Business in Brief: Ruling on Stay of Proceedings for Ortam Sahar Engineering Deferred

Bank of Israel sets 2017 dates for policy-setting meetings | Canadian businessman joining controlling shareholder group at Mishorim Development | Leading TASE indexes edge up

The Tel Aviv District Court, in 2015.Eyal Toueg

Ruling on stay of proceedings for Ortam Sahar Engineering deferred

A request for a stay of proceedings in protection from creditors filed by Ortam Sahar Engineering has been deferred by the Tel Aviv District Court Wednesday. The company has asked for an immediate ex parte order, meaning one handed down without other interested parties present, but the court denied the request Wednesday, a day after the company announced that an investor group to have included British real estate investor Leo Noe had decided not to buy the company. Ortam Sahar’s main creditors are its three series of bondholders, whom the company owes 330 million shekels ($86 million), to be repaid in the next several years.  Company executives have been the subject of an investigation on suspicion of fraud and use of company funds for personal purposes. Following a drop on Tuesday, the company’s shares lost another 15.9% Wednesday, closing at 5.3 agorot. The company was also involved in a residential construction project a few years ago in Hadera that gained noterity when balconies at the project collapsed. (Uri Tomer)

Bank of Israel sets 2017 dates for policy-setting meetings

Israel’s central bank set the dates on Wednesday for its 2017 policy- setting meetings, after deciding to cut the number of meetings to eight a year from the previous 12. The move brings the bank in line with leading global central banks such as the U.S. Federal Reserve and European Central Bank. The Bank of Israel will hold policy-setting meetings on Jan. 23, Feb. 27, April 6, May 29, July 10, Aug. 29, Oct. 19 and Nov. 27. The bank considered a number of alternatives regarding interest rate decisions and when they would be announced. Among the factors that they considered were the release of major economic data and the timing of the Jewish holiday. (Moti Bassok and Reuters)

Canadian businessman joining controlling shareholder group at Mishorim Development

Canadian-Jewish businessman Alex Shnaider, a former owner of the Maccabi Tel Aviv soccer team, has expanded his holdings in income property firm Mishorim Development. After buying about 39 million shekels ($10.2 million) worth of shares in the company’s stock in December, Shnaider, who is based in Toronto, is now buying another 45 million shekels of the stock from controlling shareholder Gil Blutrich. Together the two will own 74% of Mishorim, split equally between the two. The transaction will be will be conducted at 9.50 shekels per share, a 57% premium over the stock’s market price. (Eran Azran

Leading TASE indexes edge up

The benchmark Tel Aviv 25 index rose 0.12% closing at 1,429.85 on Wednesday while the Tel Aviv 100 index was up by 0.17% to 1,250.63 points. Trading volume was 712 million shekels ($186 million). Bucking the trend was the Tel Aviv 75, which declined by 0.15% to 858.91. The Banks 5 index also declined, by 0.53% to 1,465.83. The Communications index was off 0.93%, pulled down by Bezeq, which slumped by 1.36% to 7.10 shekels. Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, by contrast, was up 3% to 165.50 shekels. Mishorim shares closed 12% higher at 6.77 shekels. (See story above for additional details). (Omri Zerachovitz)