Clock starts ticking on Leif Johansson's retirement from AstraZeneca chairman role — report
After seven eventful years marked by a takeover bid, a turnaround mission and some political turmoil, AstraZeneca might be parting ways with its chairman, Leif Johansson.
The British drugmaker’s board is beginning to plan Johannson’s succession as a cap on his tenure looms, Sky News reported. Sources said there was no formal timeline but some action from AstraZeneca’s nomination and governance committee.
Under FTSE-100 regulations, board members are not considered “independent” if they remain in their positions beyond nine years.
Johansson, who previously served as CEO of AB Volvo and had stints at AB Electrolux and LM Ericsson, was recruited to AstraZeneca’s board in 2012, and soon after helped poach Pascal Soriot away from Roche to serve as the company’s chief. The two worked together to help AstraZeneca bounce back from a raft of patent expirations and successfully fended off Pfizer’s attempt to execute a $118 billion hostile takeover in 2014.
The Swedish exec has also lent an influential voice in macro topics that often reverberate through the industry. Last October, for instance, he stirred up some anxiety when he told the French newspaper Le Monde that the pharma giant was halting further investment in the UK amid negotiations of the transition deal.
His remunerations totaled £690,000 in 2018, making him one of the best-paid chairs of an FTSE-100 company according to Sky.
With contribution by Natalie Grover.
Image: Leif Johansson ASTRAZENECA