Half a year later, Teva's 'pivot to growth' strategy appears to be bearing fruit

Six months on, Teva’s new “pivot to growth” strategy appears to be paying off.

In 2023’s third quarter, the Israeli-American generics giant reported global sales of $3.9 billion, up 7% from the same period in 2022. The company credited that growth to the momentum behind its branded meds Austedo and Ajovy, plus a “stable and sustainable generics business” in the U.S. that’s also seen “continued growth” in Europe and other international markets.

“I’m pleased with the quarter,” Teva’s CEO Richard Francis said during a recent interview with Fierce Pharma.

“It’s the second quarter consecutively where we’ve grown revenue of the company, which we haven’t done for many years, and the second quarter that we’ve increased revenue guidance for the year, which I think is even more positive.”

For all of 2023, Teva now expects to rein in $15.1 billion to $15.5 billion in revenues, up $100 million on both ends from a previous estimated range.

The win, in Francis’ mind, comes down to Teva’s recent “pivot to growth” strategy. Last week's results are an “early sign that the strategy is working,” Francis said.

“Obviously it’s early days, we’ve got to keep going, but the first steps are pretty important ones and so far, we seem to be heading in the right direction.”

As part of that strategy, Teva earlier this year announced it would separate its active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) business. Last week, the company announced the standalone unit’s new CEO, R. Ananthanarayanan (Ananth). Ananth will lead the API business starting Nov. 27 and will be based out of Teva’s headquarters in Parsippany, New Jersey, the company said in a recent press release. Ananth formerly led Teva API and the company’s Biologics Operations organization from 2014 to 2018.

On the API business separation, “when we came in and did the strategic review, we realized we were missing a big opportunity,” Francis said. “The global API market is growing quite healthily. We have a capability to serve that global market. We weren’t leaning into that because first and foremost we wanted to serve Teva, and that was a missed opportunity.”

Francis unveiled Teva’s new “pivot to growth” strategy back in May, four months after he’d taken the reins at the company.

The strategy is built on four “pillars.” The goals, to hear Francis tell it, are to deliver on Teva’s growth engine, step up innovation, create a generic powerhouse and deliver on “growth engines,” primarily driven by drugs like Austedo and Ajovy, as well as Teva’s biosimilars portfolio.

Teva had long been in need of a shakeup.

The company reported revenue of $14.9 billion for 2022, a 6% slide from the previous year. The company’s generics business posted sales declines in each of its three geographic regions: the U.S., Europe and international. Overall, sales of generics reached $8.6 billion last year, down from $9 billion in 2021.