Gad Zeevi bid sends Bezeq soaring

Gad Zeevi  photo: Eyal Izhar

Zeevi, who tried and failed to take over Israeli telco Bezeq twenty years ago, has made an offer for Internet Gold, which controls Bezeq indirectly.

Gad Zeevi has made a bid to buy control of Bezeq Israeli Telecommunication Co. Ltd. (TASE: BEZQ). Internet Gold Golden Lines Ltd. (Nasdaq: IGLD; TASE:IGLD), which controls Bezeq through B Communications Ltd. (Nasdaq:BCOM; TASE: BCOM), reported yesterday evening that, through law firm Shimonov & Co., Zeevi had submitted a detailed proposal to its bondholders. Zeevi was a major shareholder in Bezeq in the distant past.

Under the proposal, Zeevi will buy 100% of the shares in Internet Gold for NIS 300 million. This amount plus NIS 50 million of Internet Gold's cash will be invested in B Communications, which controls Bezeq, in the framework of a financing round.

Zeevi is demanding a response from the Internet Gold board within seven days of the date his bid was filed, and, if it receives initial acceptance, he will enter into negotiations on the details of the bid, which the company will be required to approve by May 10.

Internet Gold owes its bondholders NIS 720 million, and it is effectively controlled by them. The company has conducted negotiations with several parties, among them US investment firm Searchlight Capital Partners, but no deal has been struck.

News of Zeevi's bid has sent Bezeq's share price soaring on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, by some 15%. B Communications is up 26%. 

Gad Zeevi tried to buy control of Bezeq in 1999, but failed to obtain approval from the Ministry of Communications. Zeevi, Mikhail Chernoy, Zeev Rom, and Adv. Michael Komisar were indicted on charges of having concealed the identity of the person behind the loan (Chernoy) that Zeevi received for the purposes of the proposed acquisition. All four were completely exonerated.

Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on April 8, 2019

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2019

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Gad Zeevi  photo: Eyal Izhar
Gad Zeevi photo: Eyal Izhar
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