AIG to invest in new Shamrock fund

The Disney family fund is one of Israel's foremost foreign investors.

Shamrock Holdings, the investment arm of the Disney family in Israel is in the process of closing its new investment fund on $250 million. Sources inform ''Globes'' that the main investor in the new fund is global insurance giant AIG (NYSE: AIG), which will contribute $50 million, 20% of the fund. AIG's investment at a time like this is no small matter. The group, considered one of the world's largest insurance providers, was hit hard by the recent credit crunch, with its share crashing 60% over the past year. The company's CEO Martin Sullivan was replaced two months ago.

AIG opened a branch in Israel nine years ago, and also formed the mortgage insurance provider EMI. The company now intends to expand its investment in Isael through the new Shamrock fund.

Shamrock, which is managed by president and CEO Stanley Gold, began investing in Israel 20 years ago and is considered one of Israel's leading foreign investors. It has invested a total of NIS 1.5 billion in various industrial companies in Israel during the years it has been operating here. The company's funds invest principally in Israeli industrial companies which focus on export, including shoe company Teva Naot Ltd., Orad Hi-Tec Systems (AIM; XETRA: OHT), and cosmetic products company Dead Sea Laboratories Ltd..

The new Shamrock fund will also invest in Israeli export-oriented companies. The Disney family will reportedly invest several tens of millions of dollars in the new fund, with a further $50 million from AIG, and the rest from Israeli institutional investors.

Shamrock declined to comment on the report.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - - on August 12, 2008

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2008

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