Proxy Statement (definitive) (def 14a)

Date : 04/21/2017 @ 1:48PM
Source : Edgar (US Regulatory)
Stock : American Vanguard Corp. ($0.10 Par Value) (AVD)
Quote : 22.9  0.1 (0.44%) @ 3:59PM

Proxy Statement (definitive) (def 14a)

 

SCHEDULE 14A INFORMATION

(RULE 14a-101)

INFORMATION REQUIRED IN PROXY STATEMENT

 

SCHEDULE 14A INFORMATION

Proxy Statement Pursuant to Section 14(a) of the

Securities Exchange Act of 1934

 

Filed by the Registrant  

    Filed by a Party other than the Registrant  

 

 

Check the appropriate box:

Preliminary Proxy Statement

Confidential, for Use of the Commission Only (as permitted by Rule 14a-6(e)(2))

Definitive Proxy Statement

Definitive Additional Materials

Soliciting Material Pursuant to Rule 14a-11(c) or Rule 14a-12

AMERICAN VANGUARD CORPORATION

(Name of Registrant as Specified In Its Charter)

(Name of Person(s) Filing Proxy Statement, if Other Than the Registrant)

Payment of Filing Fee (Check the appropriate box):

No fee required.

Fee computed on table below per Exchange Act Rules 14a-6(i)(1) and 0-11.

 

(1)

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Aggregate number of securities to which transaction applies:

 

 

(3)

Per unit price or other underlying value of transaction computed pursuant to Exchange Act Rule 0-11 (set forth the amount on which the filing fee is calculated and state how it was determined):

 

 

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Total fee paid:

 

Fee paid previously with preliminary materials.

Check box if any part of the fee is offset as provided by Exchange Act Rule 0-11(a)(2) and identify the filing for which the offsetting fee was paid previously. Identify the previous filing by registration statement number, or the Form or Schedule and the date of its filing.

 

(1)

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Date Filed:

 

 


AMERICAN VANGUARD CORPORATION

4695 MacArthur Court, Suite 1200

Newport Beach, California 92660

April 21, 2017

NOTICE OF 2017 ANNUAL MEETING OF STOCKHOLDERS

To the Stockholders of American Vanguard Corporation:

Notice is hereby given that the 2017 Annual Meeting of Stockholders (the “Annual Meeting”) of American Vanguard Corporation (the “Company” or “AVD”) will be held on Tuesday, June 6, 2017 at 11:00 am Pacific. The Annual Meeting will be a virtual meeting of stockholders. To participate, vote, or submit questions during the Annual Meeting via live webcast, please visit www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/AVD2017. You will not be able to attend the Annual Meeting in person.

Matters to be voted on at the meeting are:

 

1.

Elect eight (8) directors until their successors are elected and qualified;

 

2.

Ratify the appointment of BDO USA, LLP (“BDO”) as independent registered public accounting firm for the year ending December 31, 2017;

 

3.

Hold an advisory vote on executive compensation;

 

4 .

Approve frequency of advisory vote on executive compensation; and

 

5.

Approve an Amended and Restated 1994 Stock Incentive Plan.

This year, rather than sending hard copy of all proxy materials to our stockholders, we have elected to provide access to proxy materials over the Internet under the SEC’s “notice and access” rules. This method of delivery will serve to reduce the cost of distribution and reduce the impact on the environment that would otherwise arise from printing hard copies of proxy materials. Our board of directors has fixed April 11, 2017, as the record date for the determination of stockholders entitled to notice of, and to vote at, the Annual Meeting and any adjournment or postponement thereof.  Proxy materials were sent commencing on approximately April 21, 2017, to all stockholders of record as of the record date.

Whether or not you plan to attend the Annual Meeting via live webcast, please vote your shares in one of the following ways, either: (i) via the Internet before the meeting, (ii) by Internet during the meeting, or (iii) if you request to receive printed proxy materials, by following the instructions on the card, including by marking, dating and signing the proxy card and returning it. Please review the instructions on each voting option as described in this proxy statement, as well as in the Notice of Internet Availability of Proxy Materials or proxy card that you may elect to receive by mail.

Important Notice Regarding the Availability of Proxy Materials for the Annual Meeting:  The accompanying Proxy Statement and our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016, are available to view and download at www.proxyvote.com.

We are grateful for your continuing interest in American Vanguard Corporation.

By Order of the Board of Directors

Timothy J. Donnelly

Chief Administrative Officer

General Counsel & Secretary

Newport Beach, California

April 21, 2017

 

 

 


AMERICAN VANGUARD CORPORATION

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

PROXY STATEMENT

 

Annual Meeting of Stockholders to be held June 6, 2017

Proxy Solicitation by the Board of Directors

The Board of Directors of American Vanguard Corporation (the “Company”) is soliciting proxies to be voted at the Annual Meeting to be held on Tuesday, June 6, 2017, via live webcast at www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/AVD2017. This proxy statement describes issues on which the Company would like you, as a stockholder, to vote. It also gives you information on these issues so that you can make an informed decision. The approximate date on which this proxy statement and the enclosed form of proxy are first being sent or given to stockholders is April 21, 2017.

The Board of Directors of the Company (the “Board of Directors” or the “Board”) has fixed the close of business on Wednesday, April 11, 2017, as the record date for the determination of stockholders entitled to receive notice of, and to vote at, the Annual Meeting (the “Record Date”). At the Record Date, 32,227,163 shares of common stock, par value $0.01 per share of the Company (“Common Stock”), were issued, of which, 28,964,572 were entitled to vote. Of the total number of issued shares, 2,450,634 were held as treasury shares and 811,957 were held as restricted shares. Each share of Common Stock, excluding treasury and restricted shares, entitles its record holder on the Record Date to one vote on all matters.

Important Notice Regarding the Availability of Proxy Materials for the Annual Meeting: The accompanying Proxy Statement and our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2016, are available to view and download at www.proxyvote.com. You are encouraged to access and review all of the important information contained in the proxy materials before voting.

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

Can I attend the Annual Meeting?

We will be hosting the Annual Meeting via live webcast on the Internet. You will not be able to attend the meeting in person. Any stockholder can listen to, and participate in, the Annual Meeting by logging onto www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/AVD2017 at 11:00 am Pacific on Tuesday, June 6, 2017. Stockholders may vote and submit written questions while connected to the Annual Meeting on the Internet, but will otherwise be in a listen-only mode.

How do I participate in the Annual Meeting on line?

You will need to use the 16-digit control number included on your Notice of Internet Availability of Proxy Materials or proxy card (if you requested and received a printed version of proxy materials) in order to vote your shares or submit written questions during the meeting.  Instructions on how to connect and participate via the Internet (including how to demonstrate your ownership of stock) are posted at www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/AVD2017.

If you do not have your 16-digit control number, you will be able to listen to the meeting only – you will not be able to vote or submit questions during the meeting.

Why am I receiving this annual meeting information and proxy?

You are receiving this proxy statement from us because you owned shares of Common Stock of the Company as of the Record Date. This Proxy Statement (“Proxy”) describes issues on which you are invited to vote and provides you with other important information so that you can make informed decisions.

You may own shares of Common Stock in several different ways. If your stock is represented by one or more stock certificates registered in your name, you have a stockholder account with our transfer agent, American Stock Transfer & Trust, which makes you a stockholder of record. If you hold your shares in a brokerage, trust or similar account, you are a beneficial owner, not a stockholder of record.

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What am I voting on?

You are being asked to vote on

 

1.

the election of eight (8) directors,

 

2.

the ratification of the appointment of BDO as the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm for fiscal year 2017,

 

3.

an advisory vote on executive compensation, as disclosed in the Proxy,

 

4.

an advisory vote on the frequency of the advisory vote on executive compensation, and

 

5.

approving an Amended and Restated 1994 Stock Incentive Plan.

When you submit your proxy (by telephone, Internet or hard copy), you appoint Eric G. Wintemute and Timothy J. Donnelly as your representatives at the Annual Meeting. When we refer to the “named proxies,” we are referring to Mr. Wintemute and Mr. Donnelly. This way, your shares will be voted even if you cannot attend the meeting.

How do I vote my shares?

Record holders may vote in advance of the Annual Meeting by using either the Internet or as per instructions in the Proxy Card (if you have requested and received printed proxy materials).  Also, you may vote during the meeting via the Internet, as described above. Persons who beneficially own stock can vote at the Annual Meeting, provided that they obtain a “legal proxy” from the person or entity holding the stock, typically a broker, bank or trustee. A beneficial owner can obtain a legal proxy by making a request to the broker, bank or trustee. Under a legal proxy, the bank, broker or trustee confers all of its legal rights as a record holder (which, in turn, had been passed on to it by the ultimate record holder) to grant proxies or to vote at the Annual Meeting.

Set forth below are the various means—Internet, telephone and mail—for voting your shares.

You may submit your proxy on the Internet.  Stockholders of record and most beneficial owners of Common Stock may vote via the Internet at www.proxyvote.com, 24 hours per day, seven days per week. You will need the 16-digit control number included on your Notice of Internet Availability of Proxy Materials or your proxy card (if you requested printed proxy materials).  Votes submitted via the Internet must be received by 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time, on Monday, June 5, 2017. Subject to rules relating to broker non-votes, your Internet vote will authorize the named proxies to vote your shares in the same manner as if you marked, signed and returned a proxy card.

You may submit your proxy by mail.  If you requested and received printed proxy materials, then you may vote by any means indicated in the proxy card, including Internet or by signing and dating the proxy card or voting instruction form received with this proxy statement and mailing it in the enclosed prepaid and addressed envelope. If you mark your choices on the card or voting instruction form, your shares will be voted as you instruct.

You may vote during the Annual Meeting. Instructions on how to vote while participating in the Annual Meeting via live webcast are posted at www.virtualshareholdermeeting.com/AVD2017.

