Israeli businessman Bino in talks to sell Paz Oil stake -report

JERUSALEM Sun May 4, 2014 10:39am EDT

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JERUSALEM May 4 (Reuters) - Israeli businessman Zadik Bino is in talks with three groups to sell his controlling stake in Paz Oil, Israel's largest distributor of refined oil products, for 2 billion shekels ($579 million), TheMarker financial news website said on Sunday.

TheMarker said Bino was negotiating with a group of U.S. investors and two Israeli ones.

Bino and Paz were not immediately available for comment.

Bino, through Bino Holdings, owns a 38.5 percent controlling share of FIBI Holdings, which holds 48.3 percent of First International. Bino Holdings also owns 33.1 percent of Paz.

Paz has a market value of 5.5 billion shekels, while First International has a market capitalisation of 5.6 billion.

As part of a new law designed to promote competition and dilute the power of big business in Israel, Bino must either sell Paz, where he serves as chairman, or First Israel Bank of Israel, Israel's fifth-largest bank.

The new law passed late in 2013 year bars conglomerates and investors from holding financial firms with assets of more than 40 billion shekels at the same time as non-financial businesses with more than 6 billion shekels of revenue.

($1 = 3.4560 Israeli Shekels) (Reporting by Steven Scheer)

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