Israel's Spacecom Says Chinese Group Agreed to Pay $190 Million for Company

Business in Brief: Teddy Sagi earns $412 million from selling 12% stake in Playtech; Namco on its way to becoming 18th U.S. property firm traded on TASE; Shares end lower as turnover swells on MSCI index adjustments.

SpaceX explosion destroying AMOS-6 satellite on September 1, 2016.
SpaceX explosion destroying AMOS-6 satellite on September 1, 2016. Screenshot of USLaunchReport

Spacecom says Xinwei agreed to pay $190 million for company

Spacecom on Wednesday confirmed reports that negotiations with China’s Beijing Xinwei Technology Group had reached an agreement on a sale price of $190 million for the operator of satellites but that the sides had yet to resolve other issues. The price marks a sharp drop from the $285 million Xinwei had agreed to before Spacecom’s Amos 6 satellite was destroyed in an explosion on the eve of its launch. The launch had been a condition for Xinwei to complete the acquisition, but the two sides resumed talks and have extended the deadline for completing them twice since then. The lower price is still 24% above Spacecom’s market cap even after its share price surged Tuesday amid reports of the new figure. On Wednesday, shares of Spacecom finished down 2.5% at 26.93 shekels. That remains a discount, which could be explained by Spacecom’s warning that there was no certainty that the deal would be completed.  (Uri Tomer and Guy Erez)

Teddy Sagi earns $412 million from selling 12% stake in Playtech

Israeli entrepreneur Teddy Sagi sold a 12% stake in his London-traded gambling software company Playtech on Wednesday as the shares trade at their all-time high for about 330 million pounds ($412 million). Playech told the London Stock Exchange that Sagi’s investment vehicle Brickington had sold 38.7 million ordinary shares, 6.4 million more than he had originally planned amid strong buyer demand, at a price of 850 pence per ordinary share, or 8% less than Playtech’s market price. And, with demand satiated and the floating now much larger, Playtech shares ended down 6.8 % for the day at 859 pence. The sale will leave Sagi with 21.6% of the company, which he is committed not to sell for the next 180 days under the terms of the offer. Playtech said Sagi was selling down his take to diversify his assets, which are estimated to be with about $3.5 billion. (Omri Zerachovitz)

Namco on its way to becoming 18th U.S. property firm traded on TASE

Namco Realty is due to become the 18th North American property company to issue debt on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. The U.S. shopping malls owner raised 450 million shekels ($117.3 million) in the institutional tranche of its first-ever bond issue on Tuesday and expects to raise a few million more in the public tranche slated for next Monday. The issue was met by strong demand from buyers like Clal Insurance and Excellence and will carry a comparatively low interest rate of 5.8%. Namco, which is controlled by Israeli Igal Namdar, has a portfolio of 33 malls mostly on the U.S. east coast. Its strategy, which it plans to continue with the proceeds of its latest offering, is to buy neglected properties and upgrade them. The bonds were rated A-plus by the Maalot agency, the same as Lightstone and Related – two other U.S. property companies on the TASE – whose bonds trade at 5.8% and 4.9%, respectively. (Eran Azran)

Shares end lower as turnover swells on MSCI index adjustments

Tel Aviv shares ended lower amid a torrent of trading that delayed the closing bell by 15 minutes on Wednesday as investors stocked up on Elbit Systems and Frutarom stock ahead of their inclusion in the MSCI Israel index. Turnover of 2.31 billion shekels ($600 million) was more than double its recent daily average. Some 441 million in Elbit shares were traded, ending down 1.8% at 387.80 shekels, while Frutarom fell 0.5% to 206 on turnover of 378 million. The market started the day higher, but quickly changed course, leaving the blue chip TA-25 at 1,445.90 and the TA-100 at 1,263.79, drops of about 0.3% for each of them. Teva Pharmaceuticals fell 2.8% to 142 shekels, but Housing & Construction Limited advanced 7.1% to 7.10 after reporting a 35% jump in third-quarter net. IDB Development raised 383.5 million shekels in bonds at 6.95%, its second effort after regulators blocked it from using its Clal Insurance stake as collateral. (Shelly Appelberg)