Israel mobile: Cellcom buying out workers; Partner gets sharing OK

|By:, SA News Editor

Israel wireless firm are lower today: Cellcom (NYSE:CEL) is off 3.6% and peer Partner Communications (NASDAQ:PTNR) is trading 4.3% lower. Bezeq (OTCPK:BZQIY) is lower in over-the-counter trading, -2.2%.

The moves follow Cellcom declining 1.2%, Partner slipping 1.6%, and Bezeq trading down 1.2% in Tel Aviv.

Cellcom employees have agreed to a second voluntary retirement program in the past 12 months. In the first program, 200 employees retired; the number is expected to be higher this time around.

Partner says the Ministry of Communications has approved a network sharing arrangement it entered into with Hot Mobile. With the Antitrust Commissioner approving the deal last May, Partner says the deal is the first sharing agreement to get both approvals.

A joint venture between Partner and Hot Mobile will operate the network, meaning the companies will reduce the number of network sites to reduce overlap.

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