Startup Nation Critical Canvas
Darori Capital with the Darori Foundation have committed have committed time and money to canvass the Israeli Government to open the doors to job opportunities in the Start Up nation of skilled High Tech Head Count who are not Jewish. The Shimon Peres Peace Center in Jaffa have also thrown their brand name in to this canvassing. Unfortunately the Center has new management and are still sorting out the gross mismanagement of the previous 4-5 years and we are niggling at Shimon Peres to make pubic his support.. he definitely does but also where the cap of the “who is a Jew” issue and the extensive use of “Jew ” and “Jewish” in the Declaration of Independence ( and this is Netanyahu problems as well) . We are not saying that they should be able in the long run to become citizens ( like Marc Zukerman is pushing in the US) but rather they should be given long terms opportunities to work in the Start Up Nation. We realize we are up and at the Concrete Barrier of Precedent and one of the most embedded principles from the Declaration of Independence but the Innovative Start Up nation are adding startups in threshold technologies like the Cloud and Bid Data far, far, far faster that the Academia in Israel can possible supply Israel Cloud and Big Data Specialist and capita . We already have Naftali Bennet in our corner and most of the people that Yair Lapid relies on. We haven’t got to Lapid yet but that is a no brainer ( sorry about the double pun) but Lapid is getting an education experience and while getting hammered in public ratings is not inhibiting him introducing radical change or shying away from painful decision making. You have to give him some kudos.. The two most influential Ministers in our corner but not publically as they certainly must wear other caps as well , are Gideon Sa’ar and Binyamin Netanyahu . Neither of them can say Yay until we have a lot more support but one of the other sponsors has had multiple conversations with Yaacov Neeman who says that the legislation to allow 10,000 even 100,000 high tech Indian and Berkley and Stanford Grads to come and work in Zion , is relatively easy but the real problem is ironically accommodation in the Mercaz . It is apparently incredibly difficult finding a flat for rental in Tel Aviv now and very expensive..
Until now we have been canvassing in stealth mode but have starting going to the market and opening the issue but walking on egg shells .I expect to have punches thrown at me but not to be kicked in the hmmm
If you really want to understand how severe this problem is . Open a new Facebook account and join all the Israeli Job pages , plus things like Israel Lovers ( very active and Tel Aviv Secrets etc) and then watch what happens especially at its peak on a Saturday night. People ( very, very many unique Facebookers) post job vacancies in Israel ( largely in the White City of Tel Aviv) at a rate that is so fast , I can’t even read the postings. What happens if you define privacy levels as “avaible to everyone “, every time someone posts , it will with 2 other messages, appear on your screen,. When the 4th message is posted, the oldest of the 3 disappears and it happens so quickly, that no one can possibly read the messages on the screen before they dissappear. Obviously you can on the Facebook page read the message it was posted to. So in this respect , Facebook is now a great disruptive technology in the Recruitment Sector in Zion ( Israel) .Startups are now recruiting directly through Facebook and 2500 ( personally think the number is closer to 5000) independent recruiting personnel have effectively been cut out of the picture and quite frankly posting to Facebook is far more efficient and cuts out all the bullshit of independent recruiting personnel “due diligence” screening. The startup themselves are the best at deciding whether an applicant is a possible match or not. You can’t for, example , theoretically walk into a Big Data position , you will have to go through a learning experience in the beginning and given the high techies shortage in Zion, Big Data companies , are giving recent graduates that learning experience ..
