Eli Rozenberg, the only one of the three people interested in buying El Al Israel Airlines Ltd. (TASE: ELAL), who has received a permit to acquire control of the financially troubled airline, has raised his bid. Rozenberg is now offering $101 million for a controlling 45% stake in the airline, after initially bidding $75 million.
Rozenberg, the son of New York-based businessman Kenny Rozenberg, sent a letter to Ministry of Finance director general Keren Terner and head of the budget division Shaul Meridor indicating that he is prepared to buy shares to the amount of $101 million in El Al's planned public offering on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange next week, providing it gives him control of the company.
Rozenberg's improved offer is based on the price per share of NIS 0.67 at which the State planned buying any shares that the public declines to offer.
The government's package to save El Al due to the financial difficulties caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, includes a $150 million offering on the stock market and 75% state guarantees for $250 million in bank loans. The deadline for the public offering is August 31. After the offering El Al will also be allowed to withdraw surplus funds of NIS 230 million in the emplyees compensation fund.
Last week Eli Rozenberg finally met the El Al board of directors, after he had been cold shouldered by them, and there had been an exchange of acrimonious letters between the lawyers of the parties. Rozenberg's representative wrote today, "We hope that the public offering process will be completed on the date set in a transparent and fair way so that there will not be additional difficulties will not arise against my client regarding his participation in this process. We are sure that immediately after the process, my client will become the controlling shareholder in El Al. We trust and feel sure that the good will of the Israeli government, which has offered to stand beside and assist El Al, will not change after the replacement of El Al's controlling shareholders."
Two other potential buyers have applied to the Government Companies Authority for a permit to buy control of El Al. They are Meir Gurvitz, a British-Israel businessman who has real estate interests in the UK and US, and David Sapir, a Russian-Israeli businessman who has tourism and telecommunications enterprises in Russia.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on August 24, 2020 © Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2020