Whitman to draw $1 salary as HP's CEO

Former eBay CEO and gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman joins a legion of Silicon Valley execs who have opted for the symbolic salary.

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Meg Whitman
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Newly installed Hewlett-Packard CEO Meg Whitman is joining a legion of Silicon Valley executives who have agreed to work for a single buck.

Whitman, who took over the helm of the computer maker last week when its board ousted previous CEO Leo Apotheker, will work for a base salary of $1 a year, according to a regulatory filing today. The former eBay CEO will also have the option to purchase 1.9 million shares of HP stock that will vest only when and if the company's stock price increases 120 percent over its current price, according to the Securities and Exchange filing. Her target annual bonus for fiscal 2012 is $2.4 million.

The $1 paycheck has become commonplace in the Valley in the past decade; previous executives opting for the symbolic salary include Apple's Steve Jobs; Google's Eric Schmidt, Sergey Brin, and Larry Page; Yahoo's Carol Bartz and Terry Semel; Cisco Systems' John Chambers; and Oracle's Larry Ellison, among others.

But don't worry about Whitman starving; she spent $144 million of her own money on her failed bid last year for the California governor's office.

HP has also agreed to pay Apotheker $7.2 million over 18 months, the company disclosed in a separate SEC filing today. He will also get $3.5 million in restricted HP shares and a $2.4 million bonus for his time at the company, HP said. The company also agreed to reimburse Apotheker up to $300,000 for any losses incurred on the sale of his California house.