I probably will be at the Cuikerman- Catalyst. I think their position really “sucks” in advocating and recommendation that the resources of Zionist Zion be diverted to the non=Jewish Diaspora . If for example India, Russia , France even Lithuania ( 17 starts pitched at the DLD Innovation Tel Aviv Summit on the 16th October 2013) have an interesting technology, don’t finance it abroad, displace it to the White City Na Startup Nation and nail the development of the technology in Zion which brings me back to the “Startup Nation Critical Canvas”
- In Tel Aviv’s Silicon Wadi, the focus is on brain gain (timesofisrael.com)
- With 5,000 Startups, Tel Aviv Is Edging Into the Tech Spotlight (mashable.com)
- Tel Aviv’s start-up DNA, as seen from abroad (timesofisrael.com)
- The 20 Hottest Startups in Israel (mashable.com)
- Tel Aviv: Hotbed of Startup Culture and Money (inc.com)
Incentives for Industrial R&D in ISRAEL (israel Economy at a glance)
1. The Chief Scientist Site list new programs and contact names for most programs listed in this section. Overview with tabs is: http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/625D5C08-9096-4B88-BAEF-09E7CC0E19A9.htm
2. The Chief Scientist Brochure listed below is also very good:http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/rdonlyres/BB679C54-573C-407C-A382-BC386AAC3916/0/OCSBrochure2006.pdf
3. Technology Infrastructure Enhancement – Magnet, Contact: Ilan Peled. Ph 03-511-8110: Promotes technological transfer from academic institutions to industry via musal cooperation between an industrial company and an academic research group. Project’s budget is up to 800,000 US$ Grants are up to 66% of approved budget. http://www.magnet.org.il/default.asp?id=1
4. Technology Infrastructure Enhancement-Noffar, Designed to support applied academic research in biotechnology & nanotechnology in order to adjust it to relevant applications in the industry and promotes the transer of these technologies to the idustry; Project budge is up to 100,00 US $, Gransts are up to 90% of the approved budget.
5. Pre Seed- Technological Incubators, contact at Chief Scientist: Rina Pridor Ph 03-511-8127: Provides support for nascent companies to develop their innovative technological ideas and form new business ventures in order to attract private investors. Grants up to 85% of approved budget.www.incubators.org.il
6. Pre Seed – Seed Fund Heznek Program– Contact: Itamar Dar Ph 02-666-2457: The Government Seed fund. The slowdown of the world economy has cased a decrease in the level of investments in start-up companies and consequently a lessening in the number of start-up companies formed. The program is based on the government matcing and investment in a start up company. Proportional to the investment of an investing entity and giving an option to the investor to purchase the government shares in the start up company at the initial price.http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/2F9931BD-7695-4FAD-9A54-950A1E99B3F8.htm also at:www.moital.gov.il
7. Competitive R&D, Approved R&D program Contact: Moshe Haizler Ph: 02-666-2516Approved R&D program must last at least one year, and should lead to the development of a new product or a significant improvement to an existing product. Grants are up to 50% of the total approved R&D expenditures. The annual budget of 230 million is spent on 775 projects being undertaken by 500 companies. The site breaks it into A. Development of a novelity product and B R&D support for companies in Special Geographical areas. http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/625D5C08-9096-4B88-BAEF-09E7CC0E19A9.htm also at:www.moital.gov.il/madan
8. Pre Competitive R&D, Magnet Consortium, Supports the formation of consortia maade up of industrial companies and academic insititutions, in order to jointly develop generic, pre competitve technologies. Grants up to 66% of approved budget for industry and up to 80% for the academic institution. http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/111E3D45-56E4-4752-BD27-F544B171B19A.htm also at:www.magnet.org.il
9. Pre Competitive R&D, Katamon: Promote water techology projects by tripple cooperation between industrial company, acedemic research group and water infrastructure program; Project budget up to US$1M. http://www.israel-industry-trade.gov.il/NR/exeres/D8C128E3-63D8-441B-86BE-844011126452.htm?wbc_purpose=B
10. Pre Competitive R&D, Research Institutes: Contact: Shaul Freireich Ph 02-666-2490: Supports R&D programs carried out by Research Institutes Grants up to 90% of approved budget.www.moital.gov.il/madan
