Chairman and CEO, Baxter International
Total Compensation: $16.162 million
Professional Profile: Robert Parkinson has been CEO of Baxter ($BAX) for the last decade, but he had already completed a long career at Abbott Laboratories ($ABT) before his current gig. He retired as president and chief operating officer in 2001 after 25 years at Abbott. He got a bit of a break in between, spending a couple of years as dean of the business school at his alma mater, Loyola University Chicago, before getting the call from Baxter. His compensation in 2013 was only slightly less than the $17.521 million he received the preceding year.
Company Profile: The exclamation point for Parkinson last year has to be closing the $3.9 billion deal to buy competitor Gambro, an acquisition that Parkinson says will make the device and drug company the undisputed worldwide leader in dialysis. But in retrospect, many of the decisions he made at Baxter in 2013 now appear to have been chess moves ahead of the recent announcement that, in 2015, the company will split into two units, devices and pharma, and pharma will be spun off.
To that end, Parkinson has not only beefed up Baxter's device business with Gambro, but also made moves to bolster its drug pipeline with deals for some early-stage cancer candidates. The company has also invested in pharma manufacturing, including expanding a plant that has cytotoxic manufacturing capabilities needed for targeted cancer drugs.
Baxter was also dragged into the big China probe debate when it acknowledged that employees at a joint venture there fabricated conferences as part of a bribery scheme. The problems actually occurred in 2012, but only became public last year when the probe that swept up GlaxoSmithKline ($GSK) and others received a lot of attention.
None of this kept the company from achieving 8% growth in sales last year. -- Eric Palmer (email | Twitter)
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