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Disney meet expected upbeat due to ’92 stock climb

Next month’s annual meeting for Walt Disney Co. will be in its usual good humor, laden with a touch of Magic Kingdom spirit.

For good reason.

Disney’s stock climbed 50% during 1992. To make the shares more available to investors, the stock was split four-for-one last February. The only loser in the deal, according to Disney’s recent proxy, was the Bass Family. Last year, the Texas billionaires owned a hefty 25 million shares, or 18.46% of Disney. Post-split, that stake has since plunged to just 6.28%.

One possible point of tension could be compensation, a typical sore spot for shareholders. For his labors, Disney chairman Michael Eisner could pocket $ 200 million for 1992, having cashed in his tremendous lode of stock options before year-end to avoid a possible tax bite this year (Daily Variety, Dec. 2).

Also cashing in on stock options before year-end were Richard Nunis, chairman of Walt Disney Attractions, who made $ 8.4 million, and Disney executive VP for strategic planning and development, Lawrence Murphy, who received $ 1 million.

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