After weeks of talks, Suny Electronics Ltd. (TASE: SUNY), controlled by Ilan Ben-Dov, today announced that it was auctioning its stake in Internet portal Tapuz People Ltd. (TASE:TPUZ), which operates Israel's largest blogging and forums site. Suny owns 64% of Tapuz.
In the auction, Suny will offer 9.8 million Tapuz shares at a minimum price of NIS 10 million or Suny bonds at a nominal price of NIS 25 million (Suny's three bonds are traded at NIS 0.22-0.25 per bond on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE)).
Suny announced that the deadline for submitting bids is June 3 at noon. If no relevant bids are received, Ben-Dov will buy the Tapuz shares that Suny is selling. Tapuz's other shareholders are IBI Investment House Ltd. (TASE:IBI) (6.84%), Saknai Net Ltd. (5.6%), and Mordechai Cohen (5.59%), with the public holding the remaining 18.22%.
The sale of Tapuz follows Ben-Dov's attempts to sell assets to meet Suny's bond payments. In early 2012, Suny sold Beit Tapuz in Ramat Gan for NIS 13.2 million. The website is currently managed and operated from an office in Bnei Brak.
Tapuz lost NIS 1.6 million in 2012, and its revenue was NIS 26 million, 34% less than in 2011. The results were partly due to the difficult situation of the Israeli advertising market. Despite the results, the company distributed a dividend of NIS 10 million last year.
Tapuz owns several websites, including "My First Homepage", video clips site "Flix", and Tapuz People's portal. Tapuz is Israel's fourth most popular domestic portal, with 1.34 million unique users in March.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on May 6, 2013
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