TEL AVIV, Israel, May 27 /PRNewswire/ -- Delek Group Ltd. (TASE: DLEKG.TA) (hereinafter: Delek Group or The Group) announced today reported its results for the three month period ending March 31, 2009. The full financial statements are available on Delek Group's website at:


- Strong increase in net income to NIS 157 million; Witnessed growth in most sectors compared to Q408 - Tamar-2 appraisal well drilling underway following commercial gas discoveries at Tamar and Dalit - Delek Group distributed the majority of Delek Real Estate as dividend in kind to shareholders at quarter end

Net income for the quarter reached NIS 157 million, a substantial improvement from the NIS 1.44 billion net loss in the fourth quarter 2008, and the full year 2008 loss net of NIS 1.8 billion. The Group presented a significant improvement in revenues and income across most sectors of activity compared with that of the last quarter. Growth was especially significant in the retail automotive sector, the finance sector, the fuel sectors in Israel, the United States and Europe, as well as in the refining.

Financial results for the first quarter of 2009 are the last results to fully consolidate the financial results of Delek Real Estate. On March 31, 2009, Delek Group announced the distribution of its Delek Restate Estate shares as dividend in kind to its shareholders. This follows the Company's Board of Directors' decision of October 2008, to distribute Delek Real Estate shares to its shareholders. This decision will further strengthen the Group's balance sheet, reducing consolidated financial debt from NIS 33 billion to NIS 18 billion.

Group revenues for the first quarter of 2009 amounted to NIS 9.5 billion, compared with NIS 7.3 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008. Gross profit in the first quarter of 2009 amounted to NIS 1.9 billion compared with NIS 1.1 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008.

Operating income from ongoing operations in the first quarter of 2009, amounted to NIS 673 million, a substantial improvement compared with the operating loss of NIS 956 million in the prior quarter. Group total assets as of March 31, 2009, amounted to NIS 94 billion, compared with NIS 76 billion as of December 31, 2008. Most of the increase resulted from the first-time consolidation of Excellence Investments.

Mr. Asaf Bartfeld, CEO of Delek Group, commented, Our diverse and sound portfolio of assets paired with our strong financial standing enabled us to present these strong results in the quarter. This success is visible in our return to profitability, especially noteworthy given the global macro environment.

Continued Mr. Bartfeld, Looking ahead, we believe that Delek Group has the foundations to overcome all upcoming challenges as well as the sound basis for maintaining profitability, generating cash and presenting continued success.

Main Business Highlights for the First quarter of 2008

Contribution of Principal Operations to Net income* (NIS millions)

Q1 2009 Q1 2008 Q4 2008 FY 2008 US Fuel Sector Operations (2) 1 (73) 1 Israeli Fuel Sector Operations 32 23 (20) 62 Delek Europe 3 11 (21) 44 Restructuring expenses at Delek Europe - - (81) (81) Oil and Gas Exploration (34) 33 6 65 Oil Exploration Expenses - (26) (28) (74) Automotive Operations 54 85 (12) 288 Insurance and Finance Operations 49 37 (326) (563) Increase (decrease) in the value of financial assets 5 (13) (67) (195) Capital Gains Others 55 13 10 (89) Net income (loss) excluding the Real Estate Activities 162 164 (612) (542) Real Estate activities (5) 30 (827) (1,267) Net income (loss) attributed to the 157 194 (1439) (1,809) Group's shareholders

* Parts of the above table have been extracted from Delek Group's First Quarter 2009 Directors Report. Please review the full report available on the Group's website to view the notes for each of the items above.

Energy Infrastructure

Delek USA (NYSE: DK; Delek Group holds 74% end-Q1 2009): Revenue in the first quarter for the year was NIS 1.5 billion, compared with NIS 2.8 billion in the fourth quarter of 2008. Net loss in the first quarter of 2009, excluding extraordinary items, amounted to NIS 2 million compared with a net loss of 102 million in the previous quarter.

In May 2009, Delek US completed the rebuilding of the unit damaged in the fire at the Tyler refinery in November 2008. Subsequently, the refinery resumed operation. In addition, the refinery took advantage of this down time to complete its periodic optimization and maintenance, previously planned for the fourth quarter of 2009.

