27 May 2018 - 14 Sivan 5778 - י"ד סיון ה' אלפים תשע"ח
TAU sets up US$20m venture capital fund with Asian investors E-mail

Tel Aviv University (TAU), together with investors worldwide, announced in April that it is establishing an earlystage startup investment venture capital fund called TAU Ventures. Sources close to Tel Aviv University estimate that the fund will total US$20 million.

This is the first time that a venture capital fund is being established by a university in Israel. It is based on similar funds at US universities such as MIT, Berkeley and Stanford.

The fund’s offices are located in the Miles S. Nadal Home for Technological Innovation and Entrepreneurship at Ramat Aviv, which was recently renovated and will include working spaces for the entrepreneurs that the TAU Ventures fund will invest in.

Aside from investments, the fund will operate various technological incubator programmes, together with strategic partners, in a range of technological fields. The first programme that has been running is with Japanese giant NEC, focusing on cyber security.

Investors in the fund include Singapore investment fund Chartered High Tech Fund, which brings together leading Japanese firms via the designated “Japan-Israel High Tech Fund”, and additional investors from US and Canada. The fund will operate on a seven-year cycle, with investments being made in the first four years.

Nimrod Cohen has been appointed managing partner of TAU Ventures. He previously served as a partner in Plus Ventures and led investments in companies such as YOTPO, Bringg, Ciamgine, WSC Sports (which was sold to Snapchat) and many more.

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Reception in Hong Kong marks Israel’s 70th Anniversary E-mail

The Consulate General of Israel in Hong Kong celebrated Israel’s 70th Independence Day on 22 April at a reception graced by Mrs Carrie Lam, Chief Executive of the Hong Kong SAR, as the guest of honour, and attended by Hong Kong government officials, leaders of the business community, Israeli companies in Hong Kong, leaders of the Jewish community and friends.

At the official ceremony, Consul General Ahuva Spieler said: “Israel and Hong Kong have so much in common. Both small places with small population largely made up of immigrants, we both place a great deal of importance on education and family values. The friendship between the Jewish and Chinese people is historical, and based on mutual respect and shared values. This make us natural and great partners. Thirtytwo years after Israel re-opened its consulate in Hong Kong, the economic ties that bind us are stronger than ever. Today, Hong Kong is home to the largest concentration of businesses in Asia-Pacific region. There is an increasing interest in Hong Kong and mainland China by Israeli companies, because of Hong Kong’s vitality and importance in the Asian market.”

Chief Executive Carrie Lam said: “I am here this evening to add my voice to Israel’s anniversary celebration. The spirit of Israel – rooted in cohesion and confidence, in determination and innovation – is one the people of Hong Kong can readily appreciate. It is no wonder we love to visit Israel. Last July, nine members of our Legislative Council Panel on Commerce and Industry travelled to Israel to learn more about your renowned approach to innovation and technology. There is much we can learn from Israel when it comes to innovation and technology, a sector I believe to be essential to our continuing success in this 21st century.”

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Hong Kong raises funds at the annual UIA Dinner E-mail

The United Israel Appeal (UIA) of Hong Kong held its Annual Dinner on 15 March at the Hong Kong Jewish Community Centre, with a large gathering of 170 attendees.

In special attendance were Ahuva Spieler, Consul General of Israel in Hong Kong; David Koschitzky, Chairman of Keren Hayesod-UIA World Board of Trustees; Irit Barash, Director of Keren Hayesod-UIA Israel, and UIA Directors Robert Dorfman, Daniel Green, Philippe Bera, Robert Meyer, Sharon Ser, Jonathan Zeman, Ronen Zion, Daniel Kirwin, Yoel Levy and Marc Zilkha.

David Koschitzky, who formally opened UIA Hong Kong with his wife Serena, greeted guests and expressed his deep appreciation and thanks to the local community for their support for Israel through Keren Hayesod over many years.

This year’s guest speaker was Colonel Richard Kemp, who in 2009 gave Jewish people all over the world hope when, at an emergency session of the UN in Geneva, he forcefully refuted Judge Goldstone’s allegations of war crimes against the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) during Operation Cast Lead. He was present in Israel during Operation Protective Edge in 2014, and during Pillar of Defence in 2012, when he met with senior military officers, government officials and ministers. Colonel Kemp has spent most his life combating terrorism and insurgency.

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Israel to welcome more Nepali workers E-mail

Officials from Nepal have indicated that the government of Israel has shown positive intent towards receiving more Nepali migrant workers as caregivers from this year.

During a recent meeting with officials from the Department of Foreign Employment (DoFE), officials from Israel’s Embassy in Kathmandu hinted that the country might accept 500 new caregivers from Nepal in 2018. DoFE Spokesperson Mohan Adhikari commented: “Israeli officials said they would release a demand for 500 Nepali workers -this means more Nepalis would clinch jobs in Israel, which is one of the most sought-after foreign employment destinations among Nepalis.”

Israeli officials will set some conditions before allocating the proposed number of jobs they told Nepali officials to upgrade caregivers’ training and the training curriculum.

They also sought a revision of the existing service charges that workers pay before securing employment in Israel.

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Precious Chinese silk exhibition on display in Tel Aviv E-mail

Israelis recently had the opportunity to view 27 exquisite Chinese silk costumes in an exhibition at the China Cultural Center in Tel Aviv titled “In Praise of Silk: Fashion with Tradition in China”.

The exhibition, which opened in March, demonstrated the process of and changes in the creation of Chinese silk costumes through three different lenses: history, craftsmanship and Chinese elements.

In addition to the silk costumes from the China National Silk Museum, which is located in Zhejiang Province in the east of China, Chinese calligraphy, traditional paintings, paper-cuts and Chinese seals were also on show in the exhibition.

“Silk is the keyword of the exhibition, which provided an opportunity to approach and experience silk embroidery techniques,” said Chinese Ambassador to Israel Zhan Yongxin at the opening ceremony.

The ancient Silk Road was a network of trade routes, and silk was certainly the most lucrative and sought-after item traded across the Eurasian continent, bringing wealth and enriching culture for the peoples and states along the routes, and sometimes helping make peace between different tribes or states, said the Chinese envoy.

This benefited the ancient civilisations such as the Chinese, Persians, Jews, Arabs, Indians, Greeks and Romans along this road, leaving an abundant cultural heritage of humankind, added Zhan.

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