August 29, 2013 / 7:57 AM / 4 years ago

Israel Corp moves to Q2 loss on weak shipping unit

JERUSALEM, Aug 29 (Reuters) - Israel Corp, one of Israel’s largest holding companies, swung to a loss in the second quarter due to a narrower profit at its chemicals subsidiary and wider loss at its shipping unit.

Israel Corp said on Thursday it posted a net loss of $89 million in the April-June period, compared with an $84 million net profit a year earlier.

Shipping unit Zim, which has been hurt by tough economic conditions, recorded a loss of $97 million, versus a $47 million loss in the second quarter of 2012.

Israel Corp is also the parent of Israel Chemicals (ICL) , chipmaker TowerJazz and Oil Refineries , and holds a stake in Chinese-Israeli carmaker Qoros.

It also held a key stake in the Better Place electric car venture. Better Place, whose battery charging network had aimed to boost electric car sales, closed after losing more than $800 million since 2008.

In June, Israel Corp said it was considering splitting into two companies in a bid to attract a broader range of investors.

According to the move under consideration, Israel Corp will continue to hold ICL and Oil Refineries, while others would be held by a new company.

ICL, the world’s sixth-largest potash producer, posted a $316 million profit, down from $408 million a year earlier.

Oil Refineries, Israel’s biggest refinery, narrowed its loss in the second quarter, while TowerJazz widened its quarterly loss.

Qoros, a joint venture between Israel Corp and Chery Automobile Co posted a quarterly loss of $40 million, compared with $13 million a year earlier. (Reporting by Steven Scheer)

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