Amgen has been battling a storm of generics and biosimilars—and last year posted a sales decline. But it still awarded its chief executive a total pay increase of more than $1 million.
Why? Advances elsewhere, the company's proxy says.
CEO Robert Bradway scored a $19.6 million total pay package in 2019, up about 6% from $18.56 million in 2019. That follows a 10% raise the year before.
Bradway's base salary grew slightly to $1.6 million last year, while stock and option awards jumped by about $1.5 million. His cash incentive pay, however, fell by more than $550,000.
In the "other" compensation category, Bradway's tally increased by about $100,000. The CEO recorded more than $100,000 in personal use of corporate aircraft, the company's new proxy filing shows.
In all last year, Amgen says it “advanced key facets of our long-term growth strategy in a year of transition.” Like others, the drugmaker is working to build around drugs that can deliver sales increases through volume growth—rather than price hikes. Among the meds it’s focusing on are PCSK9 cholesterol drug Repatha, migraine prevention therapy Aimovig and newly acquired immunology blockbuster Otezla.
Amgen picked up Otezla near the end of 2019 from Celgene as that drugmaker sold itself to Bristol Myers Squibb. The drug generated $178 million by the end of 2019 for Amgen, and execs believe there's plenty of opportunity of growth through new indications and new launches.
Meanwhile, Amgen is further advancing its biosims portfolio and has launched two copycats to Roche cancer megablockbusters. The company's biosimilars pulled in $353 million last year.
After that progress in 2019, Amgen believes it's “increasingly well-positioned to take advantage of the growing demand for innovative healthcare globally” and is expanding its “presence in markets around the world,” including China and Japan.
But things weren’t all sunny at the drugmaker last year. As many other companies recorded increases in sales, Amgen posted a revenue sales decline due to copycat competition to Neulasta, Neupogen, Epogen and Sensipar. In all, Amgen’s sales slipped 2% last year, but the company has said it expects growth will return in 2020.