19 December 2018 - 11 Tevet 5779 - י"א טבת ה' אלפים תשע"ט
Singapore Technologies to test self-driving buses in the city of Ashdod E-mail

Self-driving buses developed by Singapore Technologies (ST) Engineering will soon be tested in the port city of Ashdod in Israel.

The company will begin developing and testing autonomous buses next year under an agreement signed on 30 October at the sixth annual Smart Mobility Summit in Tel Aviv. It will also set up a new research and development centre in Israel to support the development of autonomous buses, and will collaborate with Ashdod, Israel’s sixth-largest city, on other transportation matters, such as a fleet management system for public buses and an intelligent transport system for traffic management.

“Using big data analytics and machine learning, these solutions will improve the service quality of [the city’s] transport systems and enhance commuter experience through real-time traffic and commuter sensing, supervisory and control capabilities, as well as early warning of potential service disruptions,” said a spokesperson for ST Engineering.

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Japanese insurance firm Sompo to invest in Israeli startups E-mail

As reported by Reuters, Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Insurance announced that it was expanding into Israel with the launch of an innovation lab that will focus on investments in technology startups.

The Israeli hub, which will invest in startups in the fields of insurance technology, mobility, health, elder care, home care, remote medical care, blockchain, “the internet of things” and cybersecurity, will be Sompo’s third, after Tokyo and Silicon Valley.

Sompo, a core unit of Sompo Holdings, did not disclose financial details. It said its Israeli office will seek out potential startups in which to invest while also focusing on collaborations for new products for the Japanese and global markets.

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SOSA innovation platform to set up hubs in India E-mail

South of Salame (SOSA), an open innovation platform from Israel, is investigating setting up tech innovation hubs in at least three Indian states: Maharashtra, Assam and Goa.

SOSA CEO Uzi Scheffer has said that almost 100 startups can access innovation networks each year. With the help of these innovation hubs, Indian startups get a platform to reach out to like-minded associates and corporates in several spaces, such as fintech, big data, clean tech, insuretech, mobility solutions, cyber security, etc.

In May, Intel, along with the Israel Consulate General to South India, announced a cooperative strategy to develop innovation and technology while linking startups in both countries.

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IAI wins big contract with India E-mail

Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has signed a significant deal, worth US$777 million, with Indian state-owned company BEL. IAI will supply LRSAM Air and Missile Defense (AMD) systems, the marine version of the AMD system Barak 8, for seven ships in the Indian Navy.

The LRSAM system is an operational AMD system used by Israel’s navy and India’s navy, air and land forces. It provides broad aerial and point defence against a wide range of threats to the marine arena from the air, sea or land. The system integrates several advanced state-of-the-art systems, such as digital radar, command and control, launchers, interceptors with modern RF seekers, data link and system-wide connectivity.

India maintains close relations with Israel’s defence establishment, and has entered into several substantial deals with Israeli defence companies.

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JD.com eying Israel E-mail

The management team of Chinese online shopping giant JD.com visited Israel in November, headed by Terry Song, the company’s strategic investment director. This was Song’s first visit to the country, where the company is looking for investment and strategic co-operation opportunities.

JD.com is China’s secondlargest online shopping company after Alibaba, with a 25% share of the Chinese market and over 300 million active users. The company operates from Beijing. Its shareholders include Google’s parent company Alphabet, Walmart and Tencent Holdings. It makes dozens of acquisitions and strategic partnerships each year involving companies in spheres such as travel sharing, secondhand bulletin boards and cloud computing.

According to Globes, a senior delegation from JD.com visited Israel more than a year ago, however the company has not yet made any direct investments in Israeli technologies.

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