Kare Schultz Named CEO of Teva

  • (c) News Øresund, Malmö, Sweden(c) News Øresund, Malmö, Sweden

After a protracted search, Israeli generics giant Teva has appointed a new president and chief executive officer. Kåre Schultz will take over from interim CEO Yitzhak Peterburg at an as yet unannounced time. Peterburg stepped into the job in February after the sudden resignation of Erez Vigodman for undisclosed reasons.

Teva said the 56-year-old new company chief-in-waiting, who holds a master’s degree in economics from the University of Copenhagen, was found with the help of the perhaps aptly named headhunting firm Heidrick & Struggles.

The drugmaker describes Schultz, a Danish national, as a “seasoned veteran in the healthcare industry with a distinguished, nearly 30-year career in global pharmaceutical and healthcare companies.” The executive, it remarked, “has developed a unique perspective overseeing generic and specialty drug portfolios, while managing complex business operations around the world.”

Schultz most recently served as president and CEO of H. Lundbeck in Denmark, where he is credited with leading significant restructuring initiatives and launching a robust turnaround strategy. As a result of his leadership, Teva said, Lundbeck is on track to achieve all-time high revenue and earnings. 

Prior to his stint at Lundbeck, Schultz served as chief operating officer of Novo Nordisk, where he is said to have played a key role in turning the insulin manufacturer into one of the world’s best-performing drugmakers and implementing a metrics-focused approach to the company’s operations.

In an interview with the newspaper Wall Street Journal, Teva’s chairman Sol Barer, said the new CEO would review the company’s operations and communicate a new strategy “as soon as possible.”

Peterburg commented that Teva is “delivering on the commitments” it has made in recent months, optimizing its operations and geographical footprint while focusing its resources on the specialty and generics pipeline assets that offer the most attractive return on investment.

The generics producer is also on course to meet its target of generating at least $2 billion from the sale of non-core assets, the interim chief said.

In early August, Teva announced plans to lay off 7,000 employees and close 15 plants but subsequently trimmed back some of the planned cuts at Israeli production facilities.

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