Private equity form Apax Partners Israel, headed by Zehavit Cohen, is in talks to buy 50% of Israeli retail chain Osher Ad for NIS 450-500 million.
The negotiations between Apax and Osher Ad owner Avrum Moshe Margalit are at an advanced stage.
Osher Ad's target market is the haredi (ultra-Orthodox Jewish) market. It is known for selling products packed in large quantities at low prices. It operates large branches in commercial and industrial zones, and does not have a presence not in inner city locations.
Osher Ad recently opened its eighteenth branch, in Haifa, and it opened a branch in the Rishon Lezion West industrial zone a few months ago. Osher Ad also operates a chain of supermarkets in the US under the Bingo brand. The first branch was opened in Brooklyn, and a second branch is opening in New Jersey. A third branch is under construction. Industry sources estimate that Osher Ad has huge potential in the US.
The chain uses Supersmart technology, which allows shoppers to pay for goods using an app on their telephones without going through a checkout. The app is used to scan the goods in the shopping trolley and pay for them.
If a deal is reached, it will not be the first time that Apax takes a stake in the retail and food industry. In 2015, Apax sold control of Israel's largest food company, Tnuva, to Bright Food of China, at a NIS 8.6 billion valuation. Apax recently sought to carry out an IPO on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange for price comparison website Zap, which it owns, but the offering was cancelled at the last minute.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on November 25, 2018
© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2018