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Deal Gone Bad

Gaydamak: Didn't bring home the bacon Photo: Michael Kramer
Gaydamak: Didn't bring home the bacon Photo: Michael Kramer
 
Amit Berger
Amit Berger 
 
Kobi Tribitch
Kobi Tribitch 
 
 

Gaydamak, Tiv Ta'am deal falls through

Billionaire's plans to make Tiv Ta'am kosher fall short; purchase called off

Tani Goldstein
Published: 06.18.07, 18:05 / Israel Business

Billionaire Arcadi Gaydamak will not purchase the controlling share of the Tiv Ta'am supermarket chain as announced last week.

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The deal was called off due to difficulties in turning the chain kosher and the refusal of Kobi Tribitch and Amit Berger, the current owners, to knock off $10 million from the price as Gaydamak requested.

 

Kobi Tribitch objected to any reduction in the price and discontinued communications with Gaydamak. Berger, Tribitch's partner, was less unyielding.

 

According to the original agreement Gaydamak was to pay $100 million for 51 percent of the Tiv Ta'am supermarket chain, 80 percent higher than its value on the stock exchange.

 

Gaydamak caused uproar among the public when he announced that he would stop the chain from selling pork and would close it on Shabbat. He also said that he would make Mizra, the factory that produces pork products for the chain, supply chicken instead of pork.

 

Impossible to turn Tiv Ta'am kosher

Some analysts believe that after signing the contract, Gaydamak realized that as most of Tiv Ta'am's customers shop there because it was not kosher, turning the Tiv Ta'am chain and the Mizra factory kosher would be in fact impossible.

 

Gaydamak also discovered that Mizra had a contract with Tiv Ta'am that prevented the chain from changing the Mizra character and making it sell chicken instead of pork.

 

Gaydamak therefore requested a $10 million discount from the original $100 million sum agreed upon.

 

This was turned down and, instead, an alternative agreement was reached: Gaydamak will purchase 10 percent of the Anter Holdings company, owned by Amit Berger and which holds 38 percent of Tiv Ta'am, for NIS 30 million ($7.222 million), at NIS 61.37 ($14.7797) per share.

 

Two million dollars of the sum will be transferred to Kobi Tribitch for canceling the deal. Gaydamak will eventually indirectly own a little less than four percent of Tiv Ta'am and will have no control over the chain.

 

Trading of Anter Holdings' and Tiv Ta'am's stock was stopped after the deal was called off.

 

Tribitch refused to comment while Gaydamak was unavailable.

 

Orna Yefet contributed to the report

 

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