Westinghouse chief sees profits ahead Lego on the hot seat at the company's annual meeting.

April 30, 1992|By Ted Shelsby | Ted Shelsby,Staff Writer

PITTSBURGH -- Westinghouse Electric Corp. Chairman Paul E. Lego predicted yesterday that the company would return to the black this year and faced shareholder charges that he profited while presiding over one of the toughest financial periods in the company's history.

Addressing shareholders at Westinghouse's annual meeting, Mr. Lego said there were no plans for additional layoffs.

That issue is of particular interest to the company's approximately 12,000 Electronic Systems Group employees in Maryland. Westinghouse's Maryland work force felt the brunt of the company's decision last year to eliminate 4,000 jobs. Approximately 2,500 of the cuts were at operations in Hunt Valley and Linthicum.

Mr. Lego evidently expected investor criticism of a stock option incentive plan that could offset a cut of more than $1 million in cash compensation last year as a result of the company's poor performance. Westinghouse posted a loss of $1.1 billion last year, in contrast to a $268 million profit the previous year.

One of the biggest rounds of applause came when Mr. Lego told the 800 shareholders about a letter he had received from a shareholder in Illinois who said that he and the board should resign or be fired.

A stockholder who said he was a former Westinghouse employee suggested yesterday that Mr. Lego accept a $1 annual salary based on the company's poor performance.

When Mr. Lego declined, the investor replied: "Turn it [the company] around, Paul, and then take your money."

Mr. Lego was awarded stock options in April and December 1991 amounting to 700,000 shares, but has not exercised them.

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