Shareholders voice displeasure with Oracle's pay watchdogs

By Noel Randewich

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Shareholders in Oracle Corp (ORCL.N) have sent a message to the people who set Chief Executive Larry Ellison's pay, re-electing the directors on the board's compensation committee by much smaller margins than the rest of the directors, according to a filing on Friday.

All board members received majority votes by wide margins except for the members of the compensation committee - Bruce Chizen, George Conrades and Naomi Seligman - who each won re-election with margins of about 53 percent or less, including non-voted shares, according to a filing on Friday.

At Oracle's shareholders meeting on Thursday, a majority opposed the company's executive compensation policy but supported the board of directors in separate votes. At the time, Oracle gave a tally for the vote on compensation but did not provide figures for votes on individual board members.

All the votes were symbolic, but the close vote on the three directors underscored growing discontent over what some investors call inflated pay packages.

Challenges to 69-year old Ellison's pay come as the world's No. 2 software maker, which he co-founded four decades ago, tries to fend off smaller, aggressive companies offering software and Internet-based products at prices that often undercut Oracle.

Ellison owns about 25 percent of Oracle.

(Reporting by Noel Randewich; Editing by Tim Dobbyn)

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