Tel Aviv Stocks Shrug Off Syria Attack to End Higher

Business in Brief: Israeli importer eyes IPO on Tel Aviv Stock Exchange ■ Partner in pact to offer Amazon Prime Video to TV subscribers ■ CBRE agrees to buy Israel commercial real estate services firm Man ■ Histadrut threatens strike or legal action over Ashdod plant closing

A stock market ticker displays financial information and world time zones in the lobby of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, August 4, 2016.
Bloomberg

Israeli importer eyes IPO on Tel Aviv Stock Exchange 

Globrands, the Israeli importer of brands like Nutella and Kinder Bueno as well as Camel and Winston cigarettes, is planning an initial public offering on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, TheMarker has learned. The company is expected to be valued at over 1 billion shekels ($285 million), which comes to 12 to 14 times earnings. Globrands has seen its revenues swell in recent years to reach 2 billion shekels, but net profits are much slimmer because of high taxes on tobacco and are estimated at no more than 80 million last year. The structure of the offering is still undetermined but will probably include a mix of insiders selling shares and new stock. Fishman Holdings, the investment vehicle of the bankrupt tycoon Eliezer Fishman, owns 30% of Globrands and the trustee controlling the share will be seeking to cash out of as much of the holding as possible. Globrand’s controlling shareholder is founder and Chairman Yaron Gazit. (Guy Erez) 

Partner in pact to offer Amazon Prime Video to TV subscribers

Partner Communications, Israel’s second-largest mobile phone operator, said on Sunday it had signed a collaboration agreement with Amazon Prime Video for its TV service. Partner TV subscribers, who have had access to Netflix content for close to a year, now be able to subscriber to the Amazon Prime Video service on Partner TV set top boxes ar a cost of $6 a month after a six-month trial price of $3 a month. Partner said it is the only television service in Israel to offer the Amazon Prime Video application on a set top box and the first Over the Top service in the world to support this application on an Android TV set top box. Financial details were not disclosed. Amazon is a significant player in the global content market, investing $5 billion annually, including a new production of Lord of the Rings.  Partner shares closed up 3.9% at 15.63 shekels ($4.44). (Amitai Ziv)

CBRE agrees to buy Israel commercial real estate services firm Man

CBRE Group, the largest commercial real estate services and investment firm in the world, is getting a toehold in Israel. The Los Angeles-based company said on Sunday it had signed an agreement to buy Man Properties, which provides commercial real estate services, in a deal valuing the company at 20 million shekels ($5.7 million). Founded in 1996 by Jackie Mukmel and Chaim Agi, Man has led projects for Israeli and multinational companies like Teva Pharmaceuticals, IBM, Intel and Microsoft and has been CBRE’s agent in Israel since 1999. With $14 billion in turnover last year, CBRE counts 80,000 employees in more than 450 offices around the world, providing facilities and project management; mortgage banking; appraisal and valuation; and research and consulting. CBRE said it was buying Man to strengthen its presence in the Israeli market, which it said was enjoying rapid growth. (Gili Melnitcki)

Histadrut threatens strike or legal action over Ashdod plant closing

The Histadrut labor federation warned on Sunday it would strike or take legal action against Teva Pharmaceuticals if the drug maker does not suspend a decision to close a plant in the port city of Ashdod. Debt-laden Teva, the world’s largest generic drug maker and Israel’s biggest company, said last week that it would close the unprofitable plant in March 2019 and fire 197 employees after failing to find a buyer for the facility. In a letter to Teva management, the Histadrut said the company’s decision was contrary to a previous declaration that it would retain most of its operations in Israel.The federation said it had been in contact with potential buyers of the plant who said that their requests to enter talks had been ignored.A Histadrut spokesman declined to name the potential buyers but said there were two such offers. Teva shares ended up 0.09% at 64.15 shekels ($18.24). (Reuters)

Tel Aviv stocks shrug off Syria attack to end higher

The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange basically disregarded the allied attack on Syria to end higher on Sunday. After getting off to a slow start, the benchmark TA-35 popped higher in early afternoon to end almost 0.7% up at 1,471.43 points. The TA-125 gained 0.55% to 1,343.67 on turnover of 548 million shekels ($156 million). Amir Kahanovich, chief economist at Excellence Investments, said the U.S. attack on Syria was having no impact. “The fact of the matter is the market isn’t interested in stories but the impact on corporate profits. The war between Gog and Magog in Syria may cause great human suffering but so long as the battlefield remains there, investors are more interested in the price of oil,” he said. Among the biggest gainers, Elbit rose 2.1% to 439 shekels, Enlight Energy added 3.4% to 1.74 and Cellcom Israel climbed 4.2% to 26.08. Frutarom turned 0.8% lower to 354.70 after a three-day rally sparked by takeover reports. (Guy Erez)