Business in Brief

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Delek posts loss, delays London listing

Yitzhak Tshuva’s Delek Group on Tuesday reported a 120 million-shekel ($30 million) net loss in the fourth quarter and said it was delaying plans for a London listing. Weighed down by one-time capital losses and write-downs after divesting assets, the company said it posted a capital loss of 195 million shekels while revenue fell to 4.2 billion shekels from 5.5 billion. In fourth quarter 2013, the holding company posted a net profit of 125 million. A year earlier Delek said it delayed the listing, which it had planned for mid-2015, due to volatility in energy markets and regulatory issues in Israel. “We are actively seeking and examining a new strategic investment in the international energy market,” CEO Asaf Bartfeld said. Shares of Delek, ended 1.9% down at 1,026 shekels. (Reuters)

Trader arrested for alleged stock anipulation

Omri Weissman, head of stock trading at Excellence Investment House, was detained by Israel Securities Authority investigators on Monday on suspicions of manipulating share prices on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. The arrest came after an undercover probe uncovered evidence that Weissman had engaged in so-called front running with an associate, Avi Ashkenazi, during 2010-12. Ashkenazi is alleged to have bought shares that Weissman told him were about to be bought by Excellence, which, given the firm’s huge presence in the market of Excellence’s institutional clients, would cause their prices to rise, enabling Ashkenazi to sell the shares at a profit. ISA investigators say the two earned some 1.2 million shekels ($300,000) in 100 million shekels of trading. (Asa Sasson)

Canadian firm buys Fundtech for $1.25b

Fundtech, a one-time Clal Industries subsidiary that provides banking software, was acquired on Monday for $1.25 billion in cash by the Canadian financial technology firm D+H. Clal, which had a 58% stake in the company, sold Fundtech to the private equity firm GTCR four years ago in a deal that valued the company at the time at $390 million. New York-based Fundtech had revenues of $200 million; and 1,300 employees at the time, and today counts revenues of $263 million and 1,500 employees. D+H said Fundtech’s software, which helps banks with making payments, financial messaging and cash management, will be used to deepen its presence in the North American market. (Amir Teig)

IDB posts quarterly loss of NIS 752 million

IDB Development Corporation, the holding company at the apex of the IDB group, on Tuesday turned in a stunning 752 million-shekel ($189 million) loss for the fourth quarter, leaving it in the red to the tune of 999 million shekels for all of 2014. The quarterly loss, which compares with one of just 48 million a year earlier, came after IDB wrote down the value of its principal subsidiaries, such as Super-Sol, Clal Insurance and Cellcom Israel, by 691 million shekels. IDB also ran up 305 million shekels in financial and other costs. The loss leaves IDB with shareholders’ equity of just 223 million. Even after IDB’s controlling shareholder, Eduardo Elsztain and Moti Ben-Moshe, injected 1.5 billion shekels into the company, its market cap as of Tuesday was just 777 million shekels. IDB shares dropped 1.7% to end at 1.34 shekels. (Michael Rochvarger)

TA-25 gains in mostly lower market

The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange’s TA-25 index marked its third day of gains Tuesday. Most of the market was lower for the day, but the benchmark index was lifted by advances for a few key stocks to end the session up nearly 0.4% to 1,625.77 points, while the TA-100 gained 0.2% to 1,417.28. Turnover was 1.35 billion shekels ($340 million). Leading the market higher was Nice Systems, which climbed 2.8% to close at 243.90 shekels and Banks Hapoalim and Leumi, both which rose about 1.5%. A day after announcing a $3.5 billion acquisition, Teva Pharmaceuticals extended its gain in heavy trading, finishing up 0.9% at 249.60 shekels. But mobile operators Cellcom Israel and Partner Communications both tumbled – 3.6% to 19.23 and 3.5% to 11.05, respectively. (Omri Zerachovitz)

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