Delek US is continuing its plans to upgrade its chain of convenience stores, and already close to 20% of the stores have undergone extensive overhaul, enabling Delek US to, on the one hand, focus on the sale of premium products, while, on the other hand, on the marketing of private label products due to economies of scale.

Delek - the Israel Fuel Company Ltd. (TASE: DLKIS.TA; Delek Group holds 84% end-Q1 2009): Revenue in the quarter amounted to NIS 856 million, compared with NIS 917 million in the previous quarter. Net income in the first quarter of 2009 amounted to NIS 37 million, compared with a loss of NIS 44 million.

As of March 31, 2009 the number of public fuel stations in Israel reached 233 and convenience stores numbered 115. During the first quarter, the company acquired two additional fuel station complexes, and signed a number of existing contracts to build additional stations.

Delek Europe. Revenues in the first quarter of 2009 amounted to EUR456 million, compared with EUR653 million in the prior quarter. During the quarter, Delek Europe recorded a profit of EUR1 million, compared with a loss of EUR21 million in the previous quarter.

The Oil and Gas Exploration, and Gas Production sector. In the first quarter, Delek's subsidiary announced the discovery of two commercial natural gas wells, and is in the process of drilling an appraisal well at the site of Tamar-2.

Oil and gas exploration activities contributed NIS 90 million of revenue compared with revenue of NIS 109 million in the prior quarter. The decrease was primarily due to lower sales of natural gas to the Israeli Electricity Corporation, resulting from lower public electricity consumption following temperate weather conditions in Israel.

Operating profit for the first quarter for this sector was NIS 34 million, as compared to operating profit of NIS 1 million in the prior quarter.

Automotive Operations

Delek Automotive Systems Ltd. (TASE: DLEA.TA; Delek Group holds 55.4% end-Q1 2009): The company maintained its market share of 24% in the Israeli car market by the exclusive import and marketing of the Mazda and Ford brands. Net income at Delek Automotive in the first quarter of 2009 reached NIS 90 million compared to a loss of NIS 20.7 million shekels in the prior quarter. The company's revenues totalled NIS 1 billion, compared with NIS 540 million in the prior quarter. The company's sales of cars reached 9500 units in the quarter, a significant increase compared with last quarter amounting to sales of 4,287 units.

Insurance and Financial Services

The activities of this segment are primarily conducted through Delek Capital, as well as two insurance companies; Israeli insurance company, Phoenix Holdings Ltd. (TASE: PHOE.TA), and general US insurer, Republic Companies, Inc. held through wholly-owned Delek Finance US Inc.

The insurance and financial services sector contributed NIS 49 million to the Group's net income in 2008, compared to a loss NIS 326 million in the fourth quarter of 2008. The positive results were due to the significant improvement in the capital market environment in Israel in the record quarter.

Dividend Distribution

On May 27, 2009, the Board of Directors of Delek Group declared a cash dividend distribution for the first quarter of 2009 in the amount of approximately NIS 72 million (NIS 6.349 per share) to the shareholders on record as of June 17, 2009. The ex-date is June 18, 2009 and the dividend will be paid on July 2, 2009.

Conference Call Details

The Company will be hosting a conference call in English on Monday, June 1st, 2009 at 10am ET, 3pm UK time and 5pm Israel time. On the call, CEO Asaf Bartfeld, CFO Barak Mashraki and Head of Investor Relations, Dalia Black, will review and discuss the results, and will be available to answer your questions.

To participate, please call one of the following teleconferencing numbers: US: 1-866-345-5855, UK: 0-800-404-8418, Israel: 03-918-0609.

About The Delek Group

The Delek Group is one of the leading, most prominent and dynamic investment groups in Israel. With investments on four continents, the Group is focused on investing in three main sectors. These are energy infrastructure; financial services; and automotives.

Contact Dalia Black Head of Investor Relations Delek Group Tel: +972-9-863-8444 Email: Kenny Green International Investor Relations GK Investor Relations Tel: (US) +1-646-201-9246 E-mail:

Contact: Dalia Black, Head of Investor Relations, Delek Group, Tel: +972-9-863-8444, Email:; Kenny Green, International Investor Relations, GK Investor Relations, Tel: (US) +1-646-201-9246, E-mail: