Chipotle is promising to pay top executives up to $1 million if they don't ditch the chain before it finds a new CEO

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Chipotle BurritoHollis JohnsonChipotle.

  • Chipotle is promising executives major bonuses if they don't quit while the company looks for a new CEO.
  • Chipotle's CFO is set to make $1 million if he stays at Chipotle for one year after the chain replaces founder Steve Ells with a new CEO.
  • The company's CMO, who was previously placed on a three-month leave after being arrested on charges of cocaine possession, will receive a $600,000 bonus.

Chipotle is paying more than $1.6 million to make sure executives don't jump ship before the struggling burrito chain finds a new CEO.

Chipotle Steve EllsAP ImagesChipotle founder and CEO Steve Ells.

On Friday, Chipotle reported in an SEC filing that it had entered into retention agreements with certain executives to convince them to stay at the chain as it searches for a replacement for founder Steve Ells.

As part of the agreement, Chipotle will pay CFO Jack Hartung $1 million if he stays at Chipotle for one year following the appointment of a new CEO.

CMO Mark Crumpacker is set to receive $600,000 on the one-year anniversary of the appointment of Ells' replacement. Crumpacker had previously taken a three-month leave of absence in 2016 after being arrested on charges of cocaine possession.

Chipotle announced in November that Ells plans to step down as it begins its hunt for a new CEO. According to Chipotle, the company is looking for "a new leader with demonstrated turnaround expertise to help address the challenges facing the company, improve execution, build customer trust, and drive sales."

Chipotle has struggled since an E. coli crisis two years ago drove customers away from the chain. Shares of the company are down more than 60% since peaking in August 2015.

The Future of Retail 2018 by the BI Intelligence Research Team.
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