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How Should Investors React To Heska Corporation's (NASDAQ:HSKA) CEO Pay?

Simply Wall St

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Kevin Wilson has been the CEO of Heska Corporation (NASDAQ:HSKA) since 2014. First, this article will compare CEO compensation with compensation at similar sized companies. Next, we'll consider growth that the business demonstrates. And finally we will reflect on how common stockholders have fared in the last few years, as a secondary measure of performance. The aim of all this is to consider the appropriateness of CEO pay levels.

View our latest analysis for Heska

How Does Kevin Wilson's Compensation Compare With Similar Sized Companies?

Our data indicates that Heska Corporation is worth US$564m, and total annual CEO compensation is US$4.8m. (This number is for the twelve months until December 2018). We note that's an increase of 20% above last year. While we always look at total compensation first, we note that the salary component is less, at US$600k. We examined companies with market caps from US$200m to US$800m, and discovered that the median CEO total compensation of that group was US$1.8m.

Thus we can conclude that Kevin Wilson receives more in total compensation than the median of a group of companies in the same market, and of similar size to Heska Corporation. However, this doesn't necessarily mean the pay is too high. We can better assess whether the pay is overly generous by looking into the underlying business performance.

You can see a visual representation of the CEO compensation at Heska, below.

NasdaqCM:HSKA CEO Compensation, June 9th 2019

Is Heska Corporation Growing?

Over the last three years Heska Corporation has shrunk its earnings per share by an average of 22% per year (measured with a line of best fit). It saw its revenue drop -6.3% over the last year.

Sadly for shareholders, earnings per share are actually down, over three years. And the impression is worse when you consider revenue is down year-on-year. It's hard to argue the company is firing on all cylinders, so shareholders might be averse to high CEO remuneration. Shareholders might be interested in this free visualization of analyst forecasts.

Has Heska Corporation Been A Good Investment?

I think that the total shareholder return of 104%, over three years, would leave most Heska Corporation shareholders smiling. This strong performance might mean some shareholders don't mind if the CEO were to be paid more than is normal for a company of its size.

In Summary...

We compared the total CEO remuneration paid by Heska Corporation, and compared it to remuneration at a group of similar sized companies. As discussed above, we discovered that the company pays more than the median of that group.

Neither earnings per share nor revenue have been growing sufficiently fast to impress us, over the last three years.

However, we can't argue with the strong returns to shareholders, over the same time period. Given this situation we doubt shareholders are particularly concerned about the CEO compensation. So you may want to check if insiders are buying Heska shares with their own money (free access).

If you want to buy a stock that is better than Heska, this free list of high return, low debt companies is a great place to look.

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.