TheTicker/ Elsztain to Decide Who Will Lead IDB Group After Jewish Holidays

Oil Refineries raises NIS 400 million in institutional bond offering; Isramco reports $44 million in Q2 profits; TASE closes higher despite declines abroad.

Daniel Bar On

Eduardo Elsztain, the Argentinian Jewish businessman who is controlling shareholder of IDB Development, the company at the top of the IDB group, is expected to announce the selection of a new CEO for IDB Development after the Jewish holidays.

The new CEO will replace current CEO Haim Gavrieli, who was closely associated with the IDB group’s former controlling shareholder, Nochi Dankner, who lost control of the consortium after it ran into financial trouble. The ties did not prevent the CEO from staying on following Dankner’s departure, and he is thought to be highly regarded by Elsztain.

Gavrieli’s successor is expected to also serve as CEO of group subsidiary Discount Investment, the company that in turn controls such major Israeli companies as Cellcom Israel and Super-Sol. (Michael Rochvarger)


Oil Refineries raises NIS 400 million in institutional bond offering

Oil Refineries, which is also known by its Hebrew acronym Bazan and is controlled by the Israel Corporation, announced on Tuesday that it had raised 400 million shekels ($105 million) in a debt offering to institutional investors. Bazan, Israel’s largest refining and petrochemicals group, said the offering of 6-year bonds attracted demand of 650 million shekels.

The company noted that the issue was consistent with the company’s plan to diversify its sources of funding, lengthen the maturity of existing debt and lower financing costs. The bond offers were in the form of an expansion of two existing bond series, Series Heh and Vav. (Reuters and Yoram Gabison)


Isramco reports $44 million in Q2 profits

The Isramco Negev 2 Limited Partnership, which has a nearly 29% stake in the Tamar offshore natural gas field, has reported 2nd quarter profits of $44 million, up from $41 million for the quarter in 2014. The increase profits also helped the partnership reduce its quarterly financing costs by 8,5%.

Isramco’s revenues from the sale of natural gas and condensate, which is used in the production of Brent crude oil, grew by 2.9% over last year’s quarter, to $100 million. Most of the natural gas and condensate went to two customers, with over half of it going to the Israel Electric Corporation. Isramco also reported that it paid $11.1 million in royalties to the Israeli government in the second quarter, up from $10.7 million for the comparable quarter in 2014. (Yoram Gabison)


Kadimastem shares surge on trial’s success

Shares of Nes Tziona-based biotech company Kadimastem surged on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange on Tuesday, closing 10.1% higher on high trading volume following news of a successful pre-clinical trial on rats of a drug for the treatment of ALS, the degenerative muscle disease commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.

The results of the trial, the company said, demonstrate the effectiveness of Kadimastem’s cell-based treatment for ALS. In light of the success at this stage, the firm said it intends to take the next step with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and make a so-called Pre-IND filing, a pre-investigational new drug application in the coming weeks. (Yoram Gabison)


TASE closes higher despite declines abroad

Stocks generally rose moderately on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange on Tuesday, despite declines on exchanges abroad. Shares of companies in the IDB group were the subject of particular interest, following the agreement on a reverse merger between IBD’s agrochemical firm, Adama, and a company trading on China’s Shenzen Stock Exchange.

Shares of IDB group companies IDB Development and Discount Investment jumped 9.7% for the day. Shares of Gan Shmuel Foods surged by 13.2% on a favorable earnings report. The blue chip Tel Aviv-25 index rose 0.19% on Tuesday to 1,720.28 points, while the broader Tel Aviv-100 index gained 0.32%, rising to 1,503.53. Trading volume was 1.15 billion shekels ($300 million). (Shelly Appelberg)