The verdict is in — the old way of doing business is over. Join us at Inman Connect New York Jan. 23-25, when together we’ll conquer today’s market challenges and prepare for tomorrow’s opportunities. Defy the market and bet big on your future.
Rocket Companies CEO Varun Krishna has been granted a seat on the mortgage giant’s board of directors, which has been expanded from seven members to eight to accommodate the move.
A veteran fintech executive who has held product management roles at companies including Intuit, PayPal, Groupon and Microsoft, Krishna succeeded interim CEO Bill Emerson on Sept. 5. His election to the board became effective Dec. 21, and his term expires at the company’s 2026 annual meeting, the company disclosed in a regulatory filing Thursday.
Krishna, who could haul in as much as $20 million next year as Rocket’s CEO (including $3.125 million in base salary and bonuses, and up to $16.875 million in stock and options awards), won’t earn additional compensation for his service on the board.
Jay Farner, who presided over Rocket Companies’ 2020 initial public offering and initiated the company’s transition to a fintech platform, retired on June 1 after 27 years with the company. Farner served as vice chairman of Rocket’s board from March 2020 to February 2023.
Farner’s 2020 compensation totaled $51.7 million, including a $30.5 million bonus and $20.4 million in stock and option awards. His 2021 compensation dropped to $1.6 million — an $800,000 base salary, plus a cash bonus of an equal amount.
Board members who are not affiliated with Rocket are paid an annual cash retainer fee of $50,000, a cash meeting fee of $3,000 per meeting and stock options valued at $200,000.
The seven other members of Rocket’s board of directors are:
- Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Rocket Companies
- Jennifer Gilbert, Dan Gilbert’s spouse and the founder and CEO of Amber Engine
- Bill Emerson, president and COO of Rocket Companies
- Matthew Rizik, CEO of Rock Ventures
- Suzanne Shank, president, CEO and co-founder of Siebert Williams Shank & Co.
- Nancy Tellem, executive chair of Eko
- Jonathan Mariner, founder and president of TaxDay
Emerson was appointed to Rocket’s board in February to fill the seat vacated by Farner. Rizik and Shank were reelected to Rocket’s board of directors at the company’s June 13 annual meeting.
While providing home loans through Rocket Mortgage is Rocket’s biggest business, it also helps consumers line up real estate services and personal loans through subsidiaries Rocket Homes and Rocket Loans.
Rocket’s $1.27 billion acquisition of Truebill, a personal finance app that tracks spending and helps users budget and boost their credit scores, furthered the company’s long-term goal of becoming a provider of fintech services. After acquiring Truebill in 2021, Rocket rebranded the company as Rocket Money last year. Connecting the personal finance app to the rest of the Rocket platform has allowed Rocket to market mortgages and other services to the app’s users.
Rocket racked up nearly $1 billion in losses during the last three months of 2022 and the first three months of 2023 before turning things around in the second and third quarters of this year and generating $254 million in profits.
Get Inman’s Mortgage Brief Newsletter delivered right to your inbox. A weekly roundup of all the biggest news in the world of mortgages and closings delivered every Wednesday. Click here to subscribe.