Teva's North American distribution center was one of the largest developments on the horizon for Philadelphia.

 

The new facility was supposed to be huge --more than 1 million square feet. It had been expected to house 400 workers to fill 200 jobs that would have moved to Philadelphia from elsewhere in Pennsylvania as well as 200 new jobs.

Now all that is up in the air, after Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter got a call on Monday from the company.

"What they told him is that they are putting the development of their North American distribution center up in the Northeast on hold," said Alan Greenberger, deputy mayor for economic development. "The word they used was 'pause' while they are still assessing their international business strategy."

In other words, the Israeli company has said it's not you, Philadelphia. It's us.

George Chressanthis, a former pharma executive who now directs the Center for Healthcare Research and Management at Temple University's Fox School of Business, calls the state of the pharmaceutical industry "tumultuous." Drug companies are releasing fewer new products.

"That's important for generic companies because generics rely on new branded drugs to come onto market, which eventually then lose patent expiration and then generics come in," he said.

Teva's stock has fallen significantly since it announced plans for the distribution center.

Teva spokeswoman Denise Bradley confirmed that the company had "made the decision to cease development plans for the proposed distribution center."

"At this time we cannot elaborate further about plans for this property," she said.