Beneficial Owners. If you are a beneficial owner of your shares, you should have received a Notice of Internet Availability of Proxy Materials (“Notice”) or voting instructions from the broker or other nominee holding your shares.  You should follow the instructions in the Notice or voting instructions provided by your broker or nominee on how to vote your shares.  The availability of telephone and Internet voting will depend on the voting process of the broker or nominee.  Shares held beneficially may not be voted during the Annual Meeting.

All proxy voting procedures, including those by the Internet and by telephone, will include instructions on how to vote either “FOR” or “AGAINST” any or all director nominees.

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What if I change my mind after I submit my proxy?

You may revoke your proxy and change your vote, irrespective of the method ( i.e ., Internet or mail) in which you originally voted, by:

 

Submitting a proxy by Internet not later than 11:59 p.m., Eastern time, on Monday, June 5, 2017 (which may not be available to some beneficial holders); your latest Internet proxy will be counted;

 

Signing and delivering a proxy card with a later date; or

 

Participating in the Annual Meeting live via the Internet and voting again.

Beneficial Owners. If you are a beneficial owner of your shares, then you must contact the broker or other nominee holding your shares and follow their instructions for revoking or changing your vote.

How many shares must be present to hold the meeting?

A quorum must be present at the Annual Meeting in order to hold the Annual Meeting and conduct business. Shares representing a majority of the voting power of the outstanding shares of Common Stock entitled to vote as of the Record Date, present in person or by proxy, will be necessary to establish a quorum. Shares of Common Stock will be counted as present at the Annual Meeting, if the stockholder casts a vote electronically during the Annual Meeting or has properly submitted and not revoked a proxy prior to such meeting. As noted above, treasury shares are not entitled to vote and, therefore, are not counted in determining a quorum. Broker non-votes with respect to ratification of BDO as independent registered public accounting firm and abstentions shall count toward establishing a quorum for the Annual Meeting.

How many votes must the director nominees receive to be elected?

Directors shall be elected by a majority of the votes cast by the holders of shares of Common Stock present in person or represented by proxy at the Annual Meeting.  In other words, those nominees for whom the number of shares voted “FOR” exceeds the number of shares voted “AGAINST” will be elected. There is no cumulative voting for the Company’s directors. Further, broker non-votes will not be taken into account in determining the outcome of the election of directors.

How many votes must be received in order for the other proposals to be ratified?

Approval for the four other proposals (the appointment of BDO as independent registered public accounting firm, the advisory vote on executive compensation, the advisory vote on the frequency of the advisory vote on executive compensation and approval of the amended and restated Stock Incentive Plan) will require the affirmative vote of a majority of the votes cast at the meeting.

How will my shares be voted, and what are broker non-votes?

All proxies received and not revoked will be voted as directed. If you are a stockholder of record who submits a proxy but does not indicate how the proxies should vote on one or more matters, the named proxies will vote as recommended by the Company. However, if you are not a stockholder of record (in other words, your shares are held by a broker) and you do not provide instructions to the broker on how to vote, then your proxy will be counted (i) as a vote “FOR” the ratification of BDO as independent registered public accounting firm, and (ii) as a “broker non-vote” toward all other measures. A broker non-vote does not count as a vote either for or against a measure; however, because four of the five proposals require a majority vote for passage, it is possible that a measure could fail to pass, if there are a large number of broker non-votes. Accordingly, if you want to ensure the passage of a matter, then it is important that you provide voting instructions on that matter.

Who pays the costs of proxy solicitation?

The expenses of soliciting proxies for the Annual Meeting are to be paid by the Company. Solicitation of proxies may be made by means of personal calls upon, or telephonic communications with, stockholders or their personal representatives by either officers or employees.  In addition, a proxy solicitation agent has been retained by the Company for this purpose. Although there is no formal agreement to do so, the Company may reimburse banks, brokerage houses and other custodians, nominees and fiduciaries for their reasonable expenses in forwarding this Proxy to stockholders whose Common Stock is held of record by such entities.

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What business may be properly brought before the meeting and what discretionary authority is granted?

Nominations for Directors for the Annual Meeting.  The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee has established guidelines setting forth certain advance notice procedures relating to the nomination of directors (the “Nomination Procedure”), and no person nominated by a stockholder will be eligible for election as a director, unless nominated in accordance with the provisions of the Nomination Procedure. Under the terms of the Nomination Procedure, to be timely for the Annual Meeting, a stockholder’s notice must have been delivered to, or mailed and received at, the principal executive offices of the Company by no later than March 10, 2017. Notwithstanding the provisions of the Nomination Procedure, a stockholder also must comply with all applicable requirements of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”) and the rules and regulations thereunder with respect to the matters set forth in the Nomination Procedure. The Company did not receive any director nominations to be considered for inclusion in the Proxy to be voted on at the Annual Meeting under the Nomination Procedure.

Stockholder Proposals for the Annual Meeting. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee has also adopted certain advance notice procedures for properly bringing business, other than director nominations, before a meeting of the stockholders (the “Stockholder Proposal Procedure”) , whether or not to be included in the Company’s proxy materials. Under the terms of the Stockholder Proposal Procedure, to be timely for the Annual Meeting, a stockholder must have delivered a notice regarding a proposal to the principal executive offices of the Company by no later than January 15, 2017. The Company did not receive any stockholder proposals for the Annual Meeting, pursuant to the Stockholder Proposal Procedure. The presiding officer of the Annual Meeting shall, if the facts warrant, determine and declare to the meeting that business was not properly brought before the meeting in accordance with the provisions of the Stockholder Proposal Procedure, and if he should so determine, he shall so declare to the meeting and any such business not properly brought before the meeting shall not be transacted.

The Company has no knowledge or notice that any business, other than as set forth in the Notice of Annual Meeting, will be brought before the Annual Meeting. For information related to the application of the Nomination Procedure and the Stockholder Proposal Procedure for the 2018 Annual Meeting, see the discussion in this Proxy Statement under the caption “Proposals for Submission at Next Annual Meeting” and “Stockholder Nomination of Directors.”

Is a list of stockholders entitled to vote at the meeting available?

A list of stockholders of record entitled to vote at the Annual Meeting will be available at the Annual Meeting. The list will also be available Monday through Friday from April 17, 2017 through June 5, 2017, between the hours of 9 a.m. and 4 p.m., local time, at the offices of the Corporate Secretary, American Vanguard Corporation, 4695 MacArthur Court, Suite 1200, Newport Beach, California 92660. A stockholder of record may examine the list for any legally valid purpose related to the Annual Meeting.

Where can I find the voting results of the meeting?

We will publish the final results in a Form 8-K within four business days after the Annual Meeting. You can read or print a copy of that report by going to the Company’s website, www.american-vanguard.com , Investor Relations, Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”) Filings, and then click on, “View American Vanguard SEC Filings”. References to our website in this Proxy are not intended to function as hyperlinks, and the information contained on our website is not intended to be incorporated by reference into this Proxy. You can find the same Form 8-K by going directly to the SEC EDGAR files at www.sec.gov . You can also get a copy by calling the Company at (949) 260-1200, or by calling the SEC at (800) SEC-0330 for the location of a public reference room.

NOMINEES FOR ELECTION AS DIRECTORS—QUALIFICATIONS & EXPERIENCE

The following sets forth the names and certain information with respect to the persons nominated for election as directors, all of whom have had the same principal occupation for more than the past five years, except as otherwise noted. All such nominees have consented to serve and are currently directors. All of the eight nominees were elected by the stockholders at the 2016 Annual Meeting of Stockholders.

Scott D. Baskin , age 63, was elected as a director with the Company in January 2014.  Mr. Baskin has extensive experience as a litigator arising from his 35 year career with the law firm of Irell & Manella, from which he retired at the end of 2013. During his tenure at Irell & Manella, Mr. Baskin concentrated his practice on intellectual property, technology, real estate, business torts and securities actions for a multitude of corporate clients. A frequent lecturer and writer, he has published many articles on intellectual property rights, patent infringement, trial preparation and discovery. He was an

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assistant instructor at Yale Law School and clerked for Hon. Y. C. Choy, United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. Mr. Baskin holds a J.D. from Yale Law School and a B.A. in Political Science and History from Stanford University.  Mr. Baskin brings legal acumen and extensive experience in intellectual property matters, which complement the Company’s commitment to innovation in formulations and delivery equipment.

Lawrence S. Clark , age 58, was elected as a director with the Company in 2006. Mr. Clark served from 2004 to 2012 as the Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) for Legendary Pictures, a motion picture production company that, during Mr. Clark’s tenure, developed, co-produced and co-financed major motion pictures in partnership with NBC Universal. From 2003 – 2004 he provided financial and corporate development consulting services to media and entertainment clients. From 2000 to 2003, Mr. Clark was the CFO of Creative Artists Agency, a leading entertainment talent, literary and marketing agency. From 1997 to 2000, he served as Senior Vice President, Corporate Development for Sony Pictures Entertainment. Mr. Clark was Director—International for The Carlyle Group, a private equity firm, from 1995 to 1997. In 1992, he co-founded Global Film Equity Corp., which provided strategic, business advisory and capital raising services to media companies. From 1989 to 1992, Mr. Clark was Vice President, Corporate Finance at Salomon Brothers, Inc. Prior to that, he was a Corporate Finance Associate at Goldman Sachs & Co. from 1987 to 1989. With over 25 years of financial, investing and operating experience, Mr. Clark brings a financial discipline and analytical approach that make him a valuable asset to the Board.

