Sector News

Regeneron chief nabs $42M, but he’ll have to pay his own club fees this year

March 23, 2015
Life sciences
Regeneron chief Len Schleifer has topped the ranks of biopharma’s highest-paid skippers for the past couple of years now, and though his salary may be rising still, being CEO doesn’t quite come with all the perks it used to.
 
According to the company’s recent proxy filing, Regeneron’s compensation committee nixed Schleifer’s automobile allowance, as well as his club membership dues and annual credit card membership fees. And money he got to pay taxes on legal, tax and financial planning advisers? That’s gone too.
 
Don’t worry about Schleifer, though. He’ll still get plenty of benefits, including life insurance, long-term disability, and medical malpractice insurance, Regeneron’s proxy says–and that’s all on top of his salary, bonus and option awards.
 
Speaking of that combo, it reached $41.86 million last year without the added perks, putting Schleifer’s total 2014 compensation at $41.97 million. That haul built on the $36.27 million paycheck he nabbed in 2013 and the $30.05 million he netted in 2012, both of which topped the industry’s “highest-paid” CEO lists in their respective years.
 
Schleifer has hard-charging eye drug Eylea to thank for those hefty sums–and for Regeneron’s recent success. The med stormed out of the gate after hitting the U.S. market back in late 2011, and since then, it’s trounced forecast after forecast and racked up a host of indications on both sides of the pond. Plus, the company has a PCSK9 cholesterol drug, alirocumab, waiting for FDA approval. Analysts figure Regeneron and partner Sanofi can pump that med to blockbuster sales, too.
 
And for that, he’s not the only Regeneron exec raking in the big bucks. The company’s R&D chief, George Yancopoulos, famously scored a record-setting $81 million pay package back in 2012 after developing Eylea–and while that package shrank last year, he still took home $31 million to lead the R&D executive pay field.
 
Like Schleifer, though, Yancopoulos is kissing some of his freebies goodbye this year; his automobile allowance is gone, too, and the credit card membership fees will now be his to pay.
 
By Carly Helfand
 

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