Beset by recalls, J&J cuts CEO’s bonus 45%

By Reuters
Posted Feb. 25 at 1:32 p.m.

Johnson & Johnson cut the 2010 performance bonus of its chief executive, William Weldon, by 45 percent, from 2009 levels to $1.98 million, according to a regulatory filing.

The CEO’s diminished bonus comes after a year in which the company faced repeated recalls of consumer health products, medical devices and other products that hit its bottom line.

J&J has recalled more than 250 million bottles of widely used consumer products, such as various forms of Tylenol, Rolaids, Benadryl and Mylanta, for a host of manufacturing and quality control problems.

Weldon has said the company hopes to have all affected products back on pharmacy and supermarket shelves by the end of this year after inspecting tis plants for quality. He expressed disappointment in a recent television interview that it was taking longer than anticipated to make some of the recalled children’s products available to consumers.

Weldon’s 2010 bonus will be paid 85 percent in cash and 15 percent in J&J stock, according to the filing, which also said the J&J board approved a 2011 base salary of $1.9 million for is CEO and chairman.

“The board’s compensation & benefits committee evaluates Mr. Weldon and all the executive officers against a set of both financial and strategic objectives,” the company said in a statement.

“These objectives and the committee’s assessments will be discussed in the company’s upcoming Proxy statement, and are consistent with our long-standing pay-for-performance philosophy,” it said.

The proxy statement will be available in mid-March.

Johnson & Johnson shares were off 8 cents, at $59.63, in afternoon trade on the New York Stock Exchange.

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