The Courier-Mail

Big payoff for ImpediMed CEO

- LIAM WALSH

THE head of a loss-making medical device company founded in Brisbane is now getting paid more than the boss of the Supercheap Auto chain. The catch? He’s helped lead a big payday for investors.

ImpediMed’s chief executive officer Richard Carreon’s remunerati­on hit $1.68 million this year, up from $1 million. That’s more than the $1.49 million for Peter Birtles of Super Retail Group.

A big difference is a major chunk, almost $719,000 worth, of Mr Carreon’s pay was based on potential long-term bonus shares that still need to clear hurdles, or stock options that only become usable gradually.

ImpediMed, based out of Brisbane and California’s Carlsbad, notched up a deeper $14.8 million loss in the latest profit reporting season. The company has a device, L-Dex, which detects a swelling ailment linked to cancer.

After years of setbacks on its initial listing in 2007, ImpediMed has changed management and recently started receiving positive news. Investors ben- efited, with the stock rising from 19 to 87 in the year.

Morgans analyst Scott Power said key achievemen­ts for ImpediMed have included obtaining a key category coding for the device, which helps in health insurance reimburse- ment. Another was getting six top cancer centres signed up to participat­e in a pilot program.

But investor risks remain, Mr Power warned, including the take up of ImpediMed’s technology being at slower rates than anticipate­d.

ImpediMed’s loss was deeper than expected, thanks to higher than anticipate­d sharebased payments and wages. Salaries lifted from $5.1 million to $9.5 million, with staff numbers rising from 30 to 43.

ImpediMed also cited higher “sales and marketing resources” as it prepares for a full commercial launch and Mr Power said this launch, expected in the last quarter of this calendar year, was a key event.

Revenues rose from $3.6 million to $4.9 million.

ImpediMed’s shares have pulled back after hitting an alltime high of $1.24 in August, closing at 99.5 on Friday.

 ??  ?? EARNER: Rick Carreon with ImpediMed’s L-Dex device.
EARNER: Rick Carreon with ImpediMed’s L-Dex device.

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