Yahoo CEO Yang made $1 in salary last year

/ Source: The Associated Press

Yahoo Inc. co-founder Jerry Yang added the chief executive's job to his work load last year, but his salary remained unchanged at $1 — a token payment he has accepted for years because the Internet icon already has made him a billionaire.

The Sunnyvale-based company disclosed the 2007 compensation packages given to Yang and its other top-paid executives in an amendment Tuesday to its annual report.

Yang, 39, didn't receive a bonus, stock options or any other rewards to supplement his $1 salary during a year in which Yahoo's earnings fell by 12 percent while its stock price shed 9 percent.

Already the company's "Chief Yahoo," Yang became CEO last June in the midst of deepening slump. The downturn battered Yahoo's stock price, opening a window for Microsoft Corp. to make a takeover bid that Yang is resisting.

( is a joint venture of Microsoft and NBC Universal.)

Yang replaced Terry Semel, whose 2006 compensation package of $71.7 million infuriated shareholders who believed he was being unjustly rewarded while the company lost ground in the rapidly expanding Internet advertising market.

Paychecks aren't that important to Yang because he has made a fortune through the years selling some of his stock in Yahoo, which he started in 1994 with Stanford University classmate David Filo. Yang still owns a 3.9 percent stake in Yahoo that is currently worth $1.5 billion.

Yang isn't the only Silicon Valley billionaire who worked for a $1 salary last year. Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs and Google Inc. co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin all did, too.

Publicly held companies usually break down how much they paid their leaders in proxy statements filed a few weeks before their annual meetings, but Yahoo inserted the information in its annual report this year as it grapples with Microsoft's unwelcome bid.

Yahoo has indefinitely postponed its shareholder meeting as part of its defense, but the company still needed to disclosed its executive compensation by Tuesday to comply with government regulations.

Microsoft is mulling a possible attempt to oust Yahoo's board at the annual meeting to force its rival to accept a three-month-old takeover bid valued at $41.9 billion, or $29.12 a share Tuesday.

Yahoo's directors want more money, but Microsoft hasn't budged from its initial bid. After Yahoo defied an April 26 deadline for accepting the offer, Microsoft has promised to announce its next move before the end of this week.

Yahoo emerged as a takeover target after losing about one-third of its value during Yang's first seven months on the job.

Semel's 2006 package was the highest of any CEO among 386 companies surveyed by The Associated Press. Before relinquishing the reins last year, Semel received compensation valued at $7.7 million, with all but $1 coming through a grant of 800,000 stock options.

The Associated Press calculates executive pay based on salary, bonuses, incentives, perquisites, above-market returns on deferred compensation and the value of stock options and other awards granted during the year.