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Fired Xerox CEO to Get $800,000 a Year

STAMFORD, Conn. — Rick Thoman, who presided over Xerox Corp.'s (XRX.N) unsuccessful restructuring and was ousted as chief executive officer in May, will receive an annual retirement benefit of $800,000 and other payments, Xerox disclosed in federal filings on Monday.

In addition to the pension, the 56-year-old Thoman will receive $375,000 as a prorated 2000 bonus in February of 2001, and will also be paid $200,000 in cash in lieu of continued life-insurance benefits, Xerox revealed in documents filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Thoman was ousted May 11, after overseeing several earnings disappointments and a sharp fall in the company's stock during his brief but rocky tenure of 13 months.

The Stamford, Conn.-based photocopier giant has been grappling with bad debts, heightened competition and a painful reorganization of its worldwide sales force as it seeks to transform itself from a maker of free-standing copiers to a provider of digital printers connected to computer networks.

Xerox shares have plunged by 66 percent over the last year, with the shares at 16-3/4, up 1/16, in afternoon trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Monday.

Thoman joined Xerox in 1997 as president and chief operating officer, and was promoted to CEO in April of 1999. He was previously senior vice president and chief financial officer of International Business Machines Corp (IBM.N).

After Thoman's firing, Xerox Chairman Paul Allaire returned to his former position as CEO.

The Thoman separation details were disclosed in a letter from Allaire to Thoman, dated May 11. Thoman was not awarded any new stock options or grants as part of the package.

All of Thoman's existing stock options were "underwater,'' or without value because they did not meet certain levels.

"The separation package in major part reflects the written agreement entered into with Rick when he joined Xerox in 1997,'' said Christa Carone, Xerox spokeswoman. She declined other

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