Ian Read bags $19.5 mil­lion, tak­ing a big pay cut for his swan song as Pfiz­er CEO and leav­ing the phar­ma gi­ant at a cross­roads

Ian Read passed the CEO ti­tle on to his hand picked suc­ces­sor Al­bert Bourla at the be­gin­ning of this year, but not be­fore one last big haul of ex­ec­u­tive com­pen­sa­tion. His over­all num­ber came down sub­stan­tial­ly from 2017, large­ly due to a big drop in the stock op­tion col­umn, but he still scored $19.5 mil­lion for 2018 com­pen­sa­tion.

Read’s big re­tire­ment haul came in 2017, when he took home a chart-top­ping $27.9 mil­lion pay pack­age that in­clud­ed an $8 mil­lion bonus for stay­ing on an ex­tra year. His vic­to­ry lap at the phar­ma gi­ant came as the com­pa­ny was fac­ing a sea change in the in­dus­try, with a lid on an­nu­al price hikes and a shift to the in­ter­nal pipeline.

Alex Gorsky speaks dur­ing a meet­ing be­tween Pres­i­dent Trump and man­u­fac­tur­ing ex­ec­u­tives at the White House in Feb­ru­ary 2017 AP Pho­to

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His num­ber for 2018 leaves Read in the third place spot among Big Phar­ma pay pack­ages, right be­hind J&J’s Alex Gorsky, who al­so saw his pay plunge in a per­ilous year for the in­dus­try’s ma­jor league play­ers. They may earn top pay, but Big Phar­ma CEOs have a rep­u­ta­tion that makes the cor­ner used car sales­men look good in com­par­i­son.

Pfiz­er did man­age to scoop up a slate of new can­cer drug OKs to­ward the end of the year, but the com­pa­ny has tra­di­tion­al­ly re­lied on ac­qui­si­tions and port­fo­lio hikes to keep the num­bers tuned up for Wall Street an­a­lysts. One of those av­enues is be­ing shut down, leav­ing an­a­lysts guess­ing about what Pfiz­er will do with its big cash re­serve fire­pow­er.

Al­bert Bourla, the chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Pfiz­er, in New York City, Jan­u­ary 2019 Drew An­ger­er/Get­ty Im­ages

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The pay num­bers this year bode well for Bourla as he takes over the top spot at Pfiz­er. As COO he earned a much more mod­est $9.8 mil­lion in to­tal com­pen­sa­tion. That’s up $1 mil­lion from the year be­fore. R&D chief Michael Dol­sten, mean­while, bagged $7 mil­lion, down from $7.67 mil­lion.

The CFO Frank D’Ame­lio al­so came in for a bit of a trim, land­ing at $7.1 mil­lion, down $1.2 mil­lion from his 2017 com­pen­sa­tion. 


Fea­tured im­age: Ian Read at a pan­el dis­cus­sion in Wash­ing­ton, DC in Sep­tem­ber 2017 Bloomberg, Get­ty Im­ages

Mov­ing Out of the Clin­ic with Dig­i­tal Tools: Mo­bile Spirom­e­try Dur­ing COVID-19 & Be­yond

An important technology in assessing lung function, spirometry offers crucial data for the diagnosis and monitoring of pulmonary system diseases, as well as the ongoing measurement of treatment efficacy. But trends in the healthcare industry and new challenges introduced by the COVID-19 pandemic are causing professionals in clinical practice and research to reevaluate spirometry’s deployment methods and best practices.

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Sanofi, Glax­o­SmithK­line jump back in­to the PhI­II race for a Covid vac­cine — as the win­ners con­gre­gate be­hind the fin­ish line

Sanofi got out early in the race to develop a vaccine using more of a traditional approach, then derailed late last year as their candidate failed to work in older people. Now, after likely missing the bus for the bulk of the world’s affluent nations, they’re back from that embarrassing collapse with a second attempt using GSK’s adjuvant that may get them back on track — with a potential Q4 launch that the rest of the world will be paying close attention to.

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SCO­TUS de­clines to re­view En­brel biosim­i­lar case, tee­ing up 30+ years of ex­clu­siv­i­ty and $20B more for Am­gen’s block­buster

As the House Oversight Committee is set to grill AbbVie CEO Richard Gonzalez on Tuesday over tactics to block competition for its best-selling drug of all time, another decision on Capitol Hill on Monday opened the door for billions more in Amgen profits over the next eight years.

