PETER ROST: PHARMA MARKETING EXPERT WITNESS. AWP, MEDICAL DEVICE EXPERT.: Pfizer HR Sr VP's Private Helicopter Debacle: From CafePharma to Pharmalot

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Pfizer HR Sr VP's Private Helicopter Debacle: From CafePharma to Pharmalot

It started in May with a post on Cafe Pharma:

Is it appropriate for a member of Pfizer's Executive Leadership Team to commute to her/his job by corporate helicopter and have the company pick up the tab? Most colleagues who live in New Jersey have to take NJ Transit into New York City. What would shareholders think if they were made aware of efforts to conceal this generous benefit as Pfizer is desperately attempting to cut costs? These and other questions might make for compelling investigative journalism.

After a month of debate among Pfizer employees on Cafe Pharma about this unusual perk, the story broke on Pharmalot today:

The Pfizer Exec And The $300K Helicopter Bill

Some people drive to work. Others take a commuter train, subway or bus. There are myriad ways, after all, to travel to Pfizer’s corporate headquarters on East 42nd Street in midtown Manhattan. One exec, however, preferred helicopter rides and that expense, among others, caused a dilemma for ceo Jeff Kindler who, for a time, wanted the drugmaker to pay for such luxuries, our sources tell us.

In the midst of cutbacks that are costing thousands of Pfizer employees their jobs, Kindler late last year believed various expenses incurred by several execs were justified. One example - the weekly helicopter commute Mary McLeod, Pfizer’s senior vp of human resources, took to and from her Maryland home, sources say.

Executive travel on corporate planes is regularly charged to companies, of course. However, several members of Pfizer’s staff pointed out that not all of the expenses could be justified as wholly related to business activities and the info should be reported in the annual proxy. This left Kindler with a difficult choice - disclose such payments at a time when Pfizer is laying off employees or require the execs to reimburse the drugmaker for a portion of the expenses that couldn’t be justified.

In the end, several execs were handed bills. McLeod, for instance, was asked to reimburse Pfizer nearly $300,000 for her helicopter commutes, our sources say. A Pfizer spokesman declined to discuss specifics, but did send us this statement: “Across Pfizer, every expense is being reviewed. From the manufacturing floor to the executive suite, we are committed to leveraging every dollar.”


Anonymous Mary McClod said...

Dr. Rost, I really cannot understand what the fuss is about. Doesn't EVERYBODY have a helicopter at their beck and call to travel to work in these days? Or at least, everybody who is anybody. I don't know anyone who doesn't enjoy the benefit of such a service.

Anyone that I would want to know, anyway.

Let them eat Lipitor!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Of course, when the batteries are full, the controller will work excellently for you. You can control your RC helicopter going up and down, or turning left and right. If you are a skillful man, you can make your RC helicopters do some adventurous movements. Your audience will admire you so much and you will enjoy a happy time too. Despite the success of programs like EnterTech, the video-game industry hasn't been proactive with schools. Educational game sales make up only 7 percent of the software market for console video games, and computer titles haven't generated enough sales to be ranked, according to the Entertainment Software Association. Many commercial titles offer just drill-and-practice lessons, which some experts believe defeats the purpose of using video games.With the Super-Tac, Streamlight debuts new C4 led flashlights technology that is three time brighter than standard led lights and delivers up to 135 lumens of intense white light for up to 3.5 hours. When combined with Streamlight's proprietary deep-dish parabolic reflector optics, the Super-Tac delivers a superior long-range targeting beam, with ample peripheral illumination for navigation.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The company has not controls. I know of a woman who uses the company email to stay in contact with her married lover. The emails are graphic, yet the IT Department has yet to catch it.

Maybe she catches a ride in the helicopter as well.


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