Bob Herman Mar 27
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Gilead execs cash in on hepatitis C drug boom

Former Gilead CEO and current Chairman John Martin (Paul Sakuma / AP)

Gilead's top executives continue to reap the benefits of the blockbuster hepatitis C drugs it acquired several years ago. In 2016, according to proxy documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday, Gilead paid:

  • John Martin: $98.4 million
  • John Milligan: $57.8 million

Those figures represent the actual value of stock vested in 2016, not estimated fair value.

Milligan took over as CEO in March 2016, replacing Martin, who now serves as executive chairman. Martin has taken home $523 million since 2014, when Gilead started selling both of its hepatitis C drugs, Sovaldi and Harvoni. A vast majority of Martin's pay has come in the form of cashed-in stock.

Why this matters: Gilead's executive pay fans the flames of the U.S. drug pricing debate. Consumers and lawmakers have lambasted the company, arguing the high drug prices are unjustified and lock people out of medicine that cures hepatitis C. The list prices are $84,000 for Sovaldi and $94,500 for Harvoni, or more than $1,000 per pill for the usual 12-week treatment, but after discounts and rebates the price is a little more than half that.

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Facebook reaches a tipping point

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios 

Of all the news crises Facebook has faced during the past year, the Cambridge Analytica scandal is playing out to be the worst and most damaging.

Why it matters: It's not that the reports reveal anything particularly new about how Facebook's back end works — developers have understood the vulnerabilities of Facebook's interface for years. But stakeholders crucial to the company's success — as well as the public seem less willing to listen to its side of the story this time around.

Steve LeVine 15 hours ago
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Self-driving lab head urges freeze after "nightmare" fatality

Uber self-driving car in Pittsburgh. Photo: Jeff Swensen / Getty

Carmakers and technology companies should freeze their race to field autonomous vehicles because "clearly the technology is not where it needs to be," said Raj Rajkumar, head of Carnegie Mellon University's leading self-driving laboratory.

What he said: Speaking a few hours after a self-driven vehicle ran over and killed a pedestrian in Arizona, Rajkumar said, "This isn't like a bug with your phone. People can get killed. Companies need to take a deep breath. The technology is not there yet. We need to keep people in the loop."