The rich and the powerful

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The central bank estimates that 20 leading business families control one in four listed companies.

Nochi Dankner

Often viewed as the most powerful businessman in Israel. Mr Dankner is the controlling shareholder of IDB Holdings, which owns stakes in Clal Insurance and mobile phone group Cellcom. He also has a stake in Makhteshim-Agan Industries, one of the world’s largest makers of generic crop protection products, and a subsidiary that owns nearly 3 per cent of Swiss bank Credit Suisse.

Yitzhak Tshuva

Controls the Delek Group, whose subsidiaries have interests in real estate, energy, infrastructure, insurance and telecommunications. Mr Tshuva’s most prominent investments include New York’s Plaza Hotel as well as a 31 per cent holding in Tamar, a natural gas field.

The Ofer family

The Ofers control Israel Corp, whose shareholdings include the Zim shipping company and chip-maker TowerJazz. They also have stakes in Oil Refineries, an energy company, and Israel Chemicals.

Lev Leviev

Has been Israel’s most high-profile victim of the global financial crisis, although he still controls Africa-Israel, a real estate company. Mr Leviev is also the world’s largest cutter and polisher of diamonds.

Shari Arison

Israel’s richest woman, whose fortune was estimated by Forbes magazine this year at $3.4bn (€2.7bn, £2.3bn), is the heiress to her late father’s cruise operator, Carnival Cruise Lines. Ms Arison is a shareholder in Bank Hapoalim, the country’s second-largest lender by assets, as well as in one of Israel’s biggest construction companies.

Fishman family

Their businesses include real estate firms, Jerusalem Economy Ltd and Industrial Buildings Corporation.

Nimrodi family

They have shareholdings in the real estate and media industries, including in Maariv, one of Israel’s top circulation newspapers.

Borowitz family

They control Knafaim Holdings, a tourism and aviation services company.

Akirov family

They control Alrov, a real estate development company which manages luxury residential towers in Israel, including one in Tel Aviv in which Ehud Barak, the defence minister, owns an apartment.

Federman family

Their most important stake is in Elbit Systems, an Israeli defence contractor.

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