Fiat Chrysler boss takes 50% temporary pay cut as coronavirus wreaks havoc on company

In this file photo taken on May 27, 2019 people walk past the logo of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) at the Fiat Mirafiori car plant in Turin, northern Italy. Fiat Chrysler, Peugeot discuss merger to create $50bn entity. MARCO BERTORELLO / AFP
In this file photo taken on May 27, 2019 people walk past the logo of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) at the Fiat Mirafiori car plant in Turin, northern Italy. Fiat Chrysler, Peugeot discuss merger to create $50bn entity. MARCO BERTORELLO / AFP
MARCO BERTORELLO

Fiat Chrysler chief executive Mike Manley will take a 50% pay cut for three months as part of efforts to protect the company's financial health during the coronavirus pandemic.

The head of the Italian-American automaker made the announcement in a letter to employees obtained Tuesday by AFP.

The company's annual report put Manley's base salary at $1.4-million and his total remuneration -- including retirement benefits and incentives -- at $13.2-million.

"Protecting the financial health of the company is everyone's responsibility and naturally starts with myself and the leadership of FCA," the letter says.

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) Chairman John Elkann and members of the company's board of directors were giving up their "remaining 2020 compensation", it adds.

Ferrari to resume production by mid-April amid global pandemic

Some other executives were reducing their wages by 30% for three months.

The letter also says that "most global employees" will be asked to accept a temporary 20 percent pay cut "as part of this shared sacrifice".

Manley said the decision to cut pay was taken "to avoid the layoff of any permanent employees for the coming quarter".

Fiat Chrysler has suspended operations across the United States and Europe because of the pandemic.

Massive global disruptions caused by the virus have cast doubt over Fiat Chrysler's pending merger with Peugeot and Citroen's PSA Group.

The letter to employees did not directly refer to the deal or say when the company's production might resume.

"We are both reinforcing our access to capital and being laser focused on every project, program and expense -- removing and postponing non-critical activities," the letter says.

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