Pfizer’s new CFO is a former CVS Health finance chief—and will oversee more than numbers

David M. Denton was named the next CFO and EVP at Pfizer, effective May 2.

Prior to joining Lowe’s in 2018 as CFO, Denton served as CFO and EVP at CVS Health. He helped guide the transformation of CVS from a retail pharmacy to a health solutions provider and led the full integration of Caremark into CVS, according to Pfizer. Denton also negotiated the terms and financing for CVS’s acquisition of Aetna in December 2017. The $70 billion deal closed in November 2018. (You can read the full story on the transformation of CVS here.)

David M. Denton, named CFO at Pfizer / Courtesy of Pfizer

Denton succeeds Frank D’Amelio, CFO and EVP, who is retiring and has agreed to remain in place through a transition period, Pfizer announced on Monday. D’Amelio joined Pfizer in 2007, and during his tenure as CFO, the company “generated close to $150 billion in market cap growth,” Pfizer said in November. He led several acquisitions and partnerships valued at nearly $200 billion, such as the acquisition of Wyeth. D’Amelio also oversaw Pfizer’s manufacturing network.

Denton is expected to emulate the strategic partnership between D’Amelio and Albert Bourla, chairman and CEO at Pfizer, that propelled the company during the COVID-19 crisis. Denton will be “a key thought partner to the company’s CEO and executive leadership team,” Pfizer said in the announcement. 

“Dave brings with him deep financial experience, a track record of achievement, and true insights into today’s health care system,” Bourla said in a statement. “For these reasons, he is the perfect leader to take the helm of our talented finance organization and deliver a comprehensive strategic financial vision that will help drive Pfizer’s future growth and success.”

Being a “key thought partner” and spearheading “strategic financial vision” have become the focus of the CFO role over the years. “Making sure your company is transforming, the strategy of the company is in the right direction, making sure talent is aligned with the right business priorities—I think those are the areas where the scope of the role is increasing,” Ankur Agrawal, a partner at McKinsey & Co., recently told Fortune.  

“For me, there could be no professional opportunity greater than leveraging all my years of finance and business experience to play a role in helping deliver on this aspiration, working alongside a high-performing team that has been built for growth and enhancing shareholder returns,” Denton said in a statement.

Pfizer’s COVID vaccine has helped drive record revenues for the drugmaker. In 2021, Pfizer recorded almost $37 billion in revenue from COVID vaccine sales (out of a total of $81.3 billion), Fortune reported. And this year, Pfizer expects to sell an additional $32 billion in COVID vaccines and anticipates $22 billion in sales from its COVID pill, Paxlovid.

As the BA.2 subvariant of Omicron becomes the dominant form of COVID in America, the Food and Drug Administration approved a second booster of the BioNTech-Pfizer vaccine in March. 

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