Shapir in Talks to Buy Control of Dor Alon as Holding Company Struggles With Debt

Struggling with $233 million in debt, Alon Blue Square reportedly asking for $181 million for Israel’s largest chains of gas stations.

FILE PHOTO: Dor Alon gas station.
Doron Golan

Shapir Engineering and Industry is in talks to buy Dor Alon, which controls one of Israel’s largest chains of gas stations and convenience stores, from the Alon Blue Square holding company, TheMarker has learned.

Struggling under a 900-million-shekel ($233 million) pile of debt to banks and bondholders, Alon Blue Square is reportedly asking for between 670 million shekels and 700 million shekels (roughly between $174 million and $181 million) for Dor Alon, slightly more than its market capitalization on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.

The sale would bring Alon Blue Square, which also controls the ailing Mega family of supermarket chains, some 500 million shekels in cash.

Sources say that the talks with Alon Blue Square, which together with its parent company Alon controls 71% of Dor Alon, are sufficiently advanced that Shapir will have to decide whether it wants to conduct due diligence.

Shapir supplies materials to the construction industry and also manages building projects, so Dor Alon would represent an entirely new area of business for the company.

Shares of Alon, which also owns the AM:PM convenience-store chain, ended unchanged at 41.04 shekels Thursday. Shares of Shapir fell 0.5%, to 6.62 shekels, and Alon Blue Square lost 0.4% to 1.22.