Debra F. Edwards , age 63, was elected as a director with the Company in 2011. Dr. Edwards is an independent consultant, specializing in global regulatory strategy for pesticides and biocides. She has 30 years of experience specializing in pesticide residue chemistry, human health risk assessment, human health and ecological risk management, registration, re-registration and regulatory policy development. The majority of her career has been spent in leading large scientific and regulatory organizations within the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“USEPA”), culminating in her serving as Director of the Office of Pesticide Programs. Except for a two-year stint in Guatemala as a volunteer in the United States Peace Corp. (1997-1999), Dr. Edwards worked for the USEPA from 1985 until 2010. Dr. Edwards holds a Ph.D. and a Master’s Degree in Plant Pathology, has been the recipient of numerous academic and professional honors, including the Presidential Rank Award for Meritorious Service as a Senior Executive of the USEPA, and has published and made presentations in national and international fora on pesticide regulation, food safety and integrated pest management. Given the large number of active ingredients that the Company has registered for use across the globe and the rapidly changing and increasingly challenging regulatory climate, Dr. Edwards continues to be a valuable asset for assisting the board in mapping out strategy for product defense, regulatory compliance both domestically and internationally, and in the evaluation of acquisitions. She also has extensive experience in product stewardship and worker safety issues.

Morton D. Erlich , age 72, was elected as a director with the Company in October 2013. Mr. Erlich has extensive experience in accounting and auditing, arising from his 34 year career with KPMG LLP and being licensed as a CPA (currently inactive) since 1974. During his tenure at KPMG, he served as Audit Engagement Partner for numerous public and private companies in a wide range of industries and also served as Managing Partner of the firm’s Woodland Hills office. In addition to his audit and accounting work he also developed expertise in merger, acquisition and due diligence projects, as well as SEC compliance and employee benefit plan audits. Since 2004, Mr. Erlich has provided financial and managerial consulting services to a number of middle-market companies and professional service firms. Since 2006, he has been a member of the Board of Directors of Skechers USA, Inc. a prominent global footwear company where he has served as Lead Independent Director and Chairman of both the Audit Committee and the Nominating and Governance Committee, and as a member of the Compensation Committee.

Alfred F. Ingulli , age 75, was elected as a director with the Company in 2010. Mr. Ingulli served as Executive Vice President of Crompton Corporation (later Chemtura Corporation), a $3 billion specialty chemical company from 1989 through 2004, in which capacity he was responsible for the company’s global agricultural chemical business. In addition, from 2002 to 2004 he also served as a member of Crompton Corporation’s executive committee. From 2005 to 2014, Mr. Ingulli served on the board of directors of PBI/Gordon, Inc., a marketer of specialty chemicals in turf and ornamental, lawn and garden and animal health markets and served as a member of the compensation and audit committees of that board. Further, from 1996 to 2004, he served on the board of directors of Gustafson LLC, a manufacturer of seed treatment products and application equipment, and was chairman of that board from 2002 to 2004. From 1990 to 2004, Mr. Ingulli also served as a board member, and from 1998 to 2000 as Chairman, of CropLife America, a nationwide not-for-profit trade organization representing member companies that produce, sell, and distribute most of the active compounds used in crop protection products registered for use in the United States. Mr. Ingulli brings to the AVD board an invaluable in-depth knowledge of our industry and income statement optimization.

 

John L. Killmer , age 67, was elected as a director with the Company in 2008. Mr. Killmer was responsible for Global Marketing, Product and Supply Chain Management for Arysta LifeSciences Corporation (“Arysta”), a large privately held

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crop p rotection and life science company, from November 2004 through June 2008. At Arysta, Mr. Killmer had global responsibility for marketing and product management and, in addition, was responsible for global supply chain management. From 1980 to 2004 he serve d in various capacities with Monsanto Company (“Monsanto”) including three years as President of Monsanto, Greater China from 2001 to 2003. Since December 2014, Mr. Killmer has served as a member of the board of directors of APSE, Inc., a privately-held co rporation involved in the development of RNAi technology.  Mr. Killmer possesses a combination of considerable technical expertise and business acumen. A trained scientist, Mr. Killmer began his professional career focusing on technology and ascended the c orporate ladder with increasing profit responsibility. He served as pro-tem Director of Technology for the Company from March 2009 through December, 2010, during which time he evaluated the Company’s technology infrastructure and added multiple resources ( both people and equipment) to help enhance the Company’s domestic manufacturing and process and formulation technology.

Eric G. Wintemute , age 61, was elected as a director with the Company in June 1994. Mr. Wintemute served as President and CEO from July 1994 until June 2011, and Chairman and CEO since June 2011. With 22 years’ experience on this Board, 37 years’ experience at the Company (22 years as CEO) and membership in leading crop protection trade groups (previously, as Chairman of CropLife America), Mr. Wintemute brings a broad industry perspective to the Board. Since 2013, Mr. Wintemute has served as a member of the board of directors of Tyratech, Inc., a publicly traded company on the London Stock Exchange (in which the Company is a minority investor) making personal care and animal health products from natural oils. His interaction with the heads of the Company’s peers, suppliers and customers; legislators; and enforcement authorities has enabled him to identify economic, technological and political trends affecting the Company. This is an invaluable resource to the Board, particularly when evaluating future business plans, including acquisitions, and providing strategic direction to the Company.

M. Esmail Zirakparvar , age 67, was elected as a director with the Company in June 2010. Mr. Zirakparvar served in executive positions at Bayer CropScience AG. From 2002 to 2004 he served as COO and member of the Bayer CropScience AG’s Board of Management in Germany and from 2004 to 2006 as Head of Region of Americas, President & CEO of Bayer CropScience LP—USA and Member of the Bayer CropScience AG Executive Committee. Prior to that, he served in various executive positions at Rhone-Poulenc Agrochemie and Aventis CropScience from 1986 to 2001, ultimately as Head of Portfolio Management and member of the Global Executive Committee in Lyon, France for these companies. In addition to his hands-on experience in product development, regulatory matters, project management, and management of agricultural chemical businesses, Mr. Zirakparvar helped to oversee the integration, management and direction of one of the largest global agricultural chemical companies. With his background, he gives the board a world-class sense of perspective and strategic direction.

BOARD DIVERSITY AND LEADERSHIP

In evaluating persons for potential service on the Board, we seek, above all, the most qualified candidates. At a minimum, viable candidates must have ample professional experience and business acumen befitting a director of a public Company. In addition, we believe that a fully functioning board should include members having functionally diverse backgrounds, including, for example, industry-specific experience, international experience, profit responsibility in a public Company, accounting and audit expertise, corporate governance expertise, scientific and technological credentials, regulatory expertise, manufacturing experience and mergers and acquisitions experience. While the Nominating and Governance Committee does not have an express policy with respect to diversity in identifying or selecting nominees for the Company’s Board, in evaluating nominees, the Committee does assess the background of each candidate in a number of different ways, including how the individual’s qualifications complement, strengthen and enhance those of existing Board members as well as the future needs of the Board. The Board has adopted a policy under which, once he or she reaches the age of 75, a director must tender a resignation, subject to acceptance by a majority of the other directors. During the Board’s annual self-evaluation, and at other times during the year, the Directors assess the Board’s performance and ways in which such performance can be improved. With respect to the nomination of directors for re-election, the individual’s contributions to the Board are also considered.

The Board of Directors does not have a policy on whether or not the role of the Chairman of the Board and the CEO should be separate or, if it is to be separate, whether the Chairman of the Board should be selected from the non-employee directors or be an employee. However, the Board believes that, to the extent that these roles are held by the same person, it is important that a non-management director be appointed to the position of lead director.  At present, Mr. Wintemute serves as both Chairman and CEO, while Mr. Killmer, a non-management director, serves in the role of lead director. We continue to maintain that Board leadership should be defined according to the stockholders’ best interests as measured against current circumstances. Further, we believe that the factor of paramount importance is not whether the roles of Chairman and CEO need to be held by two people; rather, it is most important to ensure that non-management directors maintain a sufficient

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level of leadership and objectivity. We further believe that we have accomplished this through the appointment of a lead director.

RISK OVERSIGHT

The Company’s Board of Directors has formal responsibility for risk oversight. In 2011, working with enterprise risk management consultants at Lockton, Inc. (the Company’s primary insurance broker), senior management conducted an in-depth risk analysis as a first step toward implementing an enterprise risk management program at the Company. As that analysis was proceeding, the Board formed a Risk Committee, which now consists of Scott D. Baskin (as chairman), M. Esmail Zirakparvar, and Debra F. Edwards to take on primary responsibility for risk oversight. The Risk Committee meets regularly (at least four times per year) and coordinates primarily with the Risk Manager (Timothy J. Donnelly) of the Company.

Senior management has also appointed a team of managers to serve as an executive risk committee, with responsibility to identify and assess areas of risks, to identify mitigation measures and to implement those measures. The Company has identified several material risks facing the Company and has identified risk owners responsible for marshalling the resources and leading a team to address those risks. These risks are updated from time to time and presently include:  i) adverse regulatory climate; ii) managing inventory and associated manufacturing activity; iii) succession planning/bench strength; iv) maintaining competitiveness of product offerings; v) vulnerability to environmental event; vi) undervaluation by the market; vii) sustainable growth through licensing, acquisitions and current product lines; and viii) cyberterrorism.  These risks are incorporated into the risk-owners’ annual performance goals and are important factors in determining both job performance and incentive compensation. Executives serving as risk-owners periodically report their progress through the Risk Manager to the Risk Committee.

Further, in 2015, the Board formally assumed responsibility for oversight of environmental and social risks.  For many years, consideration of these areas of risk has been implicit in the risk management process. However, the Company recognizes that its products, plants and activities are subject to environmental regulations in several dozen countries.  Further, the Company takes seriously its commitment to environmental stewardship and its belief in sustainable business practices.  Thus, the Board has appointed both the VP of Regulatory Affairs and the Risk Manager as executives responsible for focusing on identification and mitigation of environmental and social risks. See, also, “Employee Compensation and Enterprise Risk” on page 13 of this proxy for a discussion on risk and compensation.

