ITV freezes senior executives' pay

LONDON - ITV has frozen the pay of all staff earning more than £60,000 including executive chairman Michael Grade and managing director of ITV brand and commercial operations Rupert Howell.

The broadcaster also considered a blanket pay freeze across the company, but instead chose a tiered system allowing it to hand the biggest raises to its lowest-paid staff.

Those earning £25,000 or below will receive a pay rise of 4.2%, which is equivalent to the rate of inflation in October.

The next highest pay band, £25,001 to £40,000, will receive 2.5% and those earning £40,001 to £58,750 will receive 2.1%. Anyone above this, but below £60,001, will move on to £60,000 per year.

As a result almost nine in ten employees will get a raise after months of negotiation with unions.

An ITV spokesman said: "In this difficult and challenging climate we have to give serious consideration to all spending, and our pay bill is one of our biggest costs.

"Our proposal aims to ensure that those staff who are earning the least benefit the most from the funds that we have available."

ITV's on-screen stars such as Simon Cowell and Ant and Dec are also expected to share the financial pain when their contracts are renegotiated.

Grade told the Sunday Times last October: "When there is a downturn of this severity, everybody has got to share the pain -- the talent, the independent producers, the in-house producers.

ITV is in the process of shedding around 1,000 jobs including around 430 in its news division.

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