The Supreme Court on Monday denied Novartis subsidiary Sandoz’s petition to review a Federal Circuit’s July 2020 decision concerning its biosimilar Erelzi (etanercept-szzs), which FDA approved in 2016 as a biosimilar to Amgen’s Enbrel (etanercept). Samsung’s Enbrel biosimilar Eticovo also won approval in 2019 and remains sidelined.

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Tim Mayleben (L) and Sheldon Koenig (Esperion)

On the heels of a sting­ing Q1 set­back, Es­pe­ri­on's long­time cham­pi­on is ex­it­ing the helm and turn­ing the wheel over to a mar­ket­ing pro

Just days after getting stung by criticism from a badly disappointed group of analysts, there’s a big change happening today at the helm of Esperion $ESPR.

Longtime CEO Tim Mayleben, who championed the company for 9 years from early clinical through a lengthy late-stage drive to successfully get their cholesterol drug approved for a significant niche of patients in the US, is out of the C suite, effective immediately. Sheldon Koenig — hired at the end of 2020 with a resume replete with Big Pharma CV sales experience —  is stepping into his place, promising to right a badly listing commercial ship that’s been battered by market forces.

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How to man­u­fac­ture Covid-19 vac­cines with­out the help of J&J, Pfiz­er or Mod­er­na? Bi­ol­yse sees the dif­fi­cul­ties up close

When Biolyse, an Ontario-based manufacturer of sterile injectables, forged a deal with Bolivia last week to manufacture up to 50 million J&J Covid-19 vaccine doses, the agreement kicked off what will prove to be a test case for how difficult the system of compulsory licenses is to navigate.

The first problem: When Biolyse asked J&J, via a March letter, to license its Covid-19 vaccine, manufacture it in Canada and pay 5% royalties on shipments to needy, low-income countries, J&J rejected the offer, refusing to negotiate. J&J also did not respond to a request for comment.

No­var­tis' En­tresto takes its 2nd fail­ure of the week­end at ACC, show­ing no ben­e­fit in most dire heart fail­ure pa­tients

Novartis’ Entresto started the ACC weekend off rough with a trial flop in heart attack patients, slowing the drug’s push into earlier patients. Now, an NIH-sponsored study is casting doubt on Entresto’s use in the most severe heart failure patients, another black mark on the increasingly controversial drug’s record.

Entresto, a combination of sacubitril and valsartan, could not beat out valsartan alone in an outcomes head-to-head for severe heart failure patients with a reduced ejection fraction (HFrEF), according to data presented Monday at the virtual American College of Cardiology meeting.

Matt Gline (L) and Vivek Ramaswamy

In­sid­er ac­count of Roivan­t's SPAC deal — and that $7.3B val­u­a­tion — re­veals a few se­crets as Matt Gline po­si­tions the com­pa­ny as the new ‘Big Phar­ma’

It was Oct. 7, 2020, and Matt Gline wasn’t wasting any time.

The CEO of Roivant had word that KKR vet Jim Momtazee’s SPAC had priced late the night before, triggering a green light for anyone interested in pursuing a big check for future operations and riding the financial instrument to Nasdaq. So he wrote a quick email congratulating Momtazee, whom he knew, for the launch.

Oh, and maybe Momtazee would like to schedule something with Gline and his executive chairman, Roivant founder Vivek Ramaswamy, to chat about Roivant and its business?

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$DNA is once again on NYSE; FDA clears Soliris chal­lenger for the mar­ket; Flag­ship’s think­ing big again with eR­NA; and more

Welcome back to Endpoints Weekly, your review of the week’s top biopharma headlines. Want this in your inbox every Saturday morning? Current Endpoints readers can visit their reader profile to add Endpoints Weekly. New to Endpoints? Sign up here.

I still remember the uncertainty in the air last year when nobody was sure whether ASCO would cancel their in-person meeting. But it’s now back again for the second virtual conference, and Endpoints News is here for it. Check out our 2-day event reviewing the landscape of cancer R&D and send news our way.

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John­son & John­son do­nates Ebo­la vac­cine amid new out­break; Ji Xing promis­es more than $127M for Mile­stone's nasal spray for rapid heart rate

As Johnson & Johnson continues to roll out its Covid-19 shot, the company is also focused on another vaccine.

J&J is donating up to 200,000 doses of its Ebola vaccine regimen developed with Bavarian Nordic to help health authorities deal with a new outbreak in Sierra Leone. The regimen, Zabdeno and Mvabea, was granted prequalification by the WHO in April, which will help accelerate its registration in countries where Ebola is a threat.