Business in Brief: Spacecom Says It Will Launch Amos 17 Satellite Within Four Months

Bezeq lowers 2018 profit outlook, but sees higher cash flow ■ Tel Aviv shares post modest gains; Fattal leads most actives

SpaceX employees gather for a group photo in front of the Dragon capsule at a SpaceX hangar in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on Tuesday, December 18, 2018.
Marcia Dunn,AP

Spacecom says it will launch Amos 17 satellite within four months

Shares of Space soared on Sunday after the troubled satellite company said it won’t launch its next satellite, Amos 17, is less than four months from now. The company said the date range for the launch was May 20-June 19, but it was targeting the week of May 27 for Elon Musk’s company SpaceX to undertake the launch. Amos 17, which is being built by Boeing, is designed to replace the Amos 6, which was destroyed on a SpaceX Launchpad two years ago, plunging Spacecom into a crisis situation that it has yet to emerge from. Because of the loss, SpaceX isn’t charging Spacecom for the Amos 17 launch. Spacecom is counting on Amos 17, which was built at a cost of $161 million and will serve clients in Africa, Europe and the Far East, will enable the company to recover. Spacecom shares soared 30.5% to close at 8.34 shekels ($2.31). (Guy Erez)

Bezeq lowers 2018 profit outlook, but sees higher cash flow

As the company’s creditor shareholders struggle to fund a buyer for it, Bezeq said on Sunday its 2018 net profit would be about 15% lower than its original forecast, mainly due to one-time items rather than a decline in its business operations. Bezeq, Israel’s largest telecoms group, had forecast net profit of 1 billion shekels ($277 million) prior to this warning. The company said its revised forecast does not include charges for the early retirement of 337 workers, which in December it said would reduce net profit by 464 million shekels. The pressure on profits is expected to continue this year after Bezeq warned that it expected to write down the value of its Pelephone, Bezeq International and Yes units. On the positive side, Bezeq said its free cash flow was now expected to be 12% above forecast while it sees no substantial change to its earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization. Bezeq shares finished up 1% to 3.25. (Guy Erez)

Tel Aviv shares post modest gains; Fattal leads most actives

Tel Aviv shares ended moderately higher in light trading on Sunday, with Fattal hotels unusually being  the most heavily traded stock of the day. The benchmark TA-35 index advanced 0.3% by closing time to 1.574.34 points, while the TA-125 climbed nearly 0.4% to 1,434.08, on turnover of 462 million shekels ($128 million). Fattal rose 1.6% to close at 9.05 after announcing two deals worth 22 million shekels. On the TA-125, LivePerson gained 5% and rose to 99.19. The company beat analysts’ forecast last week to post a 1 cent a share loss for the fourth quarter on high-than-expected sales. Exalenz jumped 7.1% to 9.05 after it said that Chinese regulators had approved its Breath ID lab product. Among blue chips, Teva Pharmaceuticals lost 1.6% to 62.38, marking its fourth session down for a total of 5.5%. Enlight Energy led TA-125 gainers on a 3.5% rose to 2.19. (TheMarker Staff)