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Biotech CEO’s pay

Top managers in the biggest biotechnology companies collected bonuses in 2003 52% higher than the year before, resulting in their paycheck increasing by 11%, according to a report published on October 26 by BioWorld magazine.

The report—based on proxy data from over 200 of the largest publicly traded biotech companies in the US—cites the median total cash compensation for CEOs at those companies reached $492,000, up from $445,000 the year before. The increase was bigger than in other sectors. Mercer, a human resource consulting company based in New York City, found a 7% increase in total cash compensation of their CEOs. In addition, the median base salary for CEO’s in those companies went up 4%, whereas base salaries in biotech companies rose a modest 1%. Top managers dedicated to R&D were not as fortunate as their bosses, however. Median cash renumeration for chief R&D officers rose 3%, thanks to bigger bonuses compensating for a 4% drop in base salaries. The CEOs of Amgen, Genzyme, Celera, Genentech, Celgene, Cephalon, and Gilead received a paycheck of $1.5 million or more. Kevin Sharer, CEO of Amgen, received the biggest cash payments, worth $3.6 million. If non-cash compensation such as stock is included, Genentech CEO Arthur Levinson took home $23.2 million, the top compensation.

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