Moshe "Muzi" Wertheim
Was an Israeli businessman who held controlling interests in companies in the fields of food, communications, real estate, and banking. Notable among these were the Central Bottling Company, the Israeli franchise of Coca-Cola, Bank Mizrahi-Tefahot, and the Channel 2 television network.
Moshe Wertheim was born in Jerusalem into a religious household. Until the age of 15, he studied in a yeshiva. At 17, he enlisted in the Palmach, a paramilitary organization in pre-state Israel.
After completing his service in the Israel Defense Forces, he pursued a bachelor's degree in law from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. During his studies, he specialized in corporate law and simultaneously pursued a second degree in business administration at the same university. Wertheim worked for the university and served as the station manager for the Hebrew University's facilities in Switzerland and Italy.
In 1965, he left academia and began working for the pharmaceutical company Asio, where he served as the finance and export manager.
In 1967, along with Abraham Feinberg, a Jewish-American businessman, he played a pivotal role in establishing the Israeli franchise of Coca-Cola, the Central Bottling Company. He served as the CEO of the company from 1973 to 1980 and later as its president from 1980 onwards. In 2001, following Feinberg's passing, he acquired Feinberg's shares in the company.
In the mid-1990s, Wertheim acquired a stake in Channel 2, the Keshet broadcasting network. After purchasing a significant share and later acquiring Ilan Shiloah's stake, he held a majority ownership, approximately 51%, in the network.
In 1993, he was awarded the Industry Prize in the food category.
In 1994, Wertheim acquired about 26% of Bank Mizrahi-Tefahot's shares. In 1997, he purchased an additional 25% in collaboration with the Ofer brothers. Subsequently, he held 20% of Bank Mizrahi-Tefahot, which also controlled Adanim Mortgage Bank.
Wertheim owned real estate in the Herzliya Marina, shares in the offshore oil exploration company Yam Suf, holdings in the investment company Zinger-Brandes, and the Red Sea Radio station in Eilat, among others. He also held a 25.5% stake in the Aloni Hatzeaka real estate company and was involved in Berger Holdings, which controlled the DASH brokerage firm, one of Israel's largest private brokerages.
In 2004, through the Central Bottling Company, Wertheim acquired Terra, a producer of dairy products.
In December 2005, Wertheim used his influence at Channel 2 to delay the broadcast of an investigative report within the program "Fact" that covered an incident nearly resulting in an accident involving an Israir aircraft, at the request of Nochi Dankner, who owned the airline at the time. Following this, he published an article in Yedioth Ahronoth, claiming that it was an error on the part of Channel 2 to acquire "Fact."
In November 2012, Wertheim was appointed temporary chairman of Bank Mizrahi-Tefahot, replacing Yaakov Perry, who joined the Yesh Atid political party.
Wertheim served as the chairman of the "Know the Truth" association, which received donations from the Central Bottling Company.
He was a member of the Likud Central Committee, but according to investigations, he was also close to Ariel Sharon, Ehud Olmert, Yaakov Perry, and Ehud Barak. He had contributed to the election campaigns of Ehud Barak and the Labor Party in the past.
Wertheim was married and had two children. In his later years, he resided in the Sea and Sun complex in northern Tel Aviv.
1. "Moshe (Muzi) Wertheim," Palmach Archive.
2. Asnat Kotan, "I Am Not a Decoration," NRG, April 8, 2005.
3. Ronit Morgensztern, "The Black Gold of Moshe Wertheim," NRG, May 7, 2008.
4. Ilanit Hayot, Lior Avrach, and Tali Tsipori, "Moshe Wertheim: From the Mossad to the Summit of Israeli Wealth," Globes, January 16, 2012.
5. Eran Azran, Ora Korn, "Moshe Wertheim, Owner of Coca-Cola and Mizrahi Bank, Dies at 86," TheMarker, August 31, 2016.
6. Naama Sikuler, "From Coins to Coca-Cola: The Tycoon Who Didn't Want a Private Jet," Calcalist, September 1, 2016.
* Moshe Wertheim: Involved in Channel 2 Decisions, TheMarker, July 3, 2008.
* Nati Tucker, "Netanyahu's Confidential Man Received Half a Million Shekels from Wertheim's Inactive Association," TheMarker, February 29, 2016.
* Hadas Magen and Shlomit Len, "How Moshe Wertheim Tries to Prevent Future Inheritance Battles Among His Children," Globes, April 4, 2013.