Moderna & Pfizer CFOs Both Stepped Down Days Apart

With record-high profits and talks of more boosters, it seems peculiar that high executives from Moderna and Pfizer would step away from their positions.

However, the CFOs of both pharmaceutical giants stepped down around the same time earlier this month.

Moderna CFO David Meline will cash out $42 million richer, according to Fierce Pharma.

That’s the current value of his 270,000 stock options—awarded upon his hire in July 2020—which will be fully vested by July 2024. The disclosure came (PDF) in an SEC filing on Monday and Moderna’s 2022 proxy (PDF) statement.

On Monday, Moderna revealed that Meline was stepping down and will be replaced by Jorge Gomez, who leaves his post as CFO at Dentsply Sirona. Gomez, 54, previously served as the finance chief at Cardinal Health.

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Gomez will receive a base salary of $700,000, compared with $621,000 for Meline last year. He also receives a $4 million new-hire stock package and annual awards between $3 million and $4 million.

Gomez will take his post at Moderna on May 7. After that, Meline remains on as a consultant until July 2024.

“As we grow and scale the company globally, Jorge’s experience leading the financial functions of multinational healthcare companies will be an asset to our team,” Moderna CEO Stephane Bancel said in a release.

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Moderna’s revelation, oddly enough, came the same day Pfizer announced the retirement of its 15-year finance chief Frank D’Amelio. Pfizer is replacing D’Amelio with David Denton, who as CFO at CVS helped orchestrate the company’s transformative acquisition of health insurance giant Aetna.

Is there a reason why they’re cashing out now?

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