"Say on Pay" Wins Big at Sun Microsystems

Last Updated Nov 10, 2008 10:37 AM EST

"Say on Pay" won a resounding 67 percent vote by Sun Microsystems shareholders last week.

The resolution had been defeated during the previous two shareholders meetings at Sun Microsystems which has been struggling with a $1.67 billion loss in the past quarter.

The vote has the firm joining a host of others, such as Apple Computer, Ingersoll Rand, Tech Data and Lexmark that have recently approved "Say on Pay" which is an annual advisory vote on compensation awarded to top executives. Although most firms still vote down such measures, the positive votes have increased to an average of 42.7 percent.

Sun's 67 pecent approval is a major step forward. President-elect Barack Obama campaigned on pushing "Say on Pay" as a way to improve corporate governance.

Sun CEO Jonathan Schwartz also told shareholders that despite its current troubles, the company is poised for growth.

Meanwhile, my colleague at The Corner Office, Steve Tobak, has included Schwartz on his list of tech CEOs who should be ousted. Having worked for years in Silicon Valley, Steve knows more about this kind of thing than an Old Economy, East Coast guy such as myself.