Law firm Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz is again at the center of a massive and controversial CEO payout, representing the board of Home Depot Inc.that gave its departing boss a $210 million goodbye.
Wachtell’s work for Home Depot marks the third time in recent years that it gave advice to boards during other large payout controversies, including executive ousters at Morgan Stanley and the New York Stock Exchange.
Home Depot confirmed Wachtell is representing its board. Wachtell, a respected New York city corporate law firm led by prominent takeover attorney Martin Lipton, did not respond to a call seeking comment on Home Depot.
The home improvement retailer said on Wednesday that Chairman and Chief Executive Robert Nardelli had resigned after a year of heavy criticism of the company’s underperformance and Nardelli’s pay package. The company also found past problems with its stock option grants.
Nardelli’s $210 million exit package sparked widespread criticism and thrust Wachtell back in the CEO pay spotlight.
Martin Lipton was also chairman of the legal-advisory committee of the NYSE, where former Chairman Richard Grasso was forced out in 2003 after a furor over his $187.5 million pay package.