AstraZeneca boss knighted in Queen's Birthday Honours list: 'I am truly humbled'

Sir Pascal Soriot has been knighted for services to UK life sciences and the response to Covid-19

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The boss of pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca has said he is “truly humbled” to be given a knighthood.

Sir Pascal Soriot, AstraZeneca’s chief executive officer, has been knighted for services to UK life sciences and the response to Covid-19.

The Oxford/AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine was approved in December 2020, and jabs were initially rolled out among the older and the most vulnerable in society.

Sir Pascal Soriot
Sir Pascal Soriot
The AstraZeneca boss has been knighted for services to UK life sciences and the response to Covid-19
The AstraZeneca boss has been knighted for services to UK life sciences and the response to Covid-19

Sir Pascal said: “I am truly humbled by this recognition. Growing up in France, I had many dreams and hopes for the future, but I never thought I would receive a knighthood from Her Majesty the Queen.

“As an Australian citizen, it is a great privilege to receive this award and an honour to work with so many outstanding people around the world dedicated to following the science in order to bring medicines to patients.

“This recognition is also theirs and I would like to thank each of them for their commitment to our mission.

“I am also grateful to my family for their support in enabling me to pursue a career doing what I love.”

Sir Pascal, who has been chief executive at AstraZeneca since 2012, served as chief operating officer of Roche’s pharmaceuticals division from 2010 to September 2012, and before that he was chief executive officer of Genentech, a biologics business, where he led its merger with Roche.

According to the AstraZeneca website, Sir Pascal joined the pharmaceutical industry in 1986 and has worked in senior management roles in numerous major companies around the world.

He is a doctor of veterinary medicine.