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Unilever, Next and WPP chiefs among biggest earners as study shows CEO salaries are 143 times more than their staff

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By Natalie Mortimer | N/A

August 18, 2014 | 3 min read

Chief executives at Unilever, Next and WPP are among some of the bosses that are paid an average 143 times more than their average employee, according to analysis released today by the High Pay Centre think-tank.

The study, which looks at the pay gap between bosses and their work force at 100 of the biggest companies in Britain, found that the difference was the highest at Randgold Resources, a Jersey headquartered-mining compan, where chief executive Mark Bristow earns nearly 1,500 times his employees, many of whom are miners based in Africa.

WPP chief executive Martin Sorrell, who had the second highest pay gap in the study, took home a pay package nearly 800 times bigger than his employees, earning almost £30m last year compared to the average £38,000 earned by his staff.

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Next boss Lord Wolfson, who came third in the study, was received pay worth 459 times as much as his average employee - £4.6m compared to £10,125 - but subsequently chose to distribute his bonus to staff.

Chief executives Compass, Whitbread, TUI Travel, SAB Miller, Associated British Food and British American Tobacco also featured in the top 10.

Paul Polman, Unilver chief executive, came in 10th and earned £6.4m – 269 times more than his average worker, who brings home around £23,920.

The High Pay Centre compared pay for FTSE 100 chief executives recorded by companies in their annual reports to figures for average pay at each company, provided by Pensions and Investment Research Consultants (PIRC), in order to calculate the ratios.

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