Business in Brief: Weak Wall Street Opening Erases Most of TASE Gains

3D bio printer Collplant shares surge on news of deal ■ Paz board avoids confrontation with Meitav Dash over permanent chairman ■ Weak Wall Street opening erases most of TASE gains

An electronic board displaying market data is seen at the entrance of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, in Tel Aviv, Israel January 29, 2017.
REUTERS/Baz Ratner/File Photo

3D bio printer Collplant shares surge on news of deal

Shares of tissue repair company Collplant Holdings shot up nearly 30% on Monday to a market cap of 95 million shekels ($26 million) after reporting a developing, licensing and commercialization agreement with United Therapeutics Corporation. The two companies will develop artificial lungs based on 3D bio-prints for lung transplants. The collaboration is based on human collagen that Collplant develops through genetic engineering of the tobacco plant using patented technology developed by Prof. Oded Shoseyov. Collagen is the dominant protein in the human body. According to the agreement, Collplant will provide the biological printing for several years during the development process and will provide technical support when United Technologies builds a production plant in the United States. Collplant also granted United Therapeutics an option to expand use of Collagen to develop and market three additional organs. Shares of Collplant closed up 29.6% at 50 agorot, while United Therapeutics ended down 0.9% at 12.19. (Yoram Gabison)

Paz board avoids confrontation with Meitav Dash over permanent chairman

The board of Paz Oil decided Monday not to decide who will be the company’s permanent chairman, giving into Meitav Dash’s demand not to fill the position before a shareholders’ meeting, which will discuss a motion to increase the number of board members from nine to 10. Meitav Dash, the largest institutional shareowner of Paz (8.8%), asked the board in writing Thursday. Hedge fund Noked, which owns 2% of Paz, joined the request this week. The letter described the move as an attempt to create a “counterbalance to the dominant management of Paz.” The Paz board will appoint as chairman one of two board members, Eliezer Shkedy or Arik Steinberg. Because Meitav Dash already appointed the company’s external director, the rules prohibit it from nominating the chairman. This move would allow it to add another board member like Avraham Bigger, a former Paz CEO, who could then be a third candidate for the position.
(Yoram Gabison)

Weak Wall Street opening erases most of TASE gains

The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange ended Monday slightly up, as most of the day’s gains were wiped out by a weak opening on Wall Street. The TA-25 index closed up 0.08% at 1613.02 points, while the broader TA-125 finished the day at 1454.64, up 0.04%. The Banks-5 index led all indexes, rising 1.1% to 2177.72, thanks to sizable gains by Leumi, Mizrahi and Discount. Meitav Dash was the big winner on the TA-90, advancing 7.4%, likely on news of negotiations to sell Psagot to Centerbridge Partners for 2.5 billion to 3 billion shekels. The biggest climber of the day was Collplant, whose shares skyrocketed 30% on turnover of 18 million shekels, 83 times its daily average, after announcing a partnership agreement to produce 3D bio-printed lungs (see story above). Bond indices all closed slightly down, under 1% each. In the forex market, the dollar declined 0.4% to 3.65 shekels and the euro went up 0.2% to 4.20 shekels. (TheMarker)