Market Briefs

Two external directors quit Ormat

Two of Ormat Industries' external directors quit the board yesterday, announced the company, which designs and runs geothermal power plants. Two weeks ago the Gazit real estate group, which is mounting a takeover attack on Ormat (again ), demanded that a special assembly of shareholders convene and urged the shareholders to vote against extending another term on the board for the two external directors, Zvi Tropp and Azriel Gonen. Gazit blames the Ormat management and the board for the 35 percent drop in share price over the past two years. Ormat has rejected Gazit's charges that the company's finances and long-term planning have been managed poorly and that Tropp and Gonen are unqualified. (Tal Levy )

Midroog: State will stand behind IEC

The Midroog credit rating agency is confident that the state will continue to support the Israel Electric Corporation, but its latest report rates the electric company's debt at Aa2 with a negative outlook, portending a possible downgrade. The state-owned IEC provides an essential service and the Israeli government has repeatedly shown that it stands behind the liabilities of government companies, says Midroog. So why the negative outlook? That is based on regulatory uncertainty over structural change at the company and a dispute over its rates (the World Bank says it needs to raise its prices by 16% and the IEC wants the increase, but the regulator has refused to allow it ). The negative outlook is also due to the company's weak financial ratios and low liquidity, according to the rating agency. (TheMarker )

Aecon selling 25% stake in Route 6

The Canadian company Aecon is selling its interests in Route 6, Israel's only toll road. Aecon has signed agreements to sell its 25% stake in Derech Eretz Highways Management Corporation, which operates Route 6, also know as the Trans-Israel Highway, and its 33% interest in CJV, the construction company involved in paving the highway. Altogether Aecon will be getting $77.8 million. The buyers will be Israeli institutional investors, assuming that Aecon's partners in the companies, Africa Israel and Housing & Construction, don't exercise their rights of first refusal. Aecon isn't abandoning Israel, though. It retains its interest in the Derech Eretz company, which manages Route 431, and is involved in the Carmel tunnel project. (Avi Bar-Eli )

Aspen buys German shopping center

Aspen Real Estate has completed a deal to buy a shopping center in Kirchberg, Germany, for 5 million euros. The center is 4,000 square meters and has been leased in a 10-year contract to Wasgau, a health-food chain. Annual rent from the property comes to 445,600 euros, reflecting a return rate of 8.8% on the purchase price. (Yael Halak )

QlikTech debut a coup, including for JVP

QlikTech debuted on Wall Street on Friday, pulling off its initial public offering without using discounts to attract investors. The Pennsylvania-based company, which sells analytics software, floated at $10 per share, higher than the minimum price it had set. Though QlikTech isn't an Israeli company, one of its shareholders is Jerusalem Venture Partners, which owned 25.4% of its stock before the IPO (that amount has been diluted to 21.4% ). The venture capital fund can sell its shares after the lock-up period expires. (Guy Grimland )

Elbit Imaging gets A2/Negative debt rating

The Midroog credit rating agency has rated all Elbit Imaging's outstanding debt notes at A2 with a negative outlook, the company announced yesterday. The rating covers an expansion of Series G notes up to NIS 200 million more, if Elbit Imaging issues them, the company said. It also covers an existing NIS 400 million in Series G notes. Elbit Imaging, which builds and operates shopping and entertainment centers and hotels and develops medical devices, said it might not issue any more notes. (TheMarker )

Biocancell seeking to raise $10 million

Biocancell wants to raise $10 million and is looking at options, which range from offering shares on Wall Street to tapping private funds. The company, which is developing drugs for cancer, has accrued NIS 80 million in losses since its establishment and is running a shareholders equity deficit of NIS 23 million. Biocancell had NIS 9.4 million cash as of the end of the first quarter. The company has had a going concern warning in its books since the third quarter of 2009. (Nir Zalik )

Nadav Grinshpon's plea deal gets okay

Africa Israel vice chairman Nadav Grinshpon will not face charges or a fine for providing insider information to a third party, according to a plea bargain that won final approval yesterday. Grinshpon will be performing community service and donating to charity the amount he would have been fined. There are no limitations on the functions he may fulfill at publicly traded companies. (TheMarker )

Issta, Elran, Maariv, B-Connect moved to Maintenance List

The following securities have been moved to the Maintenance List of the TASE, due to noncompliance with listing regulations: Issta, Alonei Meitar, Elran Real Estate (shares and bonds ), Aricom, Boymelgreen Capital, B-Connect (shares and bonds ), BSR Engineering (shares and bonds ), BSR Projects (shares and bonds ), Golden Equity (shares and bonds ), Globalicom Trade (shares and bonds ), Vardinon Textile, Zoku, TopSpin Medical, TRD (shares and bonds ), Chemipal, Leadmas Properties, Midas Investments, Maariv (shares and bonds ), Matam, Polysack Plastic, Peleg Nia (shares and bonds ), Flight Medical Innovations, Profit (shares and bonds ), Rodemco (shares and bonds ), and Shrem Fudim Technologies. (TheMarker )