Sports Authority Asks For Smaller Non-Bonuses For 3 Remaining Executives

Image courtesy of Nicholas Eckhart

Perhaps Sports Authority’s attorneys should have anticipated that the public and the chain’s former employees’ reaction to the news that the company wanted to distribute bonuses to some of its executives. Even the judge in the retailer’s bankruptcy case had harsh words about the bonus proposal. The company has filed another motion, though, seeking smaller bonuses and explaining that they are not, in fact, a reward for running the business into the ground.

Technically, those bonuses would have come from the chain’s lenders, and their purpose was “maximizing the value of the Debtors’ assets for the benefit of the estates,” as the company’s attorneys explain in the motion [PDF] filed this week. Their job is to wind down the company’s affairs, manage the remaining employees and make sure they have benefits, and recover any money left that’s owed to the company.

Under the revised plan, the bonuses for the remaining executives would range from $165,000 to $673,750, and they would have to hit specific performance targets to receive the bonuses. The targets would, the attorneys claim, save or recuperate many times the incentive payment amounts for the company’s estate. (Defunct corporations have estates just like dead people do.)

The identities of the employees who would receive the incentive payments, by the way, have been sealed by the court: the public reaction to the first attempt to get the payments approved may show us why.

DEBTORS’ MOTION FOR ORDER (A) APPROVING MODIFIED EXECUTIVE INCENTIVE PROGRAM AND AUTHORIZING PAYMENTS THEREUNDER AND (B) AUTHORIZING THE DEBTORS TO FILE THE UNREDACTED MODIFIED KEY EMPLOYEE INCENTIVE PROGRAM UNDER SEAL [U.S. Bankruptcy Court]