Business in Brief

Madmoni’s latest film to debut in Czech festival

Director Yossi Madmoni’s latest film “A place in Paradise” has been selected for a world premier and as a contestant at the prestigious Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in the Czech Republic, which opens on June 28. The plot, which Madmoni also wrote, is set in the early days of the state: A hungry army officer accepts an offer by the base’s religious cook’s helper to cook him a meal in exchange for his place in Paradise. Forty years later, the officer’s son seeks out the cook’s helper hoping to cancel the contract. The movie stars Alon Abutbul, Yossi Pollak and Gabi Amrani. ‏(Nirit Anderman‏)

Modan publishes supposedly crowd-funded novel

Writer and satiricist Uzi Weill has been taken to task for his crowd-funding efforts to help him publish an upcoming novel, which had already come out in bookstores by the time some people paid for a “special signed, numbered copy.” Weill wrote on his Facebook page that he needed time and money to finish writing, and was offering the book for early sale at NIS 55. Weill said he would publish the book if he sold at least 1,000 copies. However, Weill’s book was in fact recently published by Modan. Weill apologized and promised his Facebook friends they would get their special copies soon. ‏(Maya Sela‏)

Israeli in running for British crime writers’ award

“The missing file” by Dror Mishani is one of six candidates for the International Dagger, a prestigious award given by the British Crime Writers Association. The book is competing for best international thriller, suspense or crime novel, which is given for a book translated into English. Mishani is the first Israeli writer to be shortlisted for the award, which carries a prize of 5,000 pounds for the author, and 1,000 pounds for the translator. Mishani’s book was translated by the Ra’anana-based translator Steven Cohen. ‏(Maya Sela‏) 

Kahlon won’t chair Israel Lands Administration

Moshe Kahlon, who earned a reputation as the people’s politician for breaking Israel’s cellphone oligopoly last year as communications minister, will not be appointed Israel Lands Administration chairman as expected. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who publicly promised him the post during the campaign for the January general election to signal his commitment to reforming the housing market, told Kahlon that because the coalition agreement put the ILA under the purview of the Housing Ministry the prime minister was no longer authorized to appoint the agency’s chairman. “The election results didn’t make it possible to put into place all our plans,” Netanyahu said. ‏(Zvi Zrahiya and Jonathan Lis‏)

Better Place liquidators ask to shut four battery-swap stations

The court-appointed liquidators of the Israeli operations of Better Place, the failed electric car infrastructure company, asked a court yesterday to let them shut down four of the company’s 38 battery-changing stations. The stations are not generating income and are simply burning cash, the liquidators, Sigal Rozen-Rechav and Shaul Kotler, told the court. The stations they are seeking to close are at Beit She’an, Beit Shemesh, the Kadouri junction in the north and the Sakharov Gardens junction at the entrance to Jerusalem. The liquidators say there are other comparable Better Place facilities nearby. ‏(Daniel Schmil and Yasmin Gueta‏)

Medical-gear exports rose 7% in first quarter

Israel exported $440 million worth of computer-based medical products in the first quarter, an increase of 7% from the same quarter last year, the Export Institute said yesterday. Of that, $164 million, or 37%, went to the United States, up 2% from the same period last year. Medical equipment exports to the European Union totaled $132 million, 7.5% higher than in the first quarter of 2012, accounting for 30% of the exports. Asia accounted for $100 million, a 15% jump year on year. In 2012, Israel sold $1.72 billion worth of medical equipment abroad, according to Angela Rabinovich, director of the institute’s life science division. ‏(Ora Coren‏)

Intel’s global CEO to visit Israel on Thursday

Brian Krzanich, the new CEO of the U.S. semiconductor giant Intel, will visit Israel for a few hours Thursday as part of a global tour in which he is discussing his vision for the company. Krzanich, who became CEO last month, is expected to meet with employees from around Israel at his company’s development center in Haifa. But he is not expected to meet with government officials about possible plans to build a new plant in Kiryat Gat if the company buys the local operations of Micron. When Paul Otellini, who left the post of Intel CEO last month, announced in November that he was stepping down, one candidate mentioned as his possible successor was Israeli David Perlmutter, Intel’s chief product officer and executive vice president. ‏(Inbal Orpaz‏)