Steve Easterbrook has been generously rewarded for his efforts to transform McDonald’s (MCD) into a "modern, progressive burger company.” The CEO’s compensation nearly doubled last year, despite the fast food chain recording fewer customer visits, pressure from rival Wendy’s (WEN) and little interest from investors.

According to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing, Easterbrook earned $15.4 million in total, up from $7.9 million the prior year. That included a base salary rise of 24 percent to $1.3 million and stock and options worth $9 million, up 80 percent on 2015.

Easterbrook’s performance-based bonus also more than trebled to $4.6 million, while he was rewarded with $523,665 in perks, including a car allowance, use of the company aircraft for personal trips, security, life insurance and financial planning.

McDonald’s other top executives similarly enjoyed substantial pay increases in 2016. Chief financial officer Kevin Ozan earned $4.4 million in 2016, more than double his $2.1 million 2015 total, while chief restaurant officer Douglas Goare pay rose to $4.8 million, up from $3.3 million the previous year. After Easterbrook, the highest paid executive was retired chief administrative officer Peter Bensen, who, at $5.9 million, earned a 48 percent raise in his final year with the company.

Why the Big Raise?

McDonald’s applauded Easterbrook for the work he has done in turning around the business and added that the significant increase in his pay was mainly due to this being his first full year as CEO. Easterbrook was promoted to the position in January 2015, having previously served as the company’s chief brand officer.

Under his leadership, McDonald’s has sought to cut costs, gain efficiency and attract customers by refranchising restaurants, overhauling management, revamping its menu, renovating stores and providing digital ordering. Easterbrook also introduced new promotions such as all-day breakfast and made greater efforts to focus on food quality and taste. That includes plans to use only cage-free eggs by 2025, fresh beef patties in quarter pounders and rid Chicken McNuggets of artificial preservatives. (See also: McDonald’s Latest Initiative Is Adventurous.)

Despite early optimism, Easterbrook’s strategy has yet to gain any real traction. Company executives recently claimed that the fast food chain lost an estimated 500 million customer transactions in its key U.S. market since 2012. (See also: McDonald's Plans to Win Back Customers.)

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