Israeli pharmaceutical giant Teva names new CEO

Erez Vigodman serves as CEO of Makhteshim Agan Industries, where he will remain until February 6.

New Teva President and CEO Erez Vigodman (photo credit: Courtesy)
New Teva President and CEO Erez Vigodman
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Teva Pharmaceuticals on Thursday named Erez Vigodman as its new president and CEO, effective February 11.
“I understand the challenges facing Teva, and I am confident that, together with the management team, we can address these challenges and deliver on our commitment to creating value for our shareholders by expanding Teva’s businesses and delivering long-term growth,” he said in a statement.
Vigodman, 54, will fill the roles left vacant in late October by Jeremy Levin’s ouster. Levin was pushed out of the position he held less than 18 months over disagreements about the company’s strategy.
Vigodman currently serves as CEO of Makhteshim Agan Industries, the world’s leading generic-agrochemical company, where he will remain until February 6. Prior to that, he served as the Strauss Group’s CEO.
The decision to look outside the company, and at Vigodman in particular, was due to his experience in corporate restructuring, according to Teva vice chairman Amir Elstein, who headed the CEO search committee.
“Erez stood out due to his impressive track record in transforming global and complex corporations and delivering breakthrough results,” he said.
Levin had recommended a $2 billion global cost-cutting plan that ran into political trouble in Israel due to the layoffs it entailed. In the weeks leading up to his removal, rifts emerged between Levin and the board, particularly chairman Phillip Frost, over how to move forward with the plan.
After cultural clashes were cited as a source of strain with the South African- born Levin, the board notably opted for an Israeli executive this time around.
Teva hopes that Vigodman’s experience at Makhteshim Agan, which flourished under his leadership, and Strauss, which saw its sales more than double during his tenure, will bring the same magic to the pharmaceutical world.
Teva’s stock price on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange rose 0.4 percent following Thursday’s announcement.