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Tumultuous times at Teva continue, with Chairman exit

Published on 13/12/17 at 09:11am

In the latest addition to a number of high profile exits from Teva, previous interim Chief Executive and the company’s chairman, Yitzhak Peterburg, has resigned from the company with immediate effect.

Peterburg joins Michael Hayden, CSO, Rob Koremans, CEO of specialty drugs, and Dipankar Bhattacharjee, CEO of its generics business, in leaving the business since Kare Shultz joined as its CEO.

Peterburg was Chairman during the ill-fated takeover of Actavis for $40 billion – a decision that lies behind many of Teva’s current troubles, as it struggles to finance the enormous debt burden amid weakened generics sales.

As reported by Globes, Teva announced on the departure of its Chairman: Teva said, “Yitzhak Peterburg, a member of Teva's board of directors and the former acting CEO has announced he is stepping down with immediate effect. Yitzhak Peterburg's decision to leave is for personal reasons only and not related to any dispute with the company. The company thanks Peterburg for his dedicated years of service and wishes him every success in his future endeavours.”

Peterburg had been with the company from 2010, acting as Chairman under five different CEOs in this period – a huge turnover when stability in the position within the pharma industry is usually called for, this period even included him taking up the position as interim CEO from February to September of this year.

Alongside the news that Peterburg was departing came a separate report that the company would be unveiling plans on Thursday to announce the manner in which it would restructure its business, according to the Calcalist. An announcement of such a kind was widely expected after the rumour mill went into overdrive regarding job cuts at the company.

The latest speculation suggests that an R&D facility in Israel will be sold off, alongside a logistics centre, which would result in several thousand job positions being lost.

It has also been revealed that Teva is currently evaluating its options when it comes to managing its significant debt mountain, which includes assessing whether the deadlines for loan repayments can be extended.

Ben Hargreaves

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