Elsztain's Discount Drops Out of Bidding for Eurocom

Elsztain’s bid has been complicated by Discount’s shareholder control of Cellcom Israel, the country’s biggest mobile provider and a rival to Bezeq’s Pelephone unit

Eduardo Elsztain, founder and chief executive officer of IRSA Inversiones y Representaciones SA, listens during the LatinFinance Argentina Financial Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on Thursday, May 11, 2017. The summit gathers the financial leaders of the President of Argentina Mauricio Macri's administration, global investors and financiers to explore the road ahead for Argentina. Photographer: Erica Canepa/Bloomberg
Bloomberg

Discount Investment Corporation, the holding company controlled by Eduardo Elsztain, said Thursday it was pulling out of bidding for the company that controls Bezeq, a move that leaved Naty Saidoff as the only serious contender.

In a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, Discount said it would not be offering a revised bailout bid for Eurocom Communications, the financially troubled holding company that controls Bezeq through a string of intermediary subsidiaries.

“The company will continue to follow developments in forming a creditor agreement for Eurocom group and may reconsider the possibility of a renewed offer if conditions allow,” the company said.

Elsztain’s bid has been complicated by Discount’s shareholder control of Cellcom Israel, the country’s biggest mobile provider and a rival to Bezeq’s Pelephone unit. Although the Antitrust Authority said it would allow Discount to submit a bid for Eurocom, it conditioned the bid on Discount’s divesting Cellcom before the takeover.

As an insurance policy against its failing to sell Cellcom by the deadline, Eurocom’s bank creditors had demanded Discount provide a 200 million shekel ($56.7 million) nonrefundable deposit.