Soriot notches a bigger bonus, but total $5.5M in pay is no record breaker

AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot

AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot scored a big increase in bonus for 2013, but his total not only falls short of last year's, but pales by comparison with the biggest in Big Pharma. And his predecessor David Brennan's pay beats the total, too.

As its April annual meeting approaches, AstraZeneca ($AZN) filed disclosures with the Securities and Exchange Commission, which show Soriot's 2013 total remuneration at £3.34 million, or about $5.5 million. That includes a £1.87 million bonus and £1.1 million in salary, both considerable increases over 2012, when he served a partial year.

But the total falls short of 2012's £3.69 million, which included a signing bonus of almost £3 million, meant to make up for awards he lost when leaving Roche.

It also falls short of Brennan's compensation packages. According to AZ's previous annual reports, Brennan earned £3.37 million in 2011, his last full year on the job. That wasn't enough to qualify him for a spot on FiercePharma's list of highest-paid CEOs (though he did win the honor in 2008 and 2009).

For Soriot to hit the top-20 list last year, he would have had to match or beat Sanofi ($SNY) CEO Christopher Viehbacher's $9.627 million, in 20th place. The highest paid CEO in biopharma for 2012 was Regeneron ($REGN) chief Leonard Schliefer at about $30 million.

AstraZeneca's compensation committee cited Soriot's dealmaking activity as one reason for awarding him the £1.87 million bonus, which is 94% of the maximum he could have earned, in a year when the company's profits and sales both declined.

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Special Report: 20 Highest-paid biopharma CEOs of 2012