A 300% Surge Makes Tilray’s CEO No. 2 In Pay Ranking After Elon Musk

Brendan Kennedy’s $256 million compensation trails only Elon Musk

Brendan Kennedy knew early on that his bet on marijuana would take years to pay off—if at all.

It’s “either career suicide or it’s the smartest decision we’ve ever made in our lives—and we won’t know for three to five years,” Kennedy told Bloomberg in 2012.

The windfall didn’t arrive for six years, but close enough. In July, Tilray Inc. became the first cannabis company to list its shares on a U.S. exchange and rode a wave of investor hype to end 2018 with a 315% gain. That made Kennedy, its 47-year-old CEO, the second-highest-paid executive in 2018 among companies traded on U.S. exchanges, according to the Bloomberg Pay Index. His $256 million compensation package trails only the $513.3 million Tesla Inc. awarded to Elon Musk.

Bob Iger of Walt Disney Co. placed third in the pay ranking. He’s followed by Apple Inc.’s Tim Cook and Nikesh Arora, the former SoftBank Group Corp. executive who took over as CEO of Palo Alto Networks Inc. last year.

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