Judge Eitan Orenstein rejected the claims of Nochi Dankner, who tried to convince the court that the transfer of control of the giant holding company from his hands was tainted by a conflict of interests. Orenstein stated that “his arguments are merely disingenuous.” The judge approved the creditors’ arrangement and determined that for now Eduardo Elsztain and Moti Ben-Moshe control the country’s largest corporation.
Eduardo Elsztain Photo Credit: Reuters
After a decade, businessman Nochi Dankner lost his holdings of IDB. The District Court of Tel Aviv today validated the creditor agreement, which stated that the giant corporation’s control will be turned over from Dankner to a former partner and now rival, Eduardo Elsztain, along with his partner Moti Ben-Moshe.
In the ruling, Justice Eitan Orenstein determined that the implementation of the decision is dependent upon Ben-Moshe providing more revelations about his business details within a week. Ben-Moshe welcomed the decision and said that the requirements of the court were reasonable. “This is an exciting moment, I thank the judge for the brave verdict. We moved on from the slander campaign, and on Sunday I was ready to present to the court the documents necessary to refute the baseless slanders of the Nochi Dankner group,” he said.
Dankner plans to appeal to the Supreme Court
The transfer of control over IDB is still far from reaching its official ending. Nochi Dankner intends to appeal the decision to the Supreme Court and to investigate a number of legal options. “I have not given up. I am still optimistic,” Dankner said after the decision . “I have not spoken the last word. I believe in the Israeli legal system and its decisions. The judge mandated the other team to reveal their actual shareholders and financial sources. I believe in justice and I believe that the company will remain in our hands.”
Through his reading of the verdict in court, Judge Eitan Orenstein dealt with Dankner’s claims and refuted them one after another. “The law of centralization turns out to be something that will make it difficult to realize the suggestion made by Nochi Dankner,” the judge said of the law that Dankner argues was specifically enacted for a case like his.
In fact, the “pyramid” of Dankner’s partner, Alexander Granovsky, through which the two of them both sought to regain control, does not meet the standards of the law of centralization. On the other hand , the law does not apply to Elsztain, because his “pyramid” is located abroad, which technically allows the transfer of control to him.
Judge Orenstein: Dankner’s claim “has no real substance.”
Judge Orenstein in his decision removed the option of dismantling the company for a debt settlement. “Dissolution will not solve the problems,” he explained. “Nothing prevents creditors from imposing order on the company at a time when the company is insolvent. The decision moving forward belongs to the creditors. Therefore Dankner’s claim that one cannot take away the company without consent, has no real substance.”
“The allegations have not been able to convince me to object to the creditor settlement,” Ornstein added in response to claims by Dankner who argued that Elsztain and Ben-Moshe were not transparent enough. “Dankner’s claims are merely disingenuous, especially since he checked Elsztain out himself when he was his business partner.”
Once Partners, Now Rivals
The decision comes after months of accusations between the former business partners who have recently become competitors. After a hearing earlier this week, Judge Orenstein questioned businessman Motti Ben Moshe, the partner suggested by Eduardo Elsztain to be responsible for his financial sources after he deposited with Elsztain more than half a billion shekels in good trust for a proposal to acquire IDB.
Ben-Moshe competed together with Eduardo Elsztain against the group of Nochi Dankner and Alexander Granovsky over the control of the company. Ben-Moshe swore to Judge Orenstein that, “I am the one in control of Extra Holding (from which the investment will be made). I’m not in control of it for someone else, and I have evidence supporting this.”