A Medical Device Daily

Biopure (Cambridge, Massachusetts) said that it is exploring strategic options for financing or alternative transactions. The company has engaged Newbury Piret & Co. to advise on options, including evaluation of nonbinding proposals that have been received. There should be no assumption that this process will result in any transaction or any particular type of transaction.

On Feb. 13, Biopure filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission its annual report on Form 10-K, which contains the company's financial statements for the two years ended Oct. 31, 2008. The company does not intend to issue a separate earnings release. The report of the company's independent registered public accounting firm contained in this filing is modified with respect to the company's ability to continue as a going concern.

Biopure makes pharmaceuticals, called oxygen therapeutics, that are intravenously administered to deliver oxygen to the body's tissues. In November, the company announced that it had terminated most of its work force for financial reasons.

Using its limited resources, the company is supporting the U.S. Navy's government-funded efforts to develop a potential out-of-hospital trauma indication.

In a noteworthy move in the face of mounting criticism over executive pay, General Electric (Fairfield, Connecticut) Chairman/CEO Jeffrey Immelt has declined a 2008 bonus and millions of dollars in performance awards, saying that the company's falling profits and sharply declining share price prompted him to forgo the payments.

The Associated Press and other news sources said that GE, which makes everything from locomotives to medical devices, said in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that Immelt will not receive his $11.7 million long-term performance award. Immelt received no bonus and his base salary of $3.3 million was flat with his 2007 paycheck. In 2007, GE paid Immelt, a former president of the company's GE Healthcare (Waukesha, Wisconsin) unit, a $5.8 million bonus.

The AP said the pay decisions, which the board made at Immelt's request, come after painful year for GE as the economy sank into a deeper recession and the financial crisis intensified. Earnings dropped 22%, company profit targets were missed, a restructuring of the GE's lending unit began, and shares lost more than half their value.

"Earnings came in well below where we expected. The broad equity markets, and GE's stock price, declined significantly in 2008. In these circumstances, I recommended to GE's board of directors that I not receive a bonus for 2008," Immelt said in a statement.

Although GE struggled last year, the company said 2008 was still its third-best earnings year in history.

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