South Philly native and Teva Chairman Phillip Frost says drugmaker can't be nostalgic

Teva Pharmaceuticals officials (from left) CFO Eyal Desheh, Chairman Phillip Frost and CEO Jeremy Levin during opening bell ceremonies of the New York Stock Exchange. (Richard Drew / Associated Press, File)

 Teva Pharmaceuticals Ltd., board chairman Phillip Frost, who grew up in South Philadelphia, said in an interview with Bloomberg Markets magazine that the drugmaker can't afford to be nostalgic about operating as it did in the past.

“Teva is and always will be an Israeli company with strong Israeli roots,” Frost told Bloomberg, referring to the company headquarters. The Americas headquarters is in North Wales, Montgomery County.

“Teva also must act like a global pharmaceutical company," Frost said. "There’s a lot of nostalgia for the good old days when it was a family company and the board got together for a little lunch. That’s not what Teva is nowadays.”

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Even excluding some costs, Teva’s fourth-quarter profit fell 19 percent to $1.14 billion from a year earlier and sales fell 7.5 percent to $5.25 billion.

Frost graduated with the degree in French literature from the University of Pennsylvania before going to med school at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine at Yeshiva University in New York. Frost taught dermatology at the University of Miami. Bloomberg said in 1972, he founded a dermatology department at Miami’s Mount Sinai Medical Center and started doing deals on the side.