25 March 2017 - 27 Adar 5777 - כ"ז אדר ה' אלפים תשע"ז
Israeli startups win at Global Innovation Awards 2016 E-mail

Israeli startups took first and second place at the Global Innovation Awards 2016, an international startup competition featuring 21 startups from around the world competing for US$1.5 million in cash prizes. The winners were announced in August.

Israeli startup NiNiSpeech, which developed a revolutionary digital platform for treating speech disorders, took first place in the competition. Another Israeli startup, AerialGuard, which has developed an autonomous navigation system for unmanned aircraft, came in second place.

The competition was initiated by Chinese consulting firm ShengJing360, and the finals, held in Beijing, were part of the Entrepreneur Festival, which attracts entrepreneurs and investors from all over the world.

This is the second consecutive year that an Israeli startup has won first place in the competition. Last year, Israeli startup DiaCardio, a developer of innovative software for decoding echocardiograms, took first prize.

The two Israeli winners competed against 21 finalists: 10 from China, six from the US, three from Israel and two from Europe. The winners were selected by 11 judges from around the world and real-time voting from an audience of over 1,000 people. The finalists were selected from 3,000 international startups in an eight-month process spanning four geographic regions.

The top five startups will each receive US$200,000 in cash, while the startups in 6th to 10th place will each receive US$100,000. The ShengJing Group is also considering investments in some of the startups through a dedicated investment fund set up for the competition.

Israel was represented in the competition by Israel’s Ambassador to China Matan Vilnai and a representative of Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), Yoav Tzruya, both of whom spoke at the event. Tzruya served as a judge in the competition.

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Indian company Wipro to purchase H. R. Givon Ltd E-mail

Israeli private equity firm FIMI Opportunity Funds, founded and headed by Ishay Davidi, announced in August that it is selling its Haifa-based precision machining and assembly company H. R. Givon Ltd to Indian company Wipro Infrastructure Engineering, a unit of Wipro Enterprises Ltd, for NIS 300 million. FIMI bought H. R. Givon Ltd in 2008 for NIS 70 million.

Givon develops, produces and sells precision components, mainly titanium products, for the aviation industry. The company is able to supply products directly to aircraft assembly lines, and covers all stages of development and manufacture. It has two production sites in Israel and one in Seattle in the US.

Among Givon’s customers are Boeing, Israel Aerospace Industries, Elbit Systems Ltd and Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd. The company has long-term contracts with these companies, including for the supply of components for the new Boeing 787. It employs about 270 people in Israel and the US.

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Chinese firm purchases mobile games developer E-mail

A Chinese consortium led by Shanghai Giant Network Technology Co., and joined by a private-equity arm set up by Alibaba’s Jack Ma, agreed to purchase an Israeli games business for US$4.4 billion in August.

The consortium, including Jack Ma’s Yunfeng Capital, will purchase a 100% stake in Caesars Interactive Entertainment’s subsidiaries, including mobilegames unit Playtika.

Caesars Interactive Entertainment has developed casinostyle games including “Caesars Casino,” “Bingo Blitz” and “World Series of Poker”.

Founded in 2010, Playtika is headquartered in Herzliya, Israel. It specialises in free-toplay, casino-style games such as “Slotomania” and “Bingo Blitz” that use virtual currency and are designed for mobile and social platforms. Caesars Entertainment spent around US$100 million to buy Playtika in 2011.

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Infosys invests in cloud computing startup Print E-mail

Infosys Ltd, India’s secondlargest software services company, has invested US$4 million in a minority stake in Cloudyn Ltd, an Israeli company that makes software for monitoring and optimising cloud computing.

It is Infosys’s second investment in an Israel-based cloud-computing startup from its US$500 million innovation fund.

Cloudyn’s software helps chief information officers at large enterprises to keep tabs on and manage the usage of cloud computing when it is bought from service providers such as Amazon Web Services. Privately-held Cloudyn, which was founded in 2011, is estimated to have revenue of US$3 million and counts many Fortune 1000 firms as its customers.

(Issue Sep 2016)


Gujarat hosts road show for Israeli businesses and government officials E-mail

A delegation from the state of Gujarat in India hosted the one-day “Vibrant Gujarat Road Show” at the Dan Panorama hotel in Tel Aviv on 1 August. The aim of the event was to strengthen economic and social ties and cooperation between Gujarat and Israel, and to promote the Vibrant Gujarat Global Summit 2017.

With the theme of “Gujarat Connecting India to World”, the road show featured various activities involving leading Israeli companies, industry associations and government officials.

The delegates also discussed the investor-friendly policies, the ideal economic ecosystem and the single-window clearance procedures that Gujarat offers. In a joint study by the government of India and the World Bank in 2015, Gujarat was ranked the top state in India in terms of “Ease of Doing Business”.

The leader of the delegation to Tel Aviv, Mrs Mamta Verma, Industries Commissioner, Government of Gujarat, said: “Our delegation’s objective is to strengthen the relationship between Israel and Gujarat. Gujarat will play an important part by offering avenues across various sectors to further enhance business relationships between India and Israel. With some mega-projects planned in the state of Gujarat, Israel’s expertise in areas such as defence, aerospace, startups, technology and textiles, to name just a few, can play a significant role.”

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