That was fast. Just a month after mRNA giant Moderna unveiled a CFO switch, its new finance chief is out the door because his former employer disclosed an internal accounting probe.
Moderna’s CFO Jorge Gomez, who joined the drugmaker in mid-April, is leaving effective immediately, the company said in a Wednesday Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing. His departure comes after his former employer, Dentsply Sirona, said it couldn’t file its first-quarter 2022 financial report because of an internal accounting probe.
Gomez will get a $700,000 salary for his monthlong stay at Moderna, but he’ll lose his signing bonus, relocation reimbursement and any potential equity awards.
With Gomez’s departure, Moderna is bringing David Meline back into the fold starting Wednesday. Meline joined Moderna as CFO in June 2020 and recently retired, but he’s back to steer the company’s finances for the foreseeable future. He’ll be eligible for a $700,000 salary, plus annual incentives and eligibility for stock and option awards. Before Moderna, he was Amgen’s CFO from 2014 to 2019.
In an SEC filing, Dentsply Sirona, a manufacturer of dental office supplies, said it couldn’t file its first-quarter 2022 report, because its audit and finance committee had started a probe of incentives the company used to sell products to distributors in the second half of 2021. Dentsply Sirona is also investigating whether the company’s management directed employees to use the incentives to meet its own executive compensation targets in 2021.
The company hired outside assistance to run the investigation, and a forensic accounting team is involved.
As for Moderna, the CFO reversal marks a rare setback for the company, which has been on a winning streak lately. After scoring an FDA emergency use authorization for its COVID-19 vaccine back in late 2020, the company reaped billions in global sales. For 2022, the company signed orders worth $21 billion.
Along the way, Moderna has grown from 830 employees at the end of 2019 to 2,700 at the end of 2021.