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Ailing firm stopped retirement allowances but found enough for four who served on board

Panasonic exec sendoff: ¥1.9 billion

Kyodo

Struggling electronics maker Panasonic Corp. paid a total of ¥1.855 billion in retirement allowances to four board members who stepped down in fiscal 2012, the company revealed Wednesday in its invitation to a shareholders meeting later this month.

Panasonic stopped paying retirement allowances in 2006, but the four were eligible for the payment because they had served on the board from before that year.

As the amount of retirement benefits corresponds to the term of office, most of the sum is likely to have been paid to the late Masaharu Matsushita, who was on the board for about 65 years since 1947.

The company paid a total of ¥862 million in remuneration to 23 board members in fiscal 2012, meaning the average per member is some ¥37.48 million, down about 22 percent from the previous year.

In the just-ended business year, Panasonic incurred a group net loss of ¥754.25 billion, suffering a massive loss for the second straight year due to sluggish sales of digital appliances, including flat-panel televisions, and hefty restructuring costs.

The company will hold a shareholders meeting June 26.