Israeli Fashion Chain Wins Rights to Open Nike-branded Stores in Canada

Business in Brief | Ithaca Energy shareholders accept takeover bid by Delek; Africa-Israel industries CEO quitting after sale of Negev Ceramics; Tel Aviv shares end lower, led by financial stocks

File photo: A Nike store
Caitlin OHara/Bloomberg

Fox gets rights to open Nike-branded stores in Canada

Fox, the Israeli fashion chain controlled by Harel Visel, said on Sunday it had won the franchise to own and operate Nike-branded stores in Canada. The company said its 90%-owned Retailers unit, had signed a seven-year agreement giving it rights to sell the entire range of Nike products all over Canada, except the province of British Columbia. Fox, which has operated Nike stores in Israel since 2014 in addition to its namesake Fox apparel and houseware chains, pledged to invest at least 15 million shekels ($4.1 million) over the next three years to develop the Canadian chain. Although it operates 122 stories outside of Israel and wholesales its fashion line overseas, those sales plunged by more than half last year to 24.5 million shekels. Until now Fox hasn’t had any presence in Canada. The company declined on Sunday to comment on why it was entering the Canadian market. Shares of Fox rose 1.6% to end at 80.19 shekels. (Eran Azran)

Ithaca Energy shareholders accept takeover bid by Delek

Yitzhak Tshuva’s Delek Group said on Friday its offer to take over North Sea oil producer Ithaca Energy has been accepted by Ithaca’s shareholders. Delek said it would pay about $350 million to boost its stake in the company to 76% from 19.7% now and begin consolidating its results in the group’s financial statements. Shareholders who did not agree to Delek’s terms have until May 3 to change their minds, Delek said, adding it expected to post a 150 million shekel ($41 million) gain from the deal. Announced in February, the deal valued Ithaca Energy at $646 million. “We believe Ithaca has great potential and its ability to expand its operations to markets it now operates in,” said Delek CEO Asaf Bartfeld. Shares of Delek, which has been expanding its non-Israeli energy holdings ahead of a planned London listing, ended up 0.4% at 804 shekels on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. (Eran Azran)

Africa-Israel industries CEO quitting after sale of Negev Ceramics

Saying he had completed his goal of selling Negev Ceramics, Yaki Vadmani announced on Sunday he was stepping down as CEO of Negev’s parent company Africa-Israel Industries effective May 31. Vadmani was appointed to the job only 14 months ago and was faced with the unenviable task of sorting out Africa-Israel Industries’ massive debt, much of which will be alleviated by the sale of Negev Ceramics for 335 million shekels ($91.7 million) to the private equity fund Viola Credit and a group of investors led by Yariv Lerner. The deal also calls for rescheduling 260 million shekels of Negev Ceramics’ debt and for the buyers to inject 75 million shekels into the Africa-Israel Industries, ended 1.2% higher at 56.69 shekels. (Shelly Appleberg)

Tel Aviv shares end lower, led by financial stocks

Tel Aviv shares ended lower in light trading on Sunday, with finance shares pacing the losses. The TA-35 and TA-125 indices both lost about  0.6% to 1,385.16 and 1,251.16 points,  respectively, on turnover of 572 million shekels ($155 million). Israel Discount bank led financial stocks lower, falling 1.9% to 8.63 while Phoenix was down 1.8% at 14.29. Mannkind plunged 15.6% to 3.43 shekels after it agreed over the weekend to a debt-for-equity swap at $1.15 a share. Teva Pharmaceuticals rose 1.1% to 114 shekels after it launched an asthma inhaler that will be the first direct competition to GlaxoSmithKline’s best-selling Advair. Mazor Robotics surged 8.9% up to 66.49 after CEO Ori Hadomi was interviewed on CNBC by stock guru Jim Cramer. In the bond market, Property & Building Limited raised 446 million shekels in the institutional tranche of its offering, 116 million more than planned. ILDC raised 76 million shekels in its institutional tranche. (Uri Tomer)