AstraZeneca's £4.4m package for former boss

AstraZeneca paid its departing chief executive David Brennan up to £4.4m, on top of his pension pot totalling £14m, it emerged yesterday.

However, Mr Brennan, pictured, who quit after growing pressure from shareholders, waived his bonus for the first five months of 2012 following his sudden departure after poor sales and setbacks with AstraZeneca's pipeline of new drugs.

The company released figures in its annual report showing that Mr Brennan was paid a lump sum of £914,122 as part of his notice period, plus a share award of £1.5m for 2010 and potentially another £2m depending on the performance of previous share awards.

The report said his £14m pension pot, which was accrued over his 36 years at the company, would pay him about £970,000 a year.

Mr Brennan has said that the decision to leave the company in April had been made "totally" by himself. However, shareholders had pushed for his departure in what was a key moment of the so-called "shareholder spring".