Novo Nordisk’s CEO, Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, Clinches Financial Times’ Person of the Year Award

In a surprising turn of events, Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, the Chief Executive Officer of Novo Nordisk, has been honored as the Person of the Year by the prestigious Financial Times. The accolade, a tradition dating back to 1970, recognizes individuals who have made a significant impact on the world, and Jørgensen joins the ranks of luminaries such as Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Barack Obama, Angela Merkel, Jack Ma, and Donald Trump.

Novo Nordisk's CEO, Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen, Clinches Financial Times' Person of the Year Award 1

The Financial Times bestowed this honor upon Jørgensen primarily in acknowledgment of Novo Nordisk’s groundbreaking weight loss product, Wegovy. According to the renowned British financial media, Wegovy has had a “profound impact not just on healthcare, but on societies, on public finances, and on our relationship with food.”

The subtle and understated leadership style of Fruergaard Jørgensen, as described by the British newspaper, sets him apart from typical CEOs. Despite his unassuming demeanor, he is spearheading a commercial innovation with far-reaching consequences for healthcare, societies, public finances, and our attitudes toward food.

Speaking to the Financial Times, Fruergaard Jørgensen expressed a “great sense of responsibility for actually succeeding together with society.” In a written comment to Ritzau, he emphasized that the award is a recognition of Novo Nordisk as a company, its history, and the dedication of its employees over the past 100 years.

Novo Nordisk, a company dedicated to combating diabetes and chronic diseases, achieved a significant milestone with the approval and subsequent launch of Wegovy in the US in 2021, followed by its introduction to Denmark in December 2022. Wegovy, an offshoot of Novo Nordisk’s Ozempic, has proven to be a game-changer, providing a non-invasive alternative to the previously dominant bariatric surgery for weight loss.

Ozempic, originally introduced as a diabetes medicine in 2018, unexpectedly revealed a weight loss side effect, marking a pivotal moment in Novo Nordisk’s journey. The Financial Times notes, “Before these drugs, the only truly effective treatment was bariatric surgery, which is expensive and sometimes risky. Now there is a simple injection.”

The financial success of Novo Nordisk is underscored by the company’s impressive revenue of DKK 166 billion for the first nine months of the year, representing a remarkable 29% increase compared to the same period the previous year. As of now, Novo Nordisk holds the distinction of being the company in Europe with the highest market capitalization.

Fruergaard Jørgensen’s association with Novo Nordisk dates back to 1991, and since 2017, he has served as the CEO. His commitment to making a difference for patients, coupled with Novo Nordisk’s pioneering advancements, has undoubtedly earned him the well-deserved recognition as the Financial Times’ Person of the Year.

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