Business in Brief: Israel Discount Bank to Cut 1,000 Jobs in Five Years

Housing & Construction Berlin subsidiary raises 200m euro in stock offering | Former owners of Rimsa sue Teva, claim Israeli drugmaker has buyer’s remorse.

Ofer Vaknin

Israel Discount Bank to cut 1,000 jobs in five years

Israel Discount Bank said Wednesday it has approved an efficiency plan that includes an early retirement program and which is expected to help reduce its workforce by about 1,000 people in the next five years. Under the plan, 500 workers will be able to retire under preferred terms and most will retire by the end of 2016, said Discount Bank. The overall cost of the plan is estimated at 510 million shekels ($135 million) of which 60 million shekels was recorded in the bank’s first-quarter 2016 results. Another 130 million shekels, after taxes, will be charged to its bottom line by the end of 2016 and the rest will be spread over the next 12 years. Discount Bank said since an earlier retirement plan began in mid-2014, its workforce has fallen to 9,300 from 10,300. Between 2014 and 2021, the workforce is expected to fall by 20%. (Reuters)

Housing & Construction Berlin subsidiary raises 200m euro in stock offering

ADO Properties, a subsidiary of Housing & Construction, has raised 200 million euros (about $250 million) in a share offering at 35.50 euros a share. That was 6% below the stock’s market price at the close of trading on the Frankfurt exchange on Tuesday. ADO Properties specializes in buying and managing residential and commercial properties in Berlin. ADO Properties’ immediate parent company, ADO Group, which is traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, bought 74 million euros of the new shares to maintain its 37% stake in ADO Properties. (Yoram Gabison)

Former owners of Rimsa sue Teva, claim Israeli drugmaker has buyer’s remorse

The former owners of a Mexican drugmaker bought by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries last year have sued in New York. They claim the Israeli generic drug giant is trying to back out of its purchase of Representaciones e Investigaciones Medicas SA, known as Rimsa, by making false accusations against them. Teva, which paid $2.3 billion for Rimsa, said that after the purchase it discovered violations perpetrated by the sellers, including disparities in the descriptions of manufacturing processes. Teva said it had been defrauded, adding that it will fight the suit vigorously and seek compensation. The former owners, brothers Fernando and Leopoldo de Jesus Espinosa Abdala, claim that Teva didn’t understand the Mexican market and Rimsa’s operations and is trying to back out of the acquisition after allegedly ruining the company through layoffs and the closure of production lines and discovering that they had overpaid for the company. (Yoram Gabison)

Merged Adama to be first global company on Chinese stock exchange

Israel’s Adama Agricultural Solutions, the world’s largest manufacturer of generic insecticide, is close to completing its conversion into a Chinese company that will be traded on China’s Shenzhen Stock Exchange. The development follows approval by the board of China’s Hubei Sanonda of the firm’s merger with Adama. Sandonda, which is controlled by ChemChina, will acquire full ownership of Adama at a company valuation of $2.8 billion. The resulting company will be called Adama on the Shenzhen exchange, becoming the first global company to be traded on a Chinese stock market. Sandonda’s board also approved a private stock offering representing a 10% of its shares to Cinda Asset Management for $380 million. (Yoram Gabison)

Amdocs confirms acquisition of three firms

Israeli business systems firm Amdocs has confirmed that it is buying an Israeli firm, Pontis, along with two overseas startups, California-based Vindicia, which is a payment service provider, and the Irish firm Brite Bill, a billing data company, for a collective price tag of about $260 million. The sum is roughly evenly split among the three. The acquisitions are projected to boost Amdocs’ revenues by between 1.5% and 2% in the next financial year, which begins in October. Pontis has developed technology serving the communications sector that automatically generates marketing recommendations in real time that is tailored to the customer. It has a workforce of about 200, half in Ra’anana and the rest abroad. (Omri Zerachovitz)

TASE edges higher, Nana Dimension gains another 10%

The benchmark TA-25 index rose by 0.11% in trading on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange Wednesday, closing at 1,432.28 points. The broader TA-100 index gained 0.09%, closing at 1,255.27 points. Trading volume was 2.6 billion shekels ($686 million). The Biomed index rose 0.3% to 463.70 points, in large measure thanks to Opko Health, which rose 3.5% to 38.50 shekels in heavy trading, and Navidea Biopharmaceuticals, which surged 7.3% to 3.40 shekels. Nano Dimension shares jumped 10.2% for the day, closing at 6.39 shekels, after gaining 6% the day before, in part on news that it had supplied its first U.S. customer with a 3-D printer. (Uri Tomer)