Motorola bid for Feuchtwanger gets staff's thumbs-down

By Haim Bior

Feuchtwanger Industries' employee union yesterday informed the company's interim manager and the Histadrut Metal Workers Labor Federation that the staff opposes chipmaker Motorola's bid to buy the troubled company.

Labor reps Mickey Simon and Itai Ha'elyon, representing Feuchtwanger's 850 employees, said that Motorola Israel refused to meet with the union. The union leadership had initiated meetings with all bidding companies to ensure that workers' rights would not be harmed.

"It is clear to the employees that Feuchtwanger Industries' acquisition by anyone unwilling to maintain workers' rights will lead to the company's eventual liquidation and transfer of its activities to the buyers, leaving hundreds of Feuchtwanger staff unemployed," union leadership said yesterday. "The union will recommend the court choose the buyer that signs the letter of intent to preserve employee rights."

The union said that a group led by businessman Shlomo Shmeltzer and one headed by the Dankner family's Urdan Industries have said they are willing to sign the document.

Feuchtwanger Industries is one of several companies that were part of the recently collapsed Peled-Givony financial pyramid. Former chief of police Rafi Peled, businessman Arieh Givony and consultant Tal Jaegerman bought a number of publicly traded companies over the past year using bank credit to finance higher-than-market purchase prices.

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