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE OF THE COMPANY

The Company is committed to sound corporate governance principles and practices. Please visit the Company’s website at www.american-vanguard.com for the Company’s current Audit Committee Charter, Compensation Committee Charter, Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee Charter, Finance Committee Charter, the Code of Ethics and Conduct, the Employee Complaint Procedures for Accounting and Auditing Matters, and Corporate Governance Guidelines, all of which are available to any stockholder upon request.

THE INDEPENDENCE OF DIRECTORS

It is the expectation and practice of the Board that, in their roles as members of the Board, all members will exercise their independent judgment diligently and in good faith and in the best interests of the Company and its stockholders as a whole, notwithstanding any member’s other activities or affiliations.

The Board currently consists of eight members. The Board has determined that Scott D. Baskin, Lawrence S. Clark, Debra F. Edwards, Morton D. Erlich, Alfred F. Ingulli, John L. Killmer, and M. Esmail Zirakparvar, who constitute a majority of the Board, are “independent” in accordance with the applicable rules and listing standards currently prescribed by the New York Stock Exchange for general service on the Board. The Board’s determination concerning independence was based on information provided by the Company’s directors and discussions among the Company’s directors. The Board will re-examine the independence of each of its members at least once per year and more frequently during the year, if there is any change in a member’s material relationship with the Company that would interfere with the member’s exercise of independent judgment.

7


MEETINGS OF THE BOARD

The Board met four times during the year ended December 31, 2016. All directors attended at least 75% of the aggregate of the number of meetings of the Board and the total number of meetings held by all committees of the Board for which they served. The non-management directors of the Company meet at regularly scheduled executive sessions without any member of the Company’s management present. The individual who presides at these executive sessions is the lead director, John L. Killmer. Interested parties who wish to communicate with the lead director or with non-management directors may do so by email to directors@amvac-chemical.com .

The Board does not mandate that its members attend the Annual Meeting of Stockholders; nevertheless, all directors did attend the 2016 Annual Meeting of Stockholders.

COMMITTEES OF THE BOARD

Audit Committee

The Audit Committee is currently composed of Morton D. Erlich (Chairperson), Scott D. Baskin, Lawrence S. Clark and Alfred F. Ingulli, all of whom are non-employee directors and financially literate. The Board has determined that all members of the Audit Committee are independent directors under the applicable rules and regulations currently prescribed by the SEC and the applicable rules and listing standards currently prescribed by the New York Stock Exchange.  In addition, the board has found that each of Morton D. Erlich and Lawrence S. Clark are “audit committee financial experts” within the meaning of applicable SEC rules and regulations. The Audit Committee held six meetings during the year ended December 31, 2016.

The responsibilities of the Audit Committee are set forth in the current Audit Committee Charter, which is available on the Company’s website ( www.american-vanguard.com ), and include:

 

Engaging the services of an independent registered public accounting firm to audit the Company’s consolidated financial statements and internal controls for financial reporting.

 

Pre-approving all services performed by the independent registered public accounting firm.

 

Providing oversight on the external reporting process and the adequacy of the Company’s internal controls.

 

Reviewing the scope of the audit activities of the independent registered public accounting firm and appraising audit efforts.

 

Reviewing services provided by the independent registered public accounting firm and other disclosed relationships, as they bear on the independence of that firm.

 

Overseeing the performance of the Company’s internal audit function.

 

Establishing procedures for the receipt, consideration, investigation and resolution of complaints, if any, regarding accounting, internal controls or auditing matters.

Please also see the Audit Committee Report on page 10 of this Proxy.

Compensation Committee

The Compensation Committee is currently composed of Lawrence S. Clark (Chairperson), Morton D. Erlich and Alfred F. Ingulli. The Board has determined that all members of the Compensation Committee are independent directors under the applicable rules and listing standards currently prescribed by the New York Stock Exchange.  Further, the Board has found that each of the members of the Compensation Committee, who administers the Company’s compensation plans, is a “non-employee director” under Rule 16b-3 of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the “Exchange Act”) and is an “outside director” under Section 162(m) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. The Compensation Committee held four meetings during the year ended December 31, 2016.

The responsibilities of the Compensation Committee are set forth in the current Compensation Committee Charter, which is available on the Company’s website ( www.american-vanguard.com ), and include:

 

Establishing executive compensation policy consistent with corporate objectives and stockholders’ interests.

 

Overseeing the process for evaluating CEO performance in comparison with Board-approved goals and objectives and recommending CEO compensation to the Board.

8


 

Administering grants and options in Company stock under the Co mpany’s compensation plan(s).

 

Evaluating the independence of compensation professionals.

Please also see the Compensation Committee Report on page 21 of this Proxy.

Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee

The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee is currently composed of M. Esmail Zirakparvar (Chairperson), Scott D. Baskin, and Morton D. Erlich. The Board has determined that all members of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee are independent directors under the applicable rules and listing standards currently prescribed by the New York Stock Exchange. The Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee held three meetings during the year ended December 31, 2016.

The responsibilities of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee are set forth in the current Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee Charter, which is available on the Company’s website ( www.american-vanguard.com ), and include:

 

Recommending nominees for election and re-election to the Board of Directors.

 

Reviewing principles, policies and procedures affecting directors.

 

Overseeing evaluation of the Board and its effectiveness.

 

Recommending committee assignments and lead director nominee to the Board.

Finance Committee

The Finance Committee is currently composed of Alfred F. Ingulli (Chairperson), Lawrence S. Clark, Debra F. Edwards, John L. Killmer, and M. Esmail Zirakparvar. The Finance Committee held nine meetings during the year ended December 31, 2016.

The responsibilities of the Finance Committee are set forth in the current Finance Committee Charter, which is available on the Company’s website ( www.american-vanguard.com ) and involves, among other things:

 

Working with senior management of the Company to evaluate, investigate and recommend changes in the area of corporate finance.

 

Acquisitions, divestitures and other restructuring activity.

 

Short-term and long-term financing plans.

 

Reviewing and making recommendations to the Board with respect to any proposal by the Company or by its subsidiaries to divest, in any manner, any asset, investment, real property, or business interest if such divestiture is required to be approved by the Board.

Risk Committee

The Risk Committee is currently composed of Scott D. Baskin (Chairperson), Debra F. Edwards and M. Esmail Zirakparvar. The Risk Committee held four meetings during the year ended December 31, 2016. All members of the Board typically attend Risk Committee meetings. The primary responsibility of the Risk Committee is to oversee risk management at the Company and to ensure that the Company continuously monitors material risks, identifies mitigation measures for those risks, and takes commercially practicable measures to minimize those risks to the fullest extent possible. The committee works with the Company’s Risk Manager and senior management to conduct (or cause to be conducted) periodic assessments of the Company’s risk profile and to ensure the following:

 

That adequate resources are made available to address and mitigate risks, where possible,

 

That risk owners are identified and made accountable for addressing these risks, and

 

That the practice of monitoring and addressing these risks remains a part of the Company’s culture.

9


REPORT OF THE AUDIT COMMITTEE

The responsibilities of the Audit Committee, which are set forth in the Audit Committee Charter, include providing oversight to the Company’s financial reporting process through periodic meetings with the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm and, with management, to review accounting, auditing, internal controls and financial reporting matters. The management of the Company is responsible for the preparation and integrity of the financial reporting information and related systems of internal controls. The Audit Committee, in carrying out its role, relies on the Company’s senior management, including senior financial management, and its independent registered public accounting firm.

We have reviewed and discussed, with senior management, the Company’s audited consolidated financial statements included in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K (for the year ended December 31, 2016) for filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Management has confirmed to us that such financial statements (i) have been prepared with integrity and objectivity and are the responsibility of management and (ii) have been prepared in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America.

We have discussed with BDO USA, LLP, the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm, the matters required to be discussed by Auditing Standard No. 1301, Communications with Audit Committees (“AS 1301”), issued by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. AS 1301 requires our independent registered public accounting firm to provide us with additional information regarding the scope and results of their audit of the Company’s financial statements, including with respect to (i) their responsibility under generally accepted auditing standards, (ii) significant accounting policies, (iii) management judgments and estimates, (iv) any significant audit adjustments, (v) any disagreements with management, and (vi) any difficulties encountered in performing the audit.

We have received from BDO USA, LLP, a letter of independence providing the disclosures required by Rule 3526, “Communication with Audit Committee Concerning Independence” with respect to any relationships between BDO USA, LLP and the Company that in their professional judgment may reasonably be thought to bear on independence. BDO USA, LLP has discussed its independence with us, and has provided written confirmation that, in its professional judgment, it is independent of the Company within the meaning of the federal securities laws.

Based on the review and discussions described above with respect to the Company’s audited consolidated financial statements, we recommended to the Board of Directors, and the Board of Directors agreed, that such financial statements be included in the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

As specified in the Audit Committee Charter, it is not the duty of the Audit Committee to plan or conduct audits or to determine that the Company’s financial statements are complete and accurate and in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America. That is the responsibility of management and the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm. In addition, it is not the responsibility of the Audit Committee to conduct investigations, to resolve disagreements, if any, between management and the independent registered public accounting firm, or to assure compliance with laws and regulations and the Company’s Code of Conduct and Ethics. In giving our recommendation to the Board of Directors, we have relied on (i) management’s representation that such financial statements have been prepared with integrity and objectivity and in conformity with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States of America, and (ii) the report of the Company’s independent registered public accounting firm with respect to such financial statements.

AUDIT COMMITTEE

Morton D. Erlich, Chair

Scott D. Baskin

Lawrence S. Clark

Alfred F. Ingulli

April 21, 2017

10


COMMON STOCK OWNERSHIP OF CERTAIN BENEFICIAL OWNERS

To the knowledge of the Company, the ownership of the Company’s outstanding Common Stock as of December 31, 2016, by persons who are beneficial owners of 5% or more of the outstanding Common Stock is set forth below.

 

Name and Address of Beneficial Owner

 

Amount and Nature of

Beneficial Ownership (*)

 

 

Percent of

Class

 

Blackrock, Inc.

 

 

3,228,868

 

 

 

11.0

%

55 East 52 nd Street

New York, NY 10055

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Vanguard Group

 

 

2,310,739

 

 

 

7.9

%

100 Vanguard Blvd.

Malvern, PA 19355

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dimensional Fund Advisors LP

 

 

2,285,883

 

 

 

7.8

%

6300 Bee Cave Road, Building One

Austin, TX 78746

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

T. Rowe Price Associates, Inc.

 

 

2,266,474

 

 

 

7.7

%

100 E. Pratt Street

Baltimore, MD 21202

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Herbert A. Kraft

 

 

2,077,543

 

 

 

7.1

%

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hotchkis and Wiley Capital Management, LLC

 

 

1,619,603

 

 

 

5.5

%

725 S. Figueroa Street, 39 th FL

Los Angeles, CA 90017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(*)

Based on information reported to the SEC by, or on behalf of, such beneficial owner.

11


To the knowledge of the Company, the ownership of the Company’s outstanding Common Stock, as of March 24, 2017, by persons who are directors and nominees for directors, the executive officers of the Company named in the Summary Compensation Table, and by all directors and officers as a group is set forth below. Unless otherwise indicated the Company believes that each of the persons set forth below has the sole power to vote and to dispose of the shares listed opposite his name.

 

Office (if any)

 

Name and Address Beneficial Owner

 

Amount and Nature of

Beneficial Ownership

 

 

Percent

of Class

 

Chairman & CEO

 

Eric G. Wintemute

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

955,041

 

(1)

 

3.3

%

Director

 

Lawrence S. Clark

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

25,590

 

(2)

 

(3

)

Director

 

John L. Killmer

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

32,262

 

 

 

(3

)

Director

 

Alfred F. Ingulli

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

18,799

 

 

 

(3

)

Director

 

M. Esmail Zirakparvar

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

24,837

 

 

 

(3

)

Director

 

Debra F. Edwards

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

13,313

 

 

 

(3

)

Director

 

Morton D. Erlich

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

11,650

 

(4)

 

(3

)

Director

 

Scott D. Baskin

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

11,296

 

 

 

(3

)

COO (AMVAC Chemical Corporation)

 

Ulrich G. Trogele

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

88,356

 

 

 

(3

)

CFO

 

David T. Johnson

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

77,283

 

(5)

 

(3

)

CAO

 

Timothy J. Donnelly

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

69,008

 

(6)

 

(3

)

Managing Director

(AMVAC Netherlands BV)

 

Ad de Jong

4695 MacArthur Court

Newport Beach, CA 92660

 

 

30,845

 

 

 

(3

)

Directors and Officers as a Group

 

 

 

 

1,358,280

 

 

 

4.7

%

 

(1)

This figure includes 38,828 shares of Common Stock Mr. Eric Wintemute is entitled to acquire pursuant to stock options exercisable within 60 days of this Report.

(2)

This figure includes 546 shares of Common Stock owned by Mr. Clark’s children, for whom Mr. Clark and his spouse are trustees or custodians and for which he disclaims beneficial ownership.

(3)

Under 1% of class.

(4)

Represents shares held by the Erlich Family Trust, in which Mr. Erlich is a trustee and beneficiary, and over which Mr. Erlich shares voting power with his spouse.

(5)

This figure includes 31,779 shares of Common Stock Mr. Johnson is entitled to acquire pursuant to stock options exercisable within 60 days of this Report.

12


(6)

This figure includes 25,000 shares of Common Stock Mr. Donnelly is entitled to acquire pursuant to stock options exercisable within 60 days of this Report.

SECTION 16(a) REPORTING COMPLIANCE

Section 16(a) of the Exchange Act requires the Company’s executive officers, directors, and persons who own more than ten percent of a registered class of the Company’s equity securities to file reports of ownership and changes in ownership with the SEC.

Based solely on the Company’s review of the copies of such forms received by the Company, or representations obtained from certain reporting persons, except as described below, the Company believes that during the year ended December 31, 2016, all Section 16(a) filing requirements applicable to its executive officers, directors, and greater than ten percent beneficial stockholders were complied with.

EMPLOYEE COMPENSATION AND ENTERPRISE RISK

The Company has concluded that its compensation policies and practices do not give rise to any risk that is reasonably likely to have a material adverse effect upon it. In reaching its conclusion, the Company has found, among other things, that all business units have a similar compensation structure and that no business unit bears a disproportionate share of the overall risk profile, profits or revenues. To the extent that a function carries a unique risk, we have attempted to mitigate that risk with one or more countervailing risk mitigation objectives. For example, in manufacturing and technology, the objective of implementing processes for new chemistries is offset by the paramount objective of safety in the workplace and surrounding communities. In sales and marketing, the objective of achieving top line sales is offset by goals for maintaining profit margins. Similarly, the risk of spending excessive amounts in acquiring a product line or new technology is offset by objectives to realize certain minimum returns on investment. Risk is further mitigated by the use of long-term incentives which encourage prudent, long-term decision making. Finally, compensation for senior executives and, derivatively, the entire workforce is subject to achievement of Company-wide financial objectives within the SMARTgoals (as defined on page 14) established by the Board and management annually.

13


COMPENSATION DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS

Compensation Objectives

Our executive compensation program has three primary objectives: to provide compensation on the basis of performance that supports key financial and strategic business outcomes; to attract, motivate and retain top talent to lead our business; and to align management’s interests with the long-term interests of stockholders.

Our first objective, to provide compensation on the basis of performance that supports the key financial and strategic business outcomes, means that we want our executives to seek optimal results in both the short and long term. One of the primary means of rewarding performance is through cash incentive compensation. Another means is through performance-based equity, which requires that the Company attain certain measures of financial success (i.e., pre-tax earnings, net sales, and total shareholder return) as compared to its industry peers. Our second objective, to attract, motivate and retain top talent to lead our business, is accomplished through ensuring that our compensation is competitive (as, for example, through benchmarking the compensation practices of similarly-situated companies) and offering multi-year vesting, to promote the retention of key talent, in the form of stock that cliff vests in three years.  Our third objective, to align management’s interests with the long-term interests of stockholders, is accomplished by ensuring that our executives are stockholders. We do this through the regular award of equity, whether in the form of restricted stock, options or performance-based shares/options, and the adoption of executive stock ownership guidelines.  We make these equity awards through our stock incentive plan, for which we are seeking approval for amendment and restatement at the 2017 Annual Meeting.

What We Reward

We expect our executives to operate at a high level and to be involved in setting and executing our business plan. Accordingly, our executives are directly involved in defining the Company’s strategy (its roadmap to success), its budget (the short term business plan), and the associated short term objectives which are established as necessary to achieve the budget (our “SMART” goals, which are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-Based). SMARTgoals are the primary measure to which each executive is held accountable.  They vary from position to position and include both company-wide goals (as, for example, net sales and net income for the CEO) and individual goals (for example, factory efficiency targets for the VP of Manufacturing).  In addition to these goals, which drive overall Company performance, we also expect our executive team to respond to changing market conditions, to solve unforeseen problems and to show leadership and initiative.  

14


Compensation Program Best Practices

The Compensation Committee continues to implement and maintain leading practices in our executive compensation program and related areas.  Our current compensation program includes features that we believe drive performance and excludes features we do not believe serve our stockholders’ long-term interests. The table below highlights the “Sound Practices” features that our compensation program includes and “Poor Pay Practices,” which are excluded.  Certain of these features are described in greater detail prosaically after the table.

 

 

 

Included Features (“Sound Practices”)

Excluded Features (“Poor Practices”)

 

   Performance-based Equity – Half of the equity awards made to executives vest based upon the achievement of either internal metrics (net sales, pre-tax income) or total stockholder return compared to a peer group.

  Caps on Individual Bonuses – Our executives’ incentive compensation is capped at 1.6 times salary for the CEO and 1 times salary for non-CEO officers.

  Clawback Policy – Our executives are subject to having incentive compensation recouped by the Company in the event of material fraud or misconduct resulting in a restatement of financial statements.

  Stock Ownership Guidelines — We have adopted share ownership requirements for both our executive officers (4X base wage for CEO and 2X base wage for CEO reports) and our directors (four years’ worth of stock awards).

  No Hedging —Our executive officers and directors are prohibited from all hedging activities (as, for example, with zero-cost collars and forward sales contracts) and holding Company securities in margin accounts.

  Consultant Independence – The Committee retains an independent compensation consultant.  Our consultant is evaluated annually for independence to ensure objectivity.

   Market Benchmarking – Compensation decisions are made in the context of relevant market comparables.

  Risk Management – Our executive officers’ compensation program has been designed and is reviewed to ensure that it does not encourage inappropriate risk-taking. (Please see page 9 of this Proxy)

  “Double Trigger” severance – Our change in control agreements require both a change in control and termination during a two year period before equity is accelerated and monetary benefits become due. (Please see page 28 of this Proxy)

  Stock Incentive Plan 162(m) Compliant – The Company’s stock incentive plan complies with IRC Code 162(m) to ensure tax deductibility for performance awards made thereunder. (Please see Exhibit A to this Proxy)

 

   No excise tax gross-ups.

  No “single trigger” severance payments.

  No guaranteed base salary increases, minimum bonuses or equity awards.

  No resetting of strike price on underwater options.

 

 

15


 

A.

High Percentage of Performance Shares

Since 2014, in making equity awards to executive officers, the Company has followed the practice of splitting those awards equally between time-based restricted stock (having a three-year, cliff-vesting period) and performance shares based upon targets for net sales, pre-tax income and total stockholder return as compared to certain peer companies.  While awarding time-based restricted stock alone does serve to encourage executives to remain with the Company, including a meaningful award of performance shares serves to motivate senior management to achieve financial targets over a multi-year performance period.  In addition, the TSR component aligns payouts with the stockholders’ experience, as the Company must perform in a manner consistent with similar investment opportunities for vesting targets to be achieved.  The performance awards also provide that the awardee may earn up to 200% of the target number of shares in the event that the Company has outperformed the targeted metrics.

 

B.

Caps on Individual Bonuses

The Company continues to follow a policy of placing individual limits on each executive’s incentive compensation. Specifically, the CEO is limited to 1.6 times his annual salary, while the other NEOs are limited to one times his or her annual salary.  Even prior to the adoption of these caps, our incentive compensation awards had not ever exceeded these limits.  Nevertheless, the Compensation Committee has put these caps in place both to eliminate the possibility that any one individual will receive an excessive share of the bonus pool and to prevent windfall payments in the event that unforeseen circumstances result in goals being drastically exceeded.

 

C.

Clawback Policy

The Company also continues to follow a clawback policy that provides, “subject to the restrictions of applicable law, in the event of material fraud or misconduct leading to a restatement of the Company’s financial statements, the incentive compensation of executives found to be complicit in such material fraud or misconduct may be recouped in whole or in part by the Board of Directors after a hearing on the matter; provided, however, that if the subject executive does not agree with the outcome of such hearing, prior to instituting litigation, the parties shall promptly refer the matter to mediation.” We believe that, this policy serves multiple purposes.  First, it sends a strong message to senior management that the Company is committed to the highest standards of legal compliance and accounting discipline.  Second, by placing paid compensation at risk, it serves as an additional incentive to senior management to live up to this commitment.  And third, the policy should help contribute to stockholders’ peace of mind that the Company is doing all that it can to ensure accuracy and completeness in its financial reporting.

 

D.

Stock Ownership Guidelines

Under the Company’s stock ownership and stock retention policy, the CEO is required to obtain and maintain four times his base wage in common stock, and Section 16 officers are similarly required to obtain and maintain two times their base wage in Company common stock.  This is to be accomplished, in part, through periodic grants of equity by the Board. For purposes of calculating the value of shares under the policy, the Company includes shares purchased on the open market, shares acquired through option exercise, vested restricted shares and vested but unexercised options.  Similarly, as more fully described in page 29 under “Director Compensation,” non-management directors are required to accumulate and maintain shares equal in amount to the number of shares granted to them during the first four full years of service on the Board.  Through these policies, the views of both executive officers and directors are better aligned with those of our stockholders.

 

E.

Anti-Hedging Policy

The Company’s Anti-Hedging Policy prohibits both directors and Section 16 officers  from both hedging and other non-monetized transactions, such as zero-cost collars, forward sales contracts or other similar instruments which allow a person to lock in much of the value of his or her stock holdings, generally in exchange for all or part of the potential for upside appreciation in the stock. The Company believes that such instruments place the subject shares at risk of unexpected disposition (as, in the case of a call or foreclosure) and change the essential nature of the investment in common stock, thus serving to misalign the holder’s interests from those of the Company’s stockholders.

 

Compensation Consultant Independence

As per NYSE Listing Standard 303A.05(c)(iv), the charter of the Compensation Committee requires that committee to evaluate the independence of its compensation consultants.  Accordingly that committee evaluated  its compensation

16


consultant, Exequity LLP, in 2016 and determined that that there is no conflict of interest with that firm and that with respect to the six factors set forth in the listing rules, Exequity was independent as indicated by the following:

 

 

 

Independence Factor

Consultant Compliance

   Provision of other services to the Company by the person that employs the consultant.

   Amount of fees received from the Company as a percentage of consultant’s total revenues.

   Policies and procedures of committee are designed to prevent conflicts of interest.

   Any business or personal relationship with a member of the Compensation Committee.

   Any stock of the Company owned by consultant.

   Any business or personal relationship with an executive officer of the Company.

   Consultant does not provide other services to the Company.

   Fees received by consultant during FY 2016 are less than 1% of the firm’s revenues for the period.

   Consultant has implemented principles to ensure independence:

   Does not provide unrelated services.

   Does not maintain a proprietary database.

   Does not trade in the stock of its clients.

   There is no relationship with a member of the Compensation Committee.

   Consultant owns no shares of the Company.

   There is no relationship with an executive officer.

We believe that, by ensuring the independence and objectivity of our compensation consultant, we provide an additional assurance that the consultant will not be influenced by improper motives, such as personal gain that could compromise its ability to recommend a fair and transparent plan of compensation for Company executives.

Consideration of “Say on Pay” Advisory Vote for Past Three Years

At each of the last three Annual Meetings of Stockholders, we have held an advisory stockholder vote on executive compensation. For the years 2013, 2014 and 2015, approximately 97%, 97% and 90%, respectively, of the shares that voted approved our executive compensation described in the subject proxy statement. The Compensation Committee and the Company viewed these results as a strong indication that the Company’s stockholders support the compensation policies and practices of the Company over this period.  Further, in the interest of keeping apprised of stockholders’ views, the Company maintains a plan of regular outreach to investors, potential investors and analysts who cover the Company’s stock.  This is done through personal meetings, telephone conversations and attendance at investment conferences.  Our Director of Investor Relations regularly briefs the Company’s Board of Directors on how stockholders view the Company, their areas of concern and suggestions for improving operations or financial performance.

The following sections further explain our rationale for our compensation practices during the last fiscal year.

Elements of 2016 Compensation

In order to cover this topic, it is useful to understand the business conditions and financial performance of the Company leading up to 2016. As reported by the Company in its public filings, 2015 was a period of modest recovery for the Company.  It followed an industry downturn that began with the Midwest corn market in 2013 and led to lower demand for corn products and excess inventory in the distribution channel.  In response to these conditions, management began to implement tactics to methodically reduce channel inventory, while continuing to protect brand value and  manage working capital and operating expenses.  As a result of these efforts, management drove down year-end inventory from $166million in 2014 to $136million in 2015, factory under absorption costs from $25million to $19million, and operating expenses from $108million to $100million. During 2015, the Company completed two product line acquisitions, while reducing overall corporate indebtedness from $98million to $68million.  In the midst of stagnant conditions domestically in 2015, the Company showed better performance compared to the industry with recorded net sales of $289million (down 3% from the prior year), net income of $6.6million (up 36% from the prior year) and gross margin up one percent.

17


During 2016, the Company outperformed 2015 in virtually every respect, despite continued declining net sales and profitability among agrichemical companies.  The Company’s net sales increased about 8% (fro m $289million in 2015 to $312million in 2016) and net income was up about 94% (from $6.6million in 2015 to $12.8million in 2016).  These results were due to several factors.  First, we enjoyed stable demand for our products in many markets (including potat oes, fruits and vegetables and peanuts) and increased sales into international markets, due in part to our 2015 product line acquisitions.  Second, with inventory of corn products in the distribution channels approaching near normal levels, the Company enj oyed increased sales in the Midwest corn market.  Third, we continued to exercise financial discipline in controlling costs, managing working capital and optimizing our factory usage in light of increased demand.  We were able to reduce year-end inventory levels from $135million in 2015 to $121million in 2016.  Further, factory under absorption costs dropped from $19million in 2015 to $17million in 2016, and, as a result, gross margins improved from 39% in 2015 to 41% in 2016.  Operating expenses increased with sales and other long term development activities, but remained at 35% of net sales.    Further, the Company used the cash generated from operations to pay down debt, thereby reducing year-end debt from $68.3million in 2015 to $41million in 2016 and in creasing our borrowing capacity from $68million to $105million under our senior credit facility.  

With respect to TSR, the Company’s performance in 2016 was above the median for the one year period as compared to companies within GICS 1510 as well as that of S&P Index peers.  In effect, the market recognized the Company’s continued financial performance in 2016 and stockholders benefitted accordingly.  With respect to the three-year and five-year TSR, the Company’s performance was below the median for both GICS 1510 and S&P Index peers.  However, it should be noted that, among public companies that materially participate in the agrichemical sector, the Company’s three-year TSR was above the median.  As mentioned above, the agrichemical sector has been in a downcycle since 2013, and the Company has been able to generate improved performance in spite of these conditions.  

Below we discuss the components of executive compensation for 2016 in light of these conditions.

Salaries — As is the case with virtually all public companies, our executives received a salary as part of their compensation package in 2016. Base salary for our CEO was 51% of total cash compensation in 2016.  Among NEOs who worked for the entire fiscal year (and received incentive compensation), base salary was approximately 68% of total cash compensation in 2016. This compares to an average among all NEO’s of about 81% in 2015, when a modest bonus was paid in light of moderately improved performance, and 100% in 2014, when no bonus was paid in light of poor financial performance.  As per the Company’s standard practice, the 2016 salaries were set in December of 2015.  In light of 2014 financial performance and in the interest of minimizing operating expenses, however, 2015 salaries were frozen in 2015.  With improved performance in 2015, 2016 salaries were increased for all but one of the NEOs by about 2.5%, in keeping with the 3% annual increase that is prevalent among public companies.  The CFO received a salary increase of about 7.5% in the interest of ensuring continued retention and in light of his consistently high performance, particularly in the area of controlling working capital and managing expenses through 2015.  The fact that salaries were not increased in 2015 demonstrates that such increases are not considered to be a form of entitlement but rather are a function of performance.  It should also be noted that the Company has historically raised salaries in excess of a modest adjustment when an executive takes on additional responsibilities. 

Incentive Compensation — In 2016, as in prior years, executives were eligible to receive annual incentive compensation in the form of a cash bonus.  Unlike salary, the cash bonus is “at risk” and varies from year to year depending upon many factors. The main reason for this element of compensation (which is typically paid in March of the subsequent year) is to reward the executive for Company performance and the executives’ individual contributions during the immediately prior year. As a general rule, assuming the Company achieves pre-tax income in in an amount equal to at least one-half of the amount forecasted in the budget for the subject year, the Company reserves 10 percent of its pre-tax income to serve as the pool from which incentive compensation may be paid.  From that pool, the Compensation Committee may, but is not obligated to, pay bonuses to some or all of the employee population. At year end, the Compensation Committee evaluates Company performance (including net sales, net income, indebtedness, and working capital measures).  If these measures fall short of the Company’s budget, then the Committee may reduce the pool at its discretion.

After determining whether any of the bonus pool will be distributed, the Committee works with the CEO and CAO, who recommend an allocation of bonuses among individuals based upon their performance.  Further, the CEO and CAO jointly review the performance of the Company’s executive officers and present their findings to the Committee.  The Committee then exercises its own discretion in setting an allocation for the CEO and considers the CEO’s recommended awards for others; in so doing, the Committee takes into account the executive’s achievement of his or her SMART goals as well as other contributions to the overall Company performance.  As mentioned above, the Company caps individual incentive awards for executive officers, limiting the CEO to 1.6 times salary and other NEOs to 1 times salary.  The

18


Company has not established specific targets for calculating incentive compensation for NEOs from year-to-year.  As a threshold matter, to the extent that the Company’s pre-tax income is less than one-half of forecasted  pre-tax income, the NEOs have typically received no bonus (as was the case in 2014).  To the ext ent that pre-tax income exceeds one-half of the forecast, the bonus accrual is proportionately larger, and NEO compensation has also increased.  Historically speaking, over the past five years, the CEO’s annual bonus has ranged from a low of zero (in 2014)   to a high of 98% of base wage in 2012, while that of NEO’s other than the CEO has ranged from a low of zero (in 2014) to a high of about 73% of base wage in 2012.  

In order to motivate the executive team to exceed budgeted financial performance in 2016, the Compensation Committee provided that, to the extent pre-tax income exceeded that set forth in the 2016 budget, the Company could reserve 30 percent of pre-tax income to add to the incentive bonus pool.  The Committee provided further that, to the extent the pool were to reach $5million in size, then the reserve would drop back to 10 percent of pre-tax income.  As mentioned above, the Company’s financial performance in 2016 outpaced that of 2015 in nearly all respects.  Over the course of 2016, the NEOs greatly exceeded their goals with respect to profitability (including both pre-tax income and net income) and exceeded their goals relating to working capital, factory efficiency, debt, cash flow, gross margin, and general improvement of the balance sheet.  With the improvement in pre-tax profit, the Company was able to set aside a larger incentive pool (as compared to 2015) and the Committee awarded increased incentive bonuses to the executives, in recognition of stronger financial performance.  

Equity —We believe that in providing equity to senior executives and requiring that a shares equal in value to a multiple of base salary be accumulated by such executives over time, the interests of our executives will be more fully aligned with those of our stockholders. The Company has adopted a policy to prohibit short sales or hedging transactions by executives and members of the Board. Through these awards and these policies, the Company believes that executives will take a longer view of the Company and will seek to enhance stockholder value several years into the future. Equity awards also serve as a means of encouraging future performance and of retaining key employees over the long term. In addition, it is highly prevalent among peer companies to award equity to executives regularly. In the Company’s case, these awards are typically made early in the fiscal year.  We believe that it would be difficult to attract, motivate, and retain executives without offering them a share in the Company’s long term prospects.

As more fully described below in “Benchmarking and the Compensation Consultant,” the Compensation Committee periodically conducts a benchmarking study to take into account, among other things, the prevalence (by amount and type) of equity awarded to executive officers of similarly situated companies.  These studies typically include information on prevalent rates at which available shares are consumed under equity plans of peers.  In awarding equity, the Board considers not only these studies, but also the compensation history of the Company, retention issues, and the burden of expensing equity awards.  For example, in light of the fact that no incentive compensation was paid for 2014 performance and a reduction in force was conducted in December of that year, in the interest of ensuring retention, the Board pulled its 2015 equity award forward in time and granted restricted stock to executive officers in December 2014.  Accordingly, the Board awarded no equity to executive officers in 2015 (except for then new-hire, Ulrich Trogele).  In 2016, the Board resumed its normal schedule and awarded equity in March 2016 in the form of one-half time-based restricted shares and one-half performance shares.  However, at management’s request, in the interest of minimizing expenses, the award among NEOs was on average between one-third and one-half of the median equity awards for executives in comparable positions at peer companies (Proxy Peers, as defined below).  

Other Benefits —In 2016, the Company continued to offer a comprehensive suite of other benefits to its executives, including group health (medical, dental and vision) and life insurance to all of our employees, including key executive officers. Our medical plan takes the form of PPO programs which are largely self-funded.  However, the Company limited its claims exposure by maintaining stop loss coverage on an individual basis and placed its third party administration with a nationally-known insurance carrier. Health benefits premiums were highly-subsidized by the Company and offered extremely competitive terms (e.g., low co-payments and office visit charges). As a corollary to the group health plan, the Company continued to promote wellness through a voluntary program, through which the Company gives financial incentives for fitness, participation in group events (e.g., 5K, walking, yoga), and diet planning, among other things.  These programs are a powerful tool in recruiting and not only raise morale, but also serve to ensure the continued health of the workforce. Our executives also enjoyed life insurance and long term disability insurance coverage. In addition, certain executives received an automobile allowance and, in the case of the CEO, reimbursement for other perquisites (e.g., country club membership) that provide a venue for the cultivation of business relationships.

Finally, in 2016, our executives (and, in fact, any full time employee) continued to have the option to participate in the Company’s 401K retirement savings plan, under which the Company matches up to 5% of the participant’s salary (subject to

19


an annual cap) and the Employee Stock Purchase Plan, which permits the purchase of Company shares at a discount through payroll deduction.

Benchmarking and the Compensation Consultant

During 2016 the Compensation Committee retained independent compensation consultant, Exequity, to update the group of comparator companies for purposes of benchmarking 2016 compensation.  Exequity conducted these studies in both March and September of 2016.  In connection with those efforts, Exequity defined a group of comparators, consisting of 14 publicly traded specialty chemical companies having similar revenues (ranging between $179 million and $940 million per annum) and market capitalization (ranging between $105 million and $2.25 billion with a median of $530 million). As an additional point of reference, Exequity also used Mercer’s 2015 Benchmark Database Survey filtered for companies with revenues of $100 million to $400 million per annum.  In defining the comparator group, Exequity focused on product lines, Global Industry Classification Standard  numbers, and a proxy review to determine whether and to what extent peer companies identified the Company (or others in the Company’s peer group) as comparators.  The comparator group (“Proxy Peers”) identified by Exequity included Aceto Corporation (ACET), Balchem Corporation (BCPC), Calgon Carbon Corporation (CCC), Chase Corporation (CCF), Hawkins, Inc. (HWKN), Innophos Holdings Inc. (IPHS), Innospec Inc. (IOSP), Intrepid Potash, Inc. (IPI), KMG Chemicals, Inc. (KMG), Landec Corporation (LNDC), LSB Industries, Inc. (LXU), OMNOVA Solutions, Inc. (OMN), Quaker Chemical Corporation (KWR) and Trecora Resources (TREC).  It should be noted that American Vanguard is the only publicly traded crop protection Company of its size, and, with the exception of Aceto Corporation (which has a small percentage of net sales arising from crop protection products), no Proxy Peers operate at all in the crop protection sector.

Using the Proxy Peers as a reference point, the Company found that its 2016 CEO compensation yielded the following comparative results.

 

The CEO salary ($620,000) was slightly above the median ($606,000) of the Proxy Peers.

 

CEO annual incentive compensation ($589,000) was slightly above the median target bonus ($577,000) for Proxy Peers.

 

Total cash for the CEO ($1.209 million) was slightly below the median target total cash ($1.217 million) for Proxy Peers.

 

Equity: shares granted in 2016 to the CEO ($401,000) was below the 25 th percentile ($721,000) for Proxy Peers.

 

Total direct compensation for the Company’s CEO ($1.664 million) was just above the 25 th percentile ($1.607 million) for total target direct compensation of the Proxy Peers.

On average, according to the Exequity study, compensation for other NEOs yielded the following results.  Salary was in the second quartile of actual salaries for Proxy Peers, annual incentive compensation and total direct compensation was between the 50 th and 75 th percentile of target for Proxy Peers, and equity was below the 25 th percentile of target equity for such peers.

Closing Comments

The Company believes that its executive compensation meets its primary objectives.  In 2016, the Company’s financial performance improved.  Net sales were up by 8% in a challenging market, and gross margin improved by two percent, while net income nearly doubled.  In addition, management outperformed in improving its balance sheet and working capital, inventory, factory under absorption costs, and debt. Further, the Company’s borrowing capacity improved from $68MM to $105MM year-over-year.  This represents the second straight year of improved financial performance and contrasts with the agrichemical industry which, on average, has experienced declining sales and profitability for the same period.  In light of improved profitability and working capital (in excess of target), the NEOs received increased incentive compensation which was at or somewhat above that of Proxy Peers.  However, taken together with equity awards that were below the 25 th percentile for that peer group, total compensation for the NEOs was at about the median.  In short, NEOs received improved pay for improved performance and, in any event, remained within a reasonable range as compared to its Proxy Peers.  For these reasons, the Company believes that we continue to pay for performance.

20


COMPENSATION COMMITTEE REPORT

The Compensation Committee has reviewed and discussed the Compensation Discussion and Analysis required by Item 402 (b) of Regulation S-K with management and, based on the review and discussions referred to in that Item, the Committee recommended to the Board that the Compensation Discussion and Analysis be incorporated by reference in the Form 10-K.

Lawrence S. Clark, Chair

Morton D. Erlich

Alfred F. Ingulli

21


EXECUTIVE OFFICERS OF THE COMPANY

The following persons are the current NEOs of the Company:

 

Name of  Director/Officer

Age

 

Capacity

 

 

Eric G. Wintemute

61

Chairman and CEO

Ulrich G. Trogele

59

Executive Vice President, COO

David T. Johnson

60

Vice President, CFO and Treasurer

Ad de Jong

64

Managing Director, Amvac Netherlands BV

Timothy J. Donnelly

57

CAO, General Counsel, & Secretary

 

Eric G. Wintemute has served as a director of the Company since June 1994. He was appointed Chairman and CEO in June 2011. Mr. Wintemute has also served as President and CEO from July 1994 until June 2011, after having been appointed Executive Vice President and COO of the Company in January 1994.

Ulrich G. Trogele has served as Chief Operating Officer of AMVAC Chemical Corporation, the Company’s principal operating subsidiary, since January 2015. Prior to joining the Company, Mr. Trogele spent 28 years in positions of increasing responsibility within the agribusiness sectors of agrochemicals, biologicals and plant nutrition.  His career included 10 years at FMC Corporation, as President of Asia-Pacific and several years as North American Area Director for FMC’s agricultural solutions business.

David T. Johnson has served as Vice President, CFO, and Treasurer of the Company since March, 2008. Mr. Johnson served as Finance Director for Amcor Flexibles UK Ltd., a $500 million manufacturer of decorative packaging and a subsidiary of Amcor, a multibillion dollar corporation based in Australia, from June 2003 through March 2008. Prior to that he served as Vice President of Finance for Sterer Engineering, a subsidiary of Eaton Aerospace, an $8 billion Cleveland based multinational Company from April 2001 through June 2003.

Ad de Jong has served as Managing Director of AMVAC Netherlands BV since July 2012. Prior to joining AMVAC, Mr. de Jong held positions of increasing responsibility over a 23 year period at Chemtura Corporation culminating with the position of Vice President Crop Protection for Europe/Middle East/Africa. Prior to his service at Chemtura, Mr. de Jong served in the advisory service with the Dutch Ministry of Agriculture.

Timothy J. Donnelly has served as Chief Administrative Officer, General Counsel and Secretary of the Company since June 2010.  He began his service with the Company in October 2005 as Vice President, General Counsel & Assistant Secretary, was appointed Secretary in June 2007 and assumed responsibility for Human Resources and Risk Management in 2009.  Prior to his work with the Company, from September 2000 through October 2005, Mr. Donnelly served as Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for DDi Corp. (Nasdaq—DDIC) a manufacturer of quick-turn, high-technology printed circuit boards.

22


EXECUTIVE COMPENSATION

The following table sets forth the aggregate cash and other compensation for services rendered for the year ended December 31, 2016, paid or awarded by the Company and its subsidiaries to the CEO, CFO, the three most highly compensated executive officers other than the CEO and CFO, and any persons who departed from the Company during the subject year and, but for such departure, would have been in any of the aforementioned categories (the “NEOs”).

SUMMARY COMPENSATION TABLE

 

Name and Principal Position

(a)

 

Year

(b)

 

Salary

($)

(c)

 

 

Bonus (1)

($)

(d)

 

 

Stock

Awards

($)

(e)

 

 

Option

Awards

($)

(f)

 

 

Non-Equity

Incentive Plan

Compensation

($)

(g)

 

 

Change in

Pension Value

and Non-

Qualified

Deferred

Compensation

Earnings

($)

(h)

 

 

All

Other

Compen-

sation

($)

(i)

 

 

Total

($)

(j)

 

Eric G. Wintemute

 

2016

 

 

620,125

 

 

 

589,000

 

 

 

401,322

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

53,720

 

 

 

1,664,167

 

 

 

2015

 

 

605,000

 

 

 

150,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

52,920

 

 

 

807,920

 

 

 

2014

 

 

605,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

596,612

 

 

 

275,210

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

52,370

 

 

 

1,529,192

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ulrich G. Trogele (2)

 

2016

 

 

368,654

 

 

 

175,000

 

 

 

119,412

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

54,608

 

 

 

717,674

 

 

 

2015

 

 

346,154

 

 

 

222,000

 

 

 

424,815

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

41,128

 

 

 

1,034,097

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David T. Johnson

 

2016

 

 

342,087

 

 

 

165,000

 

 

 

105,650

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

29,120

 

 

 

641,857

 

 

 

2015

 

 

318,500

 

 

 

75,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28,620

 

 

 

422,120

 

 

 

2014

 

 

318,500

 

 

 

 

 

 

157,047

 

 

 

78,118

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28,370

 

 

 

582,035

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ad de Jong (3)

 

2016

 

 

283,367

 

 

 

125,000

 

 

 

95,275

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

20,500

 

 

 

524,142

 

 

 

2015

 

 

308,000

 

 

 

43,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

21,251

 

 

 

372,251

 

 

 

2014

 

 

320,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

165,581

 

 

 

74,043

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

23,681

 

 

 

583,305

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Timothy J. Donnelly

 

2016

 

 

297,250

 

 

 

145,000

 

 

 

96,189

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28,430

 

 

 

566,869

 

 

 

2015

 

 

290,000

 

 

 

50,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

27,930

 

 

 

367,930

 

 

 

2014

 

 

290,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

142,981

 

 

 

71,060

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

27,680

 

 

 

531,721

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cynthia B. Smith (4)

 

2016

 

 

254,320

 

 

 

 

 

 

101,169

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

22,571

 

 

 

378,060

 

 

 

2015

 

 

305,000

 

 

 

50,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28,620

 

 

 

383,620

 

 

 

2014

 

 

305,000

 

 

 

 

 

 

150,397

 

 

74,095

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

28,370

 

 

 

483,767

 

 

(1)

Amounts reflect bonus payments for service rendered in the subject year. These payments are made in March of the following year.

(2)

All other compensation reflects vacation earnings paid in the amount of $21,288 and $8,308 for 2016 and 2015, respectively. Further, bonus and stock awards for 2015 includes a signing bonus of $150,000 and equity award equal to $424,815 in connection with his hiring.

(3)

Salary for 2016, 2015 and 2014 reflects the effect of euro to dollar currency exchange.

(4)

Cynthia B. Smith is not a current NEO (as she left the company on August 31, 2016); nevertheless, she is included in this table only because it is likely that she would have been an NEO but for her departure during the subject reporting year. Salary amount for 2016 reflect vacation earnings paid in the amount of $34,573.

 

23


 

ALL OTHER COMPENSATION

 

 

 

 

 

Perquisites

($)

 

 

Tax

Reimbursements

($)

 

 

Insurance

Premiums

($)

 

 

Company

Contributions

to Defined

Contribution

Plans

($)(3)

 

 

Vacation/Severance

Payments /

Accruals

($)

 

 

Change in

Control

Payments /

Accruals

($)

 

Eric G. Wintemute

 

2016

 

 

38,400

 

(1)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

13,250

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

38,100

 

(1)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,750

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

37,800

 

(1)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,500

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ulrich G. Trogele

 

2016

 

18,000

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

13,250

 

 

 

21,288

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

18,000

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,750

 

 

 

8,308

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

David T. Johnson

 

2016

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

13,250

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,750

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,500

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ad de Jong

 

2016

 

 

20,500

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

21,251

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

23,681

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Timothy J. Donnelly

 

2016

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

1,380

 

 

 

13,250

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

1,380

 

 

 

12,750

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

1,380

 

 

 

12,500

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cynthia B. Smith

 

2016

 

 

9,200

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

1,380

 

 

 

11,991

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2015

 

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,750

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2014

 

13,800

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

2,070

 

 

 

12,500

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(1)

Automobile allowance of $18,000, $18,000 and $18,000 for the years ended December 31, 2016, 2015 and 2014, respectively; and personal expense reimbursements of $20,400, $20,100 and $19,800 relating to country club membership fees and assessments in the years ended December 31, 2016, 2015, and 2014, respectively.

(2)

Automobile allowance.

(3)

Effective January 1, 2005, the Company matches employee contributions to its 401(k) savings plan dollar for dollar up to 5% of base salary.

 

 

24


GRANTS OF PLAN-BASED AWARDS

The following table sets forth the grant of plan-based awards for the year ended December 31, 2016 to the NEOs.

 

 

 

 

 

Estimated Future

Payouts Under

Non-Equity

Incentive Plan

Awards

 

Estimated Future

Payouts Under

Equity

Incentive Plan

Awards

 

All Other Stock

Awards: Number

of Shares of Stock or

 

 

All Other Option

Awards: Number

of  Securities

Underlying

 

 

Exercise or Base

Price of

 

 

Full Grant

Date Fair

 

Name

(a)

 

Grant

Date

(b)

 

Threshold

($)

(c)

 

Target

($)

(d)

 

Maximum

($)

(e)

 

Threshold

($)

(f)

 

Target

($)

(g)

 

Maximum

($)

(h)

 

Units

(#)

(i)

 

 

Options

(#)

(j)

 

 

Option Awards

($/Share)

(k)

 

 

Value of Stock

($) (1)

(l)

 

Eric G. Wintemute

 

1/6/16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13,618

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

15.08

 

 

 

205,359

 

Ulrich G. Trogele

 

1/6/16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4,052

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

15.08

 

 

 

61,104

 

David T. Johnson

 

1/6/16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,585

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

15.08

 

 

 

54,062

 

Ad de Jong

 

1/6/16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3,233

 

(2)

 

 

 

 

15.08

 

 

 

48,754

 

Timothy J. Donnelly

 

1/6/16