2. Kåre Schultz, Teva

Kåre Schultz
Despite last year only being Teva CEO Kåre Schultz's first full year on the job, his pay ranked near the top in all of biopharma. (News Oresund/CC BY 2.0)

2. Kåre Schultz, Teva
2018 pay: $32.47 million
2017 pay: $17.03 million
Change: 91%

2018 may have only been Teva CEO Kåre Schultz’s first full year on the job, but that didn’t stop the company from awarding him a compensation package that placed him in the top ranks of pharma’s highest-paid.

The Israeli drugmaker handed Schultz a cool $32.5 million—nearly double what it paid him in 2017, and five times what it paid predecessor Erez Vigodman in 2016.

So what made the difference this time around? A signing bonus, and a big one at that. Teva forked over $20 million to Schultz after he agreed to take the job—one that wouldn’t have looked nearly as appealing without the extra incentive.

RELATED: Teva lures Lundbeck chief Schultz with $52M package that makes him among pharma's top paid

After all, Teva at the time was in a world of hurt, drowning in debt after a mammoth, ill-advised purchase of Allergan’s generics unit and feeling the burn as generics prices plummeted. Reports listed AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot among candidates who had already turned the job down.

Teva, though, was determined to bring in a “world class” chief executive, as Chairman Sol Barer, Ph.D., promised repeatedly throughout 2017. And the way Teva sees it, that $20 million payment helped it do just that.

Along with the $20 million in cash, Schultz’s 2018 pay also came with a $2 million salary—up from $333,333 in 2017, his first partial year in the CEO’s chair—$5.5 million in stock awards, and $3.79 million in cash incentive pay.

RELATED: Teva, amid massive restructuring, closes in on $3B cost-cutting goal

In addition to a well-paid year, 2018 was also a busy one for Schultz. He got right to work following through on the $3 billion cost-cutting drive he laid out late in 2017. As of early May, about 10,000 employees had already lost their jobs, and Teva had cut about $2.5 billion in costs.

2. Kåre Schultz, Teva

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