Benetton Israel franchise owners Dubi Shneidman and Eran Weizer are seeking a partner to inject cash into the chain, Calcalist has learned.
The Italian fashion chain's franchisees are currently holding talks with Gideon Moliov, who owns the MGS sporting goods chain and the Adidas and Diadora Israel franchise.
Over the past few days, Moliov and Shneidman have been holding meetings at the Benetton Group headquarters in Italy.
Benetton currently has just three stores in Israel:
At Dizengoff Center in Tel Aviv, at Rishon Lezion's Gold Mall and at the Ir Yamim Mall in Netanya – the latter of which is non-profitable.
Shneidman and Weizer initially planned to open
10-15 Benetton stores in Israel. Sources with knowledge of the company say that to that end, the company would need an investment of several millions of shekels.
If the two find a partner, Benetton will likely shut down its Netanya store and consider downsizing the other stores, in addition to opening more stores to strengthen the brand's sagging image in Israel.
Shneidman and Eran Weizer imported the brand with the expectation that its third round in Israel would be the lucky one. Benetton returned to Israel in 2011 after disappearing from the shelves here in the late 1990s.
Dubi Shneidman said in response to this report, "We are seeking a new partner for the chain."
This report was originally published in Hebrew