Jewish Colonial Trust Shareholders Urged to Exchange Their Shares

Shareholders of the Jewish Colonial Trust throughout the world were urged to claim reimbursement as a result of JCT’s reconstruction. An announcement made public here today says that arrangements have been made whereby the Trust’s holding of the stock in Bank Leumi le-Israel was sold to a new Israel company styled Otzar Hityashvuth Hayehudim which has a structure entirely parallel to that of the JCT, payment being in the form of shares of the Israel company.

“The Trust has reduced its capital from shares of one pound to shares of two shillings and six-pence each, and is repaying this capital to its shareholders, not in cash., but by the distribution of five shares in the new Israel company for every share they hold in the Trust,” the announcement says, “These arrangements have gone through the various formal channels, including confirmation of the reduction of capital by the court in England, and the Trust’s shareholders should now claim their entitlement from the company. For each JCT share they send in they will thus receive five shares in the new Israel company, and they will remain the owners of one reduced share of two shillings and six pence in the JCT.

The necessary forms can be obtained from the secretaries of Otzar Hityashvuth Hayhehudim, Jewish Colonial Trust Ltd., either in London or Tel Aviv, or, as convenient, from the representative office of Bank Leumi le-Israel in New York, It is understood that the new Israel company, which will receive dividends on its Bank Leumistock, will pay regular dividends. Permission for quotation of the Otzar Hityashvuth Hayehudim stock on the Tel Aviv stock exchange will be requested.

The Jewish Colonial Trust, established by the World Zionist Organization in 1899 is the parent institution of Bank Leurni le-Israel, previously the Anglo-Palestine Bank. It ceased carrying on active banking business of its own in 1934. It was intended by Dr. Herzl to serve him as his main financial instrument in carrying through his political plans. The Zionist organization did not, however, develop in the direction which Dr. Herzl had intended and the Jewish Colonial Trust was forced to turn to ordinary banking business. It played, however, a role of vital importance in the development of Palestine through setting up an affiliation which under the successive names of the Anglo-Palestine Company, the Anglo-Palestine Bank and Bank Leumi le-Israel developed into the leading financial institution of Palestine and Israel.

In the year 1934 it was decided to give up all banking business and the Jewish Colonial Trust became a holding company, the main function of which was to form a firm link between the Zionist organization and the Bank Leumi le-Israel. During the last 20 years the Jewish Colonial Trust has written off all losses which it had sustained in its banking affairs and has, with the help of the Anglo-Palestine Bank, reconstructed the whole of its capital. It has, however, paid no dividends for many years as the whereabouts of most of its very numerous shareholders are unknown. Many of them have disappeared as a consequence of the two world wars, and many others have changed their places of residence without notifying the company. The business of the Anglo-Palestine Bank, which was an English company, was transferred some five years ago to Bank Leumi le-Israel a company incorporated in Israel.

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