matthew Windsor from removal company Man With a Van said that sort of money could shift a lot of boxes.

''We could move about 1000 of his employees for that,'' he said. ''The average cost of a move for an average family in Melbourne, with a two-bedroom place, you would put at around $700 at the top end.''

Mr Mackenzie has set up digs in the grungy but gentrified inner-Melbourne suburb of Richmond, where he and his family live in a converted warehouse.

BHP has recently cut back its remuneration packages for top executives, with Mr Mackenzie likely to earn less than his predecessor, Marius Kloppers, under the performance-based pay system.

Mr Kloppers, who officially retires from the company next week, earned about $US16 million for the year to June 30, 2013.

The vast majority of that came from performance-based measures, including long-term incentives that yielded $US10.4 million. A further $US2.9 million came from short-term incentives.

Mr Mackenzie's remuneration for 2012-13 was bloated by a host of one-off payments, and BHP expects him to earn about $US7.6 million in 2013-14.

This story No expense spared in a moving BHP experience first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.