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May 2021

International survey: This is how much finance executives earn in the USA and Europe

CFO Salary Benchmark 2021

Paris, May 25, 2021 - French FinTech startup Spendesk surveyed more than 300 finance executives from the CFO Connect community on a range of salary and compensation topics. Survey results show that there are large differences in pay within Europe and the United Kingdom, in comparison with the USA.

Strong disparities between countries

Average salaries in the US are much higher across all job titles (€151,000 for a finance executive).

Finance executives in France on average earn much less (€82,500) than their colleagues in Germany (€104,000) and the UK (€125,000). British CFOs earn on average 78% more than their French counterparts.

The gap widens with experience

CFOs with more than 15 years of experience earn twice as much as those at the beginning of their careers. There is a 24% difference in salary between CFOs with less than 5 years experience and those with 10 years experience. And the gap widens further (52.5%) between those with 10 to 15 years of experience.

Company size plays an important role

The pay gap can be as much as 67% between someone working in a small company (under 50 FTEs) and someone in a business with 250 to 500 employees.

Industry has little impact with one exception

The salaries of finance executives do not really depend on the sector of activity. However, the automotive industry is an exception: the average salary here is 14.5% higher compared to peers in other industries.

Extras also fluctuate with geography

The study reveals that 78% of finance executives in the US receive stock options, far ahead of the UK (59.5%). German and French CFOs (71% and 70% respectively) also receive more than British.

54% of respondents have a bonus scheme as part of their compensation. Again, we can see big differences between countries: with 60% in the US compared to only 38% in the UK for instance.

In the context of the pandemic, 97% of respondents said they were able to work remotely. But in France, only 27% of finance teams have this option, compared to more than half in Germany and the UK, and 80% in the US.

The full report is available to download here:

About Spendesk & CFO Connect

Spendesk’s all-in-one spend management solution streamlines the tedious admin associated with spending and managing money at work – to liberate businesses and their people to do their best work. Founded in 2016 by Rodolphe Ardant, Guilhem Bellion and Jordane Giuly within French startup studio eFounders, Spendesk now serves over 2,500 businesses such as Algolia, Soundcloud, Curve, Doctolib, Gousto, Raisin, Sezane, Wefox. Headquartered in Paris, Spendesk has offices in Berlin, London and San Francisco. Spendesk-backed CFO Connect is the fastest-growing global community of finance leaders with more than 6,000 members.


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