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Novartis chairman drops $78 million parachute deal

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[February 19, 2013]  GENEVA (AP) -- The outgoing chairman of Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG has agreed to cancel a much-criticized deal under which he stood to earn up to 72 million francs ($78 million) for not advising competitors over the coming years.

Daniel Vasella, the company's longtime chairman and former chief executive, is to step down at its annual general meeting on Feb. 22.

News of the "non-compete deal," under which Vasella would have earned up to 12 million francs a year for six years, emerged last week and met with widespread criticism in Switzerland.

The company says the chairman had agreed to donate the money to "philanthropic activities" but Vasella said Tuesday he "understood that many people in Switzerland find the amount of the compensation linked to the non-compete agreement unreasonably high."

[Associated Press]

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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