Business in Brief


BoI governor plays down exchange rate impact

The Bank of Israel is not indifferent to the shekel-dollar exchange rate, its governor, Karnit Flug, told the Knesset Finance Committee yesterday. “We are certainly trying to moderate it,” she said referring to the strengthening of the Israeli currency in the past year. “The appreciation was more moderate in the past year, among other things due to our efforts.” The exchange rate has prompted warnings of damage to the country’s exporters, but Flug said exporters have not been as sensitive to it as commonly assumed, especially in the high-tech industry. She said every 1% increase in the shekel’s value reduces exports by 0.2%. (Zvi Zrahiya)

Kibbutz Gaash fined for illegal shopping mall

Kibbutz Gaash was fined 1.3 million shekels (about $426,000) for building and operating a shopping mall on its property without getting proper authorization. Judge Oz Ezra Nir of Netanya Magistrates Court, who ordered the kibbutz to post another 1.5 billion bond and promise it would not violate the law again. The kibbutz began erecting buildings for tenants such as Home Center 14 years ago, using temporary permits. They expired in 2007, but Gaash and its real estate development unit continued to rent the buildings. Nearly all the tenants have since left. (Arik Mirovsky)

Forbe names Israeli a top young entrepreneur

Amit Avner, the 28-year-old CEO and co-founder of the U.S.-Israeli startup Taykey, was named one of Forbes magazine’s “30 Under 30” top entrepreneurs this week. Forbes called Avner, who developed an Internet search engine at age 14 and served in the Israeli Defense Force’s intelligence and programming unit, “a coding prodigy.” Taykey, which Avner founded in 2008 with Omer Dror and Itay Birnboim, does advertising for companiessuch as American Expressand Samsung to put their brands in online conversations. Taykey has offices in New York and Tel Aviv. (TheMarker Staff)

Bank of Israel headquarters in Jerusalem. The central bank is due to decide on July 28 whether to lower its base lending rate from 0.75%.Credit: Tomer Appelbaum

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