11. Pre Competitive R&D, Generic R&D, Contact Lydia Lazens Ph 02-666-2465 Encourages companies heavily in R&D to invest a seginficant percentage of funds in long term generic R&D Grants up to 50% of the approved budget. http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/111E3D45-56E4-4752-BD27-F544B171B19A.htm
12. A wonderful overview of the Chief Scientis is available in a pdf file titled: The Intellectual Capital of the State of Israel. http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/rdonlyres/C973239E-F6C2-453A-A4D9-5A30F59258E3/0/intellectualcapital.pdf
13. Pre Competitive R&D, R&D Centers in Universites, aims to create and develop techological infrastructure for industry use. Russel Berrie Institutes for Nanotechnology at Technion,http://rbni.technion.ac.il/ :National Institute for Biotechnology Research and Development in the Negev Ben Gurion in Be’er Sheva. http://www.atp-israel.com/bgu/nibn.html
14. International Programs: Multinationals, Matimop, Contact: Yair Amitay/ Haya Miller Ph 03-511-8111: Promotes and assists participation of Israeli companies in international bilateral or multilateral cooperation programs for industrial R&D. Maintains updated database of prjects in many advanced technologies and databse of profiles of Israeli industrial companies seeking international cooperation. http://www.matimop.org.il/
15. International Programs: Europe’s R &D Framework Agreement –ISERD Contact: Marcel Shaton Ph 03-511-8123: Israel is the only non-European country fully associated with EU framework program for Research and Development. The Program offers Israeli companies and research organizations an opportunity to participate in jointly implemented projects with European counterparts. www.iserd.org.il
16. International Programs: Eureka: Contact: Udo Mannes Ph 03-511-811 #31: Currently Israeli companies take part in more than 10% of all running Eureka programs. 40% of Eureka project participants are small/medium enterprises (SME) including start up companies.http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/exeres/8A8D7E70-9BDB-4A4D-B07C-F0100E5E603E.htm also atwww.eureka.org.il
17. International Programs: Program for the Encouragement of Multi-National CompaniesProject Centers in Israel. The program encourages Multi-National Companies to conduct joint R&D Projects with an Israeli partner while focusing the activity in the national preference zones and/or in tradtional industries. http://www.moital.gov.il/NR/rdonlyres/771C3A08-2723-436B-B285-1C0CB178EE55/0/MultiNationalCompaniespptnew.PDF
18. International Programs: The Global Enterpriese R&D Cooperative Framework –GIRDF Contact:Yifat Turbiner: Ph 03-511-8116; This program attracts prominent multinational corporations (MNC) to forge investment cooperation deals with Israeli Start-ups. www.moital.gov.il/madan
19. Bi-National funds: Grants up to 50% of R&D expenses Fund Name countries:
- BIRD Israel- USA (www.birdf.com)
- BRITECH Israel – UK (www.britech.org)
- CIIRDF Israel – Canada ( www.ciirdf.ca)
- KORIL-RDF Israel- Korea (www.koril-rdf.or.kr)
- SIIRD Israel –Singapore (www.siirdf.com)
20. Bi-Nationals: Bi-Lateral R&D Programs Matimop, Contact: Yair Amitay/ Haya Miller Ph 03-511-8111: the Israeli Industry Center for R&D operates international R&D agreements on behahf OCS with numerous European countries, South merica, China, Russia, Canada, and Australia.http://www.matimop.org.il/
21. Bi-Nationals: US-Israel Science & Technology Commission. The commission focuses on Life Sceinces, Clean Technology, Homeland Security, Aerospace, Renewed Energy, Water Technology, and Personalized Healthcare. http://www.usistc.org/fs_index.asp
- Budgeting (creditrepair.com)
- Goodbye Junction – Welcome Good Old Basement (tapreason.com)
- Trying to get pregnant (crazytanker76.wordpress.com)
- Understanding The Startup Investment Process (businessinsider.com)
- 2013 Canadian Startups Landscape Analysis: Full of US VCs and Still Low Investments (Mattermark Data Analysis) (startupmanagement.org)
- Customer Discovery Profile #11 – Skip Simms, Managing Member at Michigan Angel Fund (thesearchlite.com)
- New Brunswick announces $5 million start-up fund to help new companies (canadianbusiness.com)
- Start up companies and importance of channels and alliances (rajeevkhurana.wordpress.com)
- Transferencia de tecnoloxia e fomento do emprendemento biotecnologico en israel (slideshare.net)
- SparkLabs Unveils $30 Million Seed Fund (inc.com)
Have always been agreat Royalist.
When you’ve spent months intensively researching a cover story, it feels like a release to write. I tried to explain this to the Prince of Wales. “I’m looking forward to not thinking about you all the time,” I blurted. But writing brings the fresh pain of making choices, sacrificing fun facts and revealing anecdotes you just can’t squeeze in to your main text.
Here, rescued from the metaphorical cutting room floor, are 10 such details that deserve a proper heiring.
1. He’s fit. Several of the Prince’s friends complained about the difficulties of keeping up with him when they go hiking together. At 64, he’s still always king of the mountain, arriving at the highest peak first. He suffers from a bad back, but to alleviate the symptoms gets up early every morning to perform a rigorous series of exercises. “Occasionally in the Royal Train you hear a frightful…
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Digital Showcase: 17 Companies to Know
Stephen Darori in Zion
Opportunities abound for emerging and established enterprises looking to make or maintain their virtual mark. Industry trade shows like SES, eTail, Conversion Conference, IRCE and many others, offer unparalleled opportunities to educate yourself on emerging trends, technologies and talk, in general, but they are also a fantastic mechanism to drive brand awareness and rub elbows with those who have the ability to help you grow your business, whether it be through partnerships or press.
Website Magazine attended IRCE this week in our hometown of Chicago and brought back 17 companies (or news items) that caught our virtual eye in this digital showcase.
One of the more interesting companies was that of Needle, a live chat/sales “guided shopping” platform for big retailers that leverages vendors’ brand advocates. Needle helps retailers recruit and train those advocates who receive rewards and payouts based on the quality of their participation. Needle counts Overstock.com, Norwegian Cruise Line and Coach and others as clients currently.
Website Magazine covered Feedvisor in late May and it was well received at the time by our readers, and the same can be said for its presence at IRCE. The algorithmic repricing solution for Amazon, which is currently in use by brands such as American Greetings, will be very appealing to Internet retailers of all budgets interested in optimizing their advertising spend at the popular marketplace.
Maximizing ad spend has been a hot topic this year and numerous companies have built solutions to help Web retailers do exactly that. WisePricer’s is a unique solution Website Magazine encountered that enables retailers to track, monitor and gain insights about their competitors in order to determine an optimal pricing strategy.
Email marketing service Listrak was busy at IRCE showcasing its e-commerce-based platform for Internet retailers.
Listrak’s solutions run deep and include those for acquisition and engagement, post-purchase and re-engagement, life cycle management and segmentation.
Interactive product personalization platform Doogma is certainly a service that will appeal to startup merchants looking to add interactivity into the purchase process, enabling buyers to visualize products before they buy based on their design preference matched with the Web retailers offering.
Days after Salesforce purchased ExactTarget, SAP announced that they have acquired Hybris Software, a popular provider of e-commerce technology for both B2B and B2C segments, featuring management of content, orders and data from the platform, as well as powerful search and merchandising features.
AT&T and IBM teamed up to offer the e-commerce suite that will provide a convenient service in a single, subscription-based package with features including predictable monthly pricing and integrated software licensing.
This payment format differentiates this product from others by eliminating the up-front licensing fees typical to e-commerce solutions. Also key to mid-size retailers, and their bottom lines, is the scalability of the website and application hosting to meet their changing promotional and seasonal needs.
RetailMeNot.com is enjoying fantastic growth, as according to a recent review of comScore’s monthly unique visitor data, RetailMeNot.com ranked as the 25th most visited retail website. Categories in the review included coupon, retail and travel websites.
At IRCE 2013, BrightTag showcased its products including BrightTag Tag Management and BrightTag FUSE, its omni-channel data integration platform. BrightTag’s team of marketing and analytics experts were onsite to offer event attendees consultative advice on how to drive their business with better data.They also announced three tips for driving online results: embrace your customer’s multi-device world, take data quality seriously and think real-time with your data strategy.
Web hosting tends to be one of those topics that no one ever thinks about until they need it. A new breed of hosting companies is emerging fortunately that are committed/dedicated to serving the e-commerce market, and more specifically users of specific platforms – like the popular Magento solution. Simple Helix is one such provider that is quickly making its market in the
Internet retailers are very concerned about payment fraud but some fascinating companies are emerging, such as Signifyd, to minimize the problem and impact. Signifyd uses real-time, big data, relationship graph analysis that reveals and scores information from various sources (e.g. social, geo, address, phone, names, airports, cards) to simplify the often complex but important decision about whether transactions should be reviewed by an agent.
If you’re in e-commerce, you’re likely dealing with eBay or using one of its service in some capacity. Ebay was present showcasing numerous offerings including the Magento platform, Paypal and GSI-Commerce.
Sam Collin of the rapidly growing customer service measurements and ratings provider STELLAService spoke about a recent deal with none other than Google in which the search engine monolith will be paying STELLAService to license its customer service ratings to include alongside product listings in Google Shopping. For those unfamiliar with STELLAService, it’s a company that tests and then rates the customer service performance of a variety of online retailers and businesses by stress testing more than 300 different elements of a customer’s online experience, and then seeing how companies from various industries stack up against one another.
ModCloth is continuing to push its unique social media strategy as it slowly takes over the world of online apparel retail. By leveraging all of the key social networks that aren’t just Facebook and Twitter, including Tumblr, Pinterest and Instagram, the company is able to share their unique and fashionable products and interact with consumers through a variety of online touch points. But the real crux of ModCloth’s built-in social media strategy is the company’s ability to integrate user feedback and images into their business, sometimes going so far as to use pictures of customers modeling their products or allowing customers to write copy for a product by asking them questions like, “How would you describe this?”
This e-commerce platform helps brands expand their business to the global market. The platform deals with global logistics, duty and sales tax obstacles, as well as screens all international customers to prevent fraudulent orders. In fact, Bongo International boasts a 0.0 percent fraud rate since the company first launched in 2007, and also ships orders to almost anywhere in the world within five days. Merchants can choose from three different solutions, which typically work with all shopping platforms.
This e-commerce marketing software helps merchants increase their traffic and visibility on more than 70 comparison shopping sites and affiliate networks. The platform can be leveraged to automate datafeed submissions and optimize product listings. In fact, GoFeedData provides merchants with feed optimization tips, as well as offers an instant validation tool that tells users if their data needs to be adjusted before going live on shopping channels. Plus, GoDataFeed provides analytics, which track merchants’ best performing shopping sites and products, and measures a campaigns overall success.
E-commerce widget provider Ecwid has teamed up with popular website builder WIX to offer an e-commerce extension within the WIX App Market. While the app has only been live for about two weeks, it has already seen approximately 1,000 sign-ups in that period. The free app not only allows users to add a secure shopping cart to their WIX site, but to their Facebook Page and mobile site as well.
- Feedvisor gets $1.7M to bring dynamic pricing to Internet retailers (venturebeat.com)
- Feedvisor gets $1.7M to bring dynamic pricing to Internet retailers (soshitech.com)
- Listen Up E-Retailers! The Top 5 Ways To Lure and Keep Shoppers (shoretelsky.com)
- Report: Only 45% Of Top 100 Internet Retailers Employ Tag Management Systems (marketingland.com)
- ShopSocially Joins Demandware LINK to Accelerate Social Commerce (thesocialcommerceblog.com)
- Market America | SHOP.COM Named Fastest-Growing Mobile Merchant for 2013 (virtual-strategy.com)
- New Staples.com website launched by office supply giant (boston.com)
- Walmart Plans To Open Up To 110 New Stores In China By 2016 (huffingtonpost.com)
- ShopThis Lets You Buy Stuff, Straight from the Pages of Digital Magazines (ohgizmo.com)
- Mobile Shoppers Now Spend $1 Trillion Online (business2community.com)
As a small country in a hostile neighborhood, Israel must strive to maintain a qualitative military edge over her potential enemies. Experience in a series of wars has taught Israel that she needs to develop that edge independently as far as she can. In large part, Israel’s high-tech industries are a spin-off from that process.
Israel fought the 1967 Six Day War largely with French weaponry. When President de Gaulle imposed an arms embargo after that war, Israel turned to the United States, and to herself. The commercial consequences can be seen today. Blades Technology, for example, a company originally set up to manufacture engine parts for the Israel Air Force’s Mirage aircraft, now has annual sales of $90 million, and joint ventures with Pratt & Whitney and Rolls Royce.
In the 1973 Yom Kippur War, Israel was surprised by the technological capabilities of her enemies, and also experienced difficulty in obtaining vital materiel from her foreign suppliers, spurring efforts for technological supremacy and self-sufficiency. The Kfir jet fighter, based on the French mirage, was one of the first large-scale projects in this effort.
Lavi grounded, high tech takes off
The effort for military self-sufficiency reached its limits in the 1980s, when Israel tried to develop the Lavi jet fighter. The cost proved beyond her and the project was abandoned, but this meant that, in the mid-eighties, hundreds of engineers with experience at the cutting edge ofaerodynamics, avionics, computers and electronics were released onto the market. The Lavi project’s demise has been described as one of the greatest ever boosts to Israeli high-tech industry.
Since the Lavi, Israeli defense industries have focused more on components, electronics, avionics and other systems that are installed on American or other platforms. Israel has arranged many reciprocal procurement agreements with leading aerospace and military manufacturers, which help sustain high-tech industries. The development of these auxiliary systems has also given Israeli high-tech industries an edge in civilian spin-offs in security, electronics, computers, software and the burgeoning Internet sectors.
The military imperative has not disappeared. Even in the era of the peace process, Israel must keep up her guard. In response to the Iraqi Scuds that hit Tel Aviv in the 1991 Gulf War Israel began development of the Arrow anti-missile missile. The Arrow program began as part of the US SDI (Star Wars) program, requiring considerable advances in electronics, computers and ballistics. The Arrow will soon be ready for operational deployment. In general, the search for better systems in the areas of weapons, intelligence gathering, and command and control, goes on apace.
In the 1990s, Israel became only the eighth country in the world to develop and launch satellites, beginning with the Amos civilian communications satellite, followed by the Ofek military satellites and the Eros civilian photo-reconnaissance satellite. Israel now partners with NASA, the ESA and the Russian space program, building component and complete satellites for scientific and civilian uses.
In 2002, two of Israel’s six largest industrial companies by turnover were high-tech companies: Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), Intel Electronics, as well as pharmaceutical company Teva (Nasdaq:TEVA; TASE:TEVA). The largest exporters in terms of sales included high-tech companies Teva, IAI, Intel Electronics, and Vishay Intertechnology (Israel), with over $1 billion in exports each.
In part, the economic necessity derives from the military one. Israel’s defense budget is inadequate for her to maintain her military advantage. One solution is export. Israel is both a highly successful defense and civilian high-tech exporter.
However, the global defense market is shrinking. Civilian applications of the skills in software, communications, imaging, process control, etc., derived from military industries, have therefore become increasingly important. For example, the need for better night-vision equipment led to local engineers becoming trained in the field of image processing, and to the establishment of two trailblazing Israeli high-tech companies: Scitex (Nasdaq: SCIX; TASE:SCIX), and Elscint. Because Israel is such a small market, export is essential for civilian products too, providing a further incentive to maintain technological excellence, particularly in certain niche markets – network security, for example, where Check Point (Nasdaq: CHKP) is a world leader; Mercury Interactive Corporation (Nasdaq: MERQ) is a leader in enterprise testing and performance management solutions; and Amdocs (NYSE: DOX) is a leader in customer relations management, billing and order management solutions.
In the 1990s, pharmaceuticals and medical devices became a rising high-tech sector. Teva has become a leading global generic drug maker, followed by Taro Pharmaceutical Industries (Nasdaq:TARO) and Agis Industries (TASE:AGIS). Medical device companyGiven Imaging (Nasdaq: GIVN) and biopharmaceutical companies such as Savient Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq:SVNT) are becoming prominent players, listed on Nasdaq and European bourses.
The wave of immigration from the countries of the former Soviet Union in the 1990s provided an influx of skilled scientists and engineers. The government’s technology incubator program was largely a response to the need to provide these newcomers with employment, and harness their talents to the needs of industry. The immigrants helped fuel Israel’s phenomenal growth rate between 1991 and 1994, and helped man the high-tech boom after 1998. In the late 1990s, Israeli high-tech began suffering from a shortage of skilled manpower. The government and industry have been expanding educational and vocational programs to meet the demand. The high-tech slump since late 2000 has slowed demand for trained personnel, but not ended the shortage altogether.
Israel has few natural resources. The aspiration of her population for a Western standard of living can only be satisfied through integration into the global market. Israel’s transition from a State-dominated, centralized, protectionist economy to a free market means that traditional industries such as textiles are disappearing, losing out to low-cost overseas competition. How far and how fast this transition should go is a matter of debate, but there is no doubt that high-tech, where Israel enjoys a relative advantage, will be a mainstay of Israel’s economic future. As Israel’s economy restructures from traditional industries for the local market to export-oriented high-tech, high-tech exports as a percentage of total exports has been steadily increasing, rising from 45% in 1995 to 57% in 2000.
Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products soared to over $13 billion 2000. Although the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production,electronics, communications, monitoring and control equipment, and avionics are still key exports. Pharmaceuticals and medical devices and equipment are also becoming increasingly important. High-tech is still the key growth engine for the Israeli economy and a mark of its integration into the global economy.
An important aspect of Israel’s integration into the world economy has been increasing inward investment, particularly in the high-tech industry. Companies like Cisco Systems, Motorola, Intel, IBM, Nortel, Microsoft, Mitsubishi, Deutsche Telekom, aviation and space companies, to mention just a few, have recognized that Israel is a fount of high-tech innovation they cannot afford to ignore. They have set up subsidiaries and research centers here, invested in Israeli companies, technology incubators, and venture capital funds, or found Israeli strategic partners.
Annual foreign investment in Israel grew from $400 million in 1992, to peak at $5.0 billion in 2000. Foreign investment subsequently contracted, due to the high-tech crisis, the global economic slowdown and political tensions in the Middle East, but is still substantial. Foreign venture capital investment grew apace, rising from $587 million in 1998, peaking at $3.1 billion in 2000, before falling to $982 million in 2002, still higher than the level of five years previously. Investment by Israeli venture capital funds followed the same pattern: peaking at $1.27 billion in 2000, but totaling only $481 million in 2002, including $62 million in foreign companies. (Sources: MonetyTree and IVC). The Bank of Israel reported that total foreign investment in Israel amounted to $2.6 billion in 2002, including $1.2 billion in direct foreign investment.
With 3,000 start-ups, the Global Competitiveness Report 2000 ranked Israel second behind the US in the number of start-ups and first relative to population. The weight of start-ups of GDP was 3% in 2000, compared with 0.4% in 1997. The comparable figures for the US was 0.3% and 0.1%, respectively. Israel was was highly ranked in terms of the number of engineers and education, but poorly in terms of physical infrastructure, a situation the government is trying to remedy.
Israel was ranked second in civilian R&D expenditure as a percentage of GDP, rising from 2.7% in 1994 to 4.2% in 1999. Total R&D expenditure in 2000 was $4.2 billion and NIS 23.9 billion in 2001. State expenditure on civilian R&D has been rising faster than GDP through the 1990s, mostly being invested in high-tech, but also agriculture, manufacturing and biotechnology.
In any discussion of the future of Israeli high-tech, the following points tend to emerge:
- The limiting factor on the sector’s growth is a shortage of engineers and managers. Although training programs at universities, colleges and government and industry sponsored retraining courses have been expanding, plus attempts to expand the labor pool by tapping haredi (ultra-orthodox) and other communities, demand continues to outstrip supply, even in the wake of the cutbacks due to the high-tech crisis since mid-2000. Demand to allow the entry of foreign skilled engineers and programmers for the high-tech sector have abated, the issue may re-emerge when the industry recovers and if the Israeli labor pool remains insufficient.
- The industry needs to consolidate through company mergers.
- The government’s role needs to be reviewed. Many argue that government support for civilian R&D is not sufficiently discriminating, resulting in financial and human resources becoming too thinly spread.
- Tax reform to ease mergers and acquisitions, better reward employees, and encourage foreign investment. Although progress has been made on these issues, stumbling blocks remain.
- New directions: Biotechnology and medical devices are seen as coming fields. While Israel is well placed to exploit it, with outstanding life sciences and medical research institutions, this will mean a departure from the military-industrial symbiosis which has done so much to sustain high-tech development up to now. Nevertheless, Israel has a number of outstanding and growing start-ups and companies in these fields, including many new listings on Nasdaq and European exchanges. Israel is ranked third in the world in biotechnology start-ups.In 2000 there were 160 biotechnology and 400 medical device companies in Israel, compared with 25 in 1988, employing 4,000 people and generating $800 million in turnover. 20 companies are publicly traded, half in the US and half in Europe. Investment in biotechnology has been growing steadily, reaching totaled $1.7 billion in 2000, including about $200 million in venture capital. There are 15 life sciences venture capital funds operating in Israel.
- In 2000, exports of high-tech products accounted for 55% of all exports, up from 23% in 1991. Exports of electronics communications components, electronic components, medical equipment and software and IT products peaked at over $13 billion, before the onset of the high-tech crisis in late 2000 caused a sharp contraction in exports and production.
- In 2000, 195,000 people were employed in the various high-tech sectors, compared with 148,870 people a decade earlier. Demand for engineers and technicians is estimated at 2,000-3,000 a year. The various academic institutions currently supply 1,000-1,300.
- National expenditure on civilian R&D amounted to NIS 23.9 billion (over $5 billion) in 2001, 4.2% of GDP. Spending on civilian R&D has remained stable despite the recession since 2000, although the focus on research has been shifting from Internet and software to new fields such as biotechnology, nanotechnology. Chemical and chemical products, electronic components, communications components, supervision, monitoring, and medical equipment accounted for 87% of industrial R&D expenditure in 2001.
- Israel issues the largest number of companies in the US after the US itself and Canada. According to the Bank of Israel, investment by foreign residents totaled $9.4 billion in 2000, up from $3 billion in 1995. Israeli companies raised $4.2 billion overseas in 2000, mostly on Nasdaq, but also including $800 million raised on European exchanges. The 2000 figure is 13 times the amount raised only five years earlier, in 1995, reflecting the immense growth by Israeli high tech and its emergence as a global player. Foreign investment and the raising of capital by Israeli companies overseas has since fallen to a fraction of the 2000 figure.
- Ruthie Blum: the Forrest Gump of Israeli High Tech (ruthfullyyours.com)
- ‘Mass Terror Attack’ Averted: Labor Union Will Decide Future Layoffs at Teva (algemeiner.com)
- In Israel, lingering bitterness over a failed fighter project (upi.com)
- facts about israel (lunaticoutpost.com)
- Ray Cook – As I See It: Tesco and Israeli Apartheid debunked (raymondcook.net)
- International Interns Flock to Israel (prweb.com)
- High-tech Kitchens: Features and Styles (wrenkitchens.com)
- Israel ETFs Bounce Back From Regional Drama (benzinga.com)
- In Boston, Israel’s brain drain becomes a meeting of the minds (timesofisrael.com)
- Israel-EU ties to fray without compromise on settlements: Israeli official – Reuters (reuters.com)