The recently installed bosses of UK-based cable operator NTL are due to split a $50 million (€39m; £28m) handout between them.

According to its latest filing with America's Securities and Exchange Commission, the company -- listed in the US but with its main operations in the UK -- has agreed generous share option packages with chairman James Mooney (48) and ceo Simon Duffy (54).

Mooney, who took over in March last year, will receive an estimated $36m under a variety of options and rights due to mature over three to five years; Duffy, ceo since August, will gain around $14m over three years. Incredibly, there are no performance criteria.

NTL, whose payouts match US norms, has been criticised in Britain for the scale of its remuneration packages. Last year, former ceo Barclay Knapp walked away with $10m in cash, shares and options after steering the company to the brink of insolvency.

In the last year, NTL has lost $726m. However, its stock price has surged 313% since it emerged from bankruptcy protection in early 2003.

Data sourced from: Times Online (UK); additional content by WARC staff