January 21, 2018 / 8:15 AM / a year ago

Three banks agree to sell stakes in Tel Aviv bourse before IPO

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Three of Israel’s leading banks have agreed to sell back shares in the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange ahead of the bourse’s planned initial public offering.

The exchange had offered to buy out its shareholders, comprised of commercial and investment banks, before it lists on its own market next year, valuing the total shares at 500 million shekels ($146 million).

Bank Leumi (LUMI.TA), Israel’s second largest lender, said it agreed to sell its entire 9.3 percent stake in the bourse, adding that the transaction would have minimal impact on its finances.

The First International Bank of Israel FTIN.TA, the country’s fifth biggest bank, which holds the largest stake of around 20 percent, said it would sell back 15.4 percent.

Smaller rival Bank of Jerusalem (JBNK.TA) said it would sell its entire 5.39 percent stake.

The exchange demutualized and became for-profit in September as part of a plan to boost trading volumes and company listings.

Reporting by Ari Rabinovitch; Editing by Tova Cohen

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