Lev Leviev’s Africa Israel Investments lost a record $1.14-billion in 2008 and $642 million in the fourth quarter alone. He has the distiction of suffering the steepest loss recorded in Israeli business history.
A sign of just how bad things are for Lev is this piece of fevered wishful thinking via the Jerusalem Post:
“Signs of growing anti-Semitism in the world may act as a catalyst to apartment purchases in Israel by foreign residents, despite the economic crisis,” Africa Israel said in its quarterly report, posted on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange’s Web site Sunday.
Yeah, and the pope will change his name to Goldstein as well.
It remains to be seen what impact this might have on Leviev’s settlement building efforts in the West Bank or his funding of Chabad projects worldwide, but especially in Russia. At the very least, it will certainly put a damper on some of his bad habits, like stealing Arab land in East Jerusalem and building new settlements enabled by Israel’s Separation Wall land grab. Recently, a campaign by British peace activists moved the British government to cancel the move of its Tel Aviv embassy to Leviev’s flagship Tel Aviv high-rise. The London stock exchange is considering de-listing his company. Another set of blows against the injustices perpetrated by Leviev’s empire.
Lev Leviev is someone who has thrived in the high stakes world of diamond mining and real estate. Like another formerly wealthy right wing Jew, Sheldon Adelson, the global economic debacle has hit his highly leveraged and highly speculative empire hard. I can only hope that their financial misfortunes will force them to turn off the spigot for some of their worst anti-Arab ventures.
Whatever you do, don’t get your news about this story from JTA, which wrote thus:
The company lost $426 million in 2008, it announced Monday.
Africa Israel…had a net loss of $637 million in the fourth quarter.
I scratched my head for a few moments trying to figure out how a company can lose more in a single quarter of a year than it lost in the entire year. That would take some financial hocus pocus of Madoffian magnitude. I figured I better check out Haaretz which provided the correct figures that lead off this post. In other words, the $426 million figure is wrong. Who knows where it came from.
RE: “Lev Leviev’s Africa Israel Investments lost a record $1.14-billion in 2008”
BUT I THOUGHT DIAMONDS WERE A WHITE GIRL’S BEST FRIEND!
Nothing but good – let’s hope someone forecloses on those motgages.
Not contesting your numbers, but that’s easy: if they had a net gain of $211m in the first three quarters combined.
Richard Silverstein says
I should’ve thought of that but math was never my strong suit. But I DID do the Haaretz numbers before I published this & they’re ironclad. Leviev’s company surely didn’t have any gains in the previous quarters since they’ve been bleeding money hand over fist pretty much the entire yr. The Russian market is imploding & former billionaires are almost paupers (I exagerrate but only slightly). And he’s hugely exposed there.
Looks like the JTA numbers are all out of whack, but fiddler’s right about how a company can lose more in single quarter than it lost in the entire year, since fourth quarter losses are canceled out in the yearly balance sheet against any possible earlier gains. Of course, AFIL had losses in the other three quarters as well, so I don’t know what the JTA writer was smokin’.
It looks like AFIL’s got a bigger problem, since according to a Haaretz article in October 2008, its highly leveraged.
“Africa Israel features several hot points of trouble: exposure to real estate, business in Russia, eastern Europe and the U.S., and debts. Leviev has overcome crises before but the scope of this one is huge.
At the end of June 2008, Africa Israel’s shareholders equity totaled NIS 5.9 billion and it had NIS 38 billion worth of assets. Its enormous leverage, however, meant that for each NIS 1.00 in shareholders equity, it had borrowed NIS 5.50.”
I sure hope he isn’t in line for some of that “get out of hock, free” money the US taxpayers are dishing out to the banks and finance companies. Although I wouldn’t be surprised.
Marilyn Shepherd says
How much did Bernie Madoff make off with in the end? It seems that some of the victims of that character did not deserve to be treated so shabbily either.
Seeing that billionaires are going broke is not exactly breaking hearts all over the world – it was not real anyway.
2008 1st quarter net income +124,985 thousand NIS.
2008 2nd quarter figures not available (pdf file not found)
2008 3rd quarter net income -2,135,200 thousand NIS.
2008 9 first months net income -2,021,845 thousand NIS.
AFI Group doesn’t have yet the 2008 total figures on their pages. (No wonder)
2008 4th quarter net income -2.69 billion NIS
From the TASE pages
2008 12 months net income -4,947,225 thousand NIS (-1.17 billion USD)
Seems (concluded from the reports available) that the first quarter produced a tiny profit, second was about zero and after that a “catastrophe”.
You guys are so sad….. g-d the only one who owns anything in the world (actually the hole world ) gave the land of Israel to the people of Israel, so this is the only piece of land that has a owner THE JEWS beside any other place in the world has no relation to any one in particular……………and you guys like to cause problems for your people it self ……you are the worst enemy of the people of Israel………being happy that a guy like Lev Leviev a true hero of our times someone who gives charity for the needy all over the world, in proportions that no one else does because he gives with full heart and you re celebrating
thank G-d he´s so merciful and give you a chance to do teshuva (repentance) !!!
I wish you all a pessach kasher ve ssameach !leshana haba Byerushalim habenuia!!!