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Biotech Executive Salaries Continue to Rise Despite Weak Economy

ATLANTA, Sept. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Amgen CEO Kevin Sharer, at $1.75 million in his final year before retirement, led the list of highest-salaried biotechnology executives in 2011, followed by John Martin, Gilead Sciences CEO, with $1.42 million, although Martin topped all executives in total compensation, with $54.58 million, to lead the "Millionaire's Club," according to data in the BioWorld Executive Compensation Report 2013: Trends in C-Level Salaries and Benefits in the Biopharma Market (ECR). 


Rounding out the top of the list of the highest-salaried U.S. biotech executives is George Scangos, Biogen Idec CEO, at $1.24 million, followed by Matthew Emmens, Vertex Pharmaceuticals, with $1.16 million.

It's still predominately a men's club, but women made noteworthy progress on some of the lists. Adelene Perkins, Infinity Pharmaceuticals CEO, at $820,000, came in at number 53 on the list of the top 167 CEOs, ranked by total annual compensation, to head a list of five female CEOs making the roll.

"In recent years, the biotech market has attained overall profitability, achieved its highest-ever market value and increased the number of annual product approvals; these are the executive decision-makers guiding the industry through the most profitable and productive period in its history, but also in what is, arguably, its most tenuous economic period," said Michael Harris, BioWorld's ECR senior editor.

Data on biotech corporate officers at companies outside the U.S. was included for the first time in ECR 2013 and the list shows only one executive, Peer Schatz, Qiagen CEO, at $1.31 million, earning more than $1 million.

"Negotiations for executive compensation packages can be better managed when there is comparative data on competitive-level positions," Harris said. "The compensation trends in BioWorld's ECR reveal that dynamics such as the recession, inherent volatility associated with drugmaking and the overwhelming risk of failure seem to have invoked the companies to double down on their efforts to rely on – and pay for – the best leadership."

Data in the 2013 ECR covers 798 C-level executives representing 258 companies in the U.S., with additional sections covering 87 executives representing 55 non-U.S. companies in Europe and Canada.

BioWorld is the biopharmaceutical industry's most respected news source for more than two decades. For a copy of the ECR, call (800) 477-6307 or, outside the U.S., (404) 262-5476 or visit

CONTACT: Lynn Yoffee, Executive Editor, +1-404-262-5408

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