The Ticker: Elbit Systems Gets $46 Million NATO Contract for Aircraft Protection Systems

Elbit gets $46 million NATO contract for aircraft protection systems; Natural Resources Holdings seeks to buy all of Canada's Backbone bitcoin firm; Banks 5 at record high on TASE

FILE PHOTO: Logo of Israeli defense electronics firm Elbit Systems is seen at their offices in Haifa, Israel February 26, 2017.
BAZ RATNER/REUTERS

Elbit Systems gets $46 million NATO contract for aircraft protection systems

The defense contractor Elbit Systems said on Tuesday that it won a follow-on $46 million contract to supply additional direct infrared countermeasures (DIRCM) self-protection systems to NATO for its Airbus A330 tankers. The contract will be carried out over four years.

Similar to several previous contracts from global air forces and other customers, Elbit Systems will equip NATO’s Airbus A330 tankers with the DIRCM systems along with infrared-based passive airborne warning systems. Peter Dohmen, general manager of the NATO Support and Procurement Agency, said the systems will allow the aircraft, crew and passengers to operate more safely in hostile environments. Demand for aircraft defense systems was one of the main factors boosting Elbit’s electro-optic revenues by 39% between January and September of this year compared to the period last year.

Elbit shares closed off 0.51% in trading on the Tel Aviv exchange on Tuesday, closing at 465.20 shekels ($132.91). (Reuters and Yoram Gabison)

TASE index changes to force 10 firms to distribute NIS 1.2 billion in shares

In the run-up to the final stage at the end of the year of revamping the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange’s indexes, ten companies that don’t meet the requirement that at least 30% of their shares be held by members of the public will be forced to distribute shares collectively worth 1.25 billion shekels ($356 million) within the next two weeks.

The figure was calculated by a capital market source engaged in the exchange traded notes business. The firms that will be required to distribute shares include the real estate firm the ADO Group, the IDB Group’s Discount Investment Corp, and Direct Insurance. Each will be required to distribute public shares ranging in value between tens and hundreds of millions of shekels. If they fail to meet the 30% threshold, they will be excluded from the leading TASE indexes when they are revised in February. At this time, only 16.75% of ADO’s shares are held by members of the public. (See story below.) (Eran Azran)

Two directors pushed off board of the ADO Group in shareholder revolt

The Lapidoth Group’s Jacob Luxenburg chalked up a win of sorts in his efforts to force the controlling shareholders of Shikun & Binui’s ADO Group real estate firm to buy ADO’s shares at a premium. The members of the public owning shares in ADO voted not to renew the terms on the board of Michal Marom Brickman and Limor Baladev, two outside directors. The vote came against the backdrop of the Lapidot group’s claim that the two directors had failed to meet their responsibilities, allegedly favoring the interests of Shikun & Binui over the interests of the minority shareholders. (Yoram Gabison)

Natural Resource Holdings seeking to buy all of Canada’s Backbone bitcoin firm

Natural Resource Holdings, the TASE-traded firm that has seen its share value jump after it announced its entry into the blockchain industry, has revised its purchase agreement for the Canadian cryptocurrency firm Backbone Hosting Solutions.

Natural Resources now says that it will be acquiring 100% of the Canadian company’s shares rather than the initial 75%. Natural Resources, which now goes by the name Blockchain Mining, said it would buy Backbone in two stages, the first of which involves taking a 60.7% stake in the Canadian firm. The plan calls for expanding the number of Natural Resource shares from 14.7 million to 55.1 million, with Backbone shareholders owning 73.3% of them.

In the second stage, it will offer the remaining Backbone shareholders, who now own 39.3% of the Canadian firm, the chance to acquire their stake in a cumulative 26.2 million shares of Natural Resources. Shares of Natural Resources closed down 2.39% on Tuesday at 42.95 shekels ($12.27) on volume of 26.1 million shekels. (Guy Erez)

Banks 5 at record high on TASE, but TA 35 and TA 125 barely budge

The benchmark Tel Aviv 35 index slipped just 0.02% on Tuesday, closing at 1,473.56 points, while the Tel Aviv 125 inched up 0.03% to 1,334.19. By contrast, however, the Banks 5 index jumped 2.22% to 1,900.78, a record, boosted by a 3.25% rise in Bank Leumi shares, which closed at 20.26 shekels ($5.79). The Biomed index fell 1.21% to 368.84 while the Real Estate 15 rose 0.99% to 550.26 points.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries shares attracted the largest trading volume, 200 million shekels, closing off 2.74% at 63.31 shekels amid continued attention over the company’s plans for major layoffs in Israel and abroad. (See further coverage on this page). Enlight Renewable Energy shares were the subject of hugely disproportionate trading volume, as 16.6 million shekels of the company’s stock changed hands. The normal daily average is about a million shekels. In foreign currency trading, the representative rate of the U.S. dollar slipped just below 3.50 shekels, to 3.498, off 0.427% for the day. The euro rate was set at 4.1317 shekels, down 0.232%. (Guy Erez)