McDonald’s Wants Back $105M from Fired CEO After He Hid Relations

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Fast food giant McDonald’s announced this week that it has settled a lawsuit against the company’s former CEO Steve Easterbook and got back his severance payment valued at $105 million.

McDonald’s had first brought a suit against its disgraced former chief executive in August 2020, and alleged that Easterbrook lied during the company’s internal probe into his behavior before his firing.

After the investigation, the company’s board found Easterbrook had a consensual relationship with an employee and fired him in November 2019. Despite their findings, the board still granted him a severance package that included cash and equity.

Easterbrook apologized for his conduct in a statement on Thursday.

“During my tenure as CEO, I failed at times to uphold McDonald’s values and fulfill certain of my responsibilities as a leader of the company,” he said in a statement. “I apologize to my former co-workers, the Board, and the company’s franchisees and suppliers for doing so.”  

With the company’s current CEO Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s has been trying to change the perception of company culture by holding town halls with employees and other stakeholders and instating new companywide values.

“This settlement holds Steve Easterbrook accountable for his clear misconduct, including the way in which he exploited his position as CEO,” McDonald’s Chairman Enrique Hernandez Jr. said in a statement. “The resolution avoids a protracted court process and allows us to move forward. It also affirms the Board’s initial judgment to pursue this case.”

Shares of McDonald’s are up over 23% this year.

Disclaimer: We have no position in any of the companies mentioned and have not been compensated for this article.

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