Richard Gonzalez will retire as CEO of AbbVie after leading the company since its spin-out from Abbott in 2013. Welcome to BioProcess Insider’s recruitment roundup.

Shreeyashi Ojha, Reporter

February 29, 2024

2 Min Read
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Gonzalez, 70, who will become the executive chairman of the board of directors, effective July 1, 2024, has served AbbVie since its demerger from Abbott in 2013.

He has previously served as the president and chief operating officer (COO) of Abbott, and reportedly led the demerger, after which Gonzalez took the reins ushering in a decade of unsurmountable profits. 

Backed by AbbVie’s rheumatoid arthritis drug Humira (adalimumab), the company grew from $54 billion in 2013 to $300 billion in 2023. Humira, which was the world's biggest-selling medicine as recently as 2022, generated sales of about $22 billion last year. 

“All of us at AbbVie owe Rick an enormous debt of gratitude for his remarkable leadership over the past 11 years,” said Glenn Tilton, lead independent director, AbbVie's board of directors.  

“Under his stewardship, AbbVie has generated a total return to shareholders of more than 700%, created over $250 billion in market valuation, grown our annual patient base to more than 60 million people in 175 countries, invested over $60 billion in R&D and nearly tripled annual revenue. We are thrilled that we will continue to benefit from Rick's experience, intellect and integrity on AbbVie's board of directors.” 

will be Robert Michael, who was unanimously elected by the board to assume the firm’s leadership. The appointment will come into effect on July 1, 2024. 

With 30+ years of experience, Michael led AbbVie’s first financial planning organization as its vice president, AbbVie financial planning and analysis, at the time of its demerger from Abbott in 2013.  

Additionally, Michael has held several top positions at AbbVie. He was the chief financial officer in 2018, vice chairman, finance and commercial operations in 2021, vice chairman and president in 2022, and president and chief operating officer in 2023. 

Furthermore, he is also a member of AbbVie's executive leadership team, and oversees global commercial operations, finance, corporate human resources, global operations, business development and corporate strategy for the company. 

“I am honored to assume the CEO role for AbbVie, and I am excited about our company's bright future,” said Michael.  

“Rick has been a tremendous leader for AbbVie and mentor to me personally. His legacy at AbbVie will be felt for years to come. I would like to thank the board for expressing its confidence in me, and I look forward to working with Rick and the entire board to deliver results for our patients, our employees, our shareholders and our communities.” 

About the Author(s)

Shreeyashi Ojha

Reporter, BioProcess Insider

Journalist covering the manufacturing and processing sectors for biopharmaceuticals globally.  

Originally from India, I am a Londoner at heart. I have recently graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London.  

Feel free to reach out to me at: [email protected].

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