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Is Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBLI) Overpaying Its CEO?

Simply Wall St

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Yakov Kogan has been the CEO of Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. (NASDAQ:CBLI) since 2012. First, this article will compare CEO compensation with compensation at similar sized companies. Next, we'll consider growth that the business demonstrates. Third, we'll reflect on the total return to shareholders over three years, as a second measure of business performance. This method should give us information to assess how appropriately the company pays the CEO.

See our latest analysis for Cleveland BioLabs

How Does Yakov Kogan's Compensation Compare With Similar Sized Companies?

Our data indicates that Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. is worth US$17m, and total annual CEO compensation is US$287k. (This number is for the twelve months until December 2018). It is worth noting that the CEO compensation consists almost entirely of the salary, worth US$276k. We looked at a group of companies with market capitalizations under US$200m, and the median CEO total compensation was US$452k.

Most shareholders would consider it a positive that Yakov Kogan takes less total compensation than the CEOs of most similar size companies, leaving more for shareholders. Though positive, it's important we delve into the performance of the actual business.

The graphic below shows how CEO compensation at Cleveland BioLabs has changed from year to year.

NasdaqCM:CBLI CEO Compensation, June 12th 2019

Is Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. Growing?

On average over the last three years, Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. has grown earnings per share (EPS) by 17% each year (using a line of best fit). In the last year, its revenue is down -31%.

This demonstrates that the company has been improving recently. A good result. While it would be good to see revenue growth, profits matter more in the end. We don't have analyst forecasts, but you might want to assess this data-rich visualization of earnings, revenue and cash flow.

Has Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. Been A Good Investment?

With a three year total loss of 42%, Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. would certainly have some dissatisfied shareholders. This suggests it would be unwise for the company to pay the CEO too generously.

In Summary...

It looks like Cleveland BioLabs, Inc. pays its CEO less than similar sized companies. Since the business is growing, many would argue this suggests the pay is modest. Despite some positives, it is likely that shareholders wanted better returns, given the performance over the last three years. We're not critical of the remuneration Yakov Kogan receives, but it would be good to see improved returns to shareholders before the remuneration grows too much.

In this case we may want to look deeper into the company. There are some real positives and we could see improved returns in the longer term. CEO compensation is one thing, but it is also interesting to check if the CEO is buying or selling Cleveland BioLabs (free visualization of insider trades).

Arguably, business quality is much more important than CEO compensation levels. So check out this free list of interesting companies, that have HIGH return on equity and low debt.

We aim to bring you long-term focused research analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material.

If you spot an error that warrants correction, please contact the editor at editorial-team@simplywallst.com. This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. Simply Wall St has no position in the stocks mentioned. Thank you for reading.