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Elsztain: We’re ready to move forward quickly

At yesterday’s press conference, Eduardo Elsztain said he would run IDB together with Nochi Dankner.

נוחי דנקנר אדוארדו אלשטיין

 Eduardo Elsztain                     Nochi Dankner

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“I just came from New York. We spent all of last week in meetings with Nochi. I decided that the best way to move forward is to come here, to Israel. Nochi called me and asked me to come, so I came, ” said Eduardo Elsztain at a joint press conference last night with IDB Holding Corp. Ltd. (TASE:IDBH) chairman Nochi Dankner.

This was his first appearance before the Israeli press and public in which he expressed his support for Dankner. “The purpose of the meeting is to make some clarifications and a brief presentation, ” said Elsztain. “I‘ve invested in Israel before. I came here with a strong desire to make a substantial investment in IDB. I’ve handled debt crises before in my career. When I heard about what was happening at IDB, I met with Dankner for over two hours, and we shared our experiences. At first I hadn’t decided on an investment, but it was absolutely clear to me that I would help. Last week, we became partners in IDB.
“We stand behind our intention to invest $75 million directly into IDB Holding, as we promised. IDB is a very strong company, financially speaking. We studied the business and we like it. We think that the Israeli economy is strong and I want to inject the capital immediately. Obviously, that does not just depend on us, but also on the court’s decision.”
Elsztain added, “We’re ready to move forward quickly, and we know that this is a very important week. The reason for my trip is simply to confirm that we’re ready to move forward. In my opinion, our offer is the only one which will bring new money into the company, and when a crisis happens, everyone wants to grab the best assets at a big discount. I told Nochi, the worst thing to do is to take the best assets for nothing.
“If we save this company, it will be good for the Israeli economy and Dankner. The company has assets which will help achieve this objective. It is in the interest of the Israeli economy for Dankner to continue to hold IDB. If our offer is accepted, it will also be good for us, for Dankner, and for the bondholders. The company’s assets are underpriced. Our offer is better, and if the bondholders do the math right, financially and rationally, they willaccept the offer.”
In response to a question by “Globes” about the nature of the $75 million investment, Elsztain said that it was a “group of investors” in which he was the lead investor. “The money is from a group of large investors, whose identities I will disclose after the court rules on the case, ” he said.
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