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Merrill Lynch Israel conference goers concerned with Pele-Phone results

Believe Yes is on the highway to top of multi-channel TV market in Israel

A delegation of Bezeq managers to a Merrill Lynch conference on Israeli companies heard great concern among foreign investors for Pele-Phone Communications forecasts and future results.

Foreign investors do not deem Yes satellite TV a bottomless pit, but think it is on the right track to establishing its position in Israel's multi-channel TV market.

Communication companies that attended the conference included Bezeq, Matav Cable Systems (Nasdaq:MATV) and Partner Communications (Nasdaq, TASE:PTNR, LSE:PCCD). More Israeli companies and foreign representatives were present at the conference than last year, and some believe the level of interest in Israel in general has gone up.

Pele-Phone, 50% Bezeq-owned, was a disappointment in Q3 2001, when it failed to meet expectations. Revenues in the quarter came to NIS 877.7 million, and net loss leaped to NIS 99.7 million.

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Pele-Phone's net loss in 2002 is estimated to top $60 million. Better results are expected in 2003.