Teva offices
Teva officesFlash90

The chairman of Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, the world's largest maker of generic drugs, said Wednesday he would step down around the end of 2014.

The announcement by Phillip Frost came months after an abrupt change of CEO for the Israeli-based company.

"I have advised the board that I believe it will be appropriate for me to step down as chairman approximately by the end of this year," Frost said in a letter to shareholders.

"We will continue to evaluate the size and composition of the board to ensure that we maintain dynamic, exceptionally qualified leadership," he said, without giving specific reasons for his decision.

Frost was not immediately available for comment.

The letter also said the board's number had been reduced from 15 to 13 after two of its members retired.

Teva announced in January it had appointed a new chief executive, Erez Vigodman, to replace Jeremy Levin, who abruptly left in October.

Levin spent less than two years on the job, and media reports have said he left because of disagreements with Frost, a major shareholder, over the terms of a cost-cutting restructuring plan.

Teva said in October it planned to reduce staff by an average of 10 percent across its global operations by the end of 2014 as part of a mammoth cost-cutting plan.

Founded in 1901 in Jerusalem, Teva employs 7,500 people in Israel, where politicians and media have spoken of an impending 700-800 layoffs.