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Lessons from the start-up nation

Portrait of Björn Bloching
Senior Advisor
Hamburg Office, Central Europe
July 7, 2016

How global companies are tapping into Israel’s innovation pipeline

Israel’s innovation sector is an irresistible magnet for many of the world’s largest companies: In only the first three months of 2016, Sony snapped up chip developer Altair for USD 212 million, Oracle bought Israeli cloud computing specialist Ravello for USD 500 million, and Cisco spent USD 320 million on Leaba, another chip-design start-up. But it’s not just global multinationals that are converging on Silicon Wadi, as Israel’s tech hub in and around Tel Aviv is known. Mid-size companies, venture capitalists and entrepreneurs from around the world are all honing in on the country’s booming tech scene to invest, find partners, and discover new business models and technologies for their digital transformation. They come from all sectors – not only IT but cars and finance, agriculture and health. But the money flowing into Israel’s start-up sector is only a small part of the story. Like no other technology cluster outside Silicon Valley, Israel has become a focus of companies seeking to diversify and globalize their innovation strategies. Beyond M&A and venture finance, companies have expanded their innovation toolkit to include incubators and accelerators, all of which are proliferating in Israel across a variety of technology sectors. The country has become a vibrant high-tech laboratory where global companies are testing new models for innovation, including hackathons, innovation labs, and other forms of networking and collaboration.

With this report, we want to make the case (for anyone who still needs convincing) that Israel’s rich and dynamic tech ecosystem offers an alternative location and innovation model that happens to be just a single time zone away.

"Israel is unique in the ease and speed with which we can get access and network."

Oded Salomy

Visa’s General Manager for Israel and head of the Tel Aviv Collab

More practically, we want to show you how companies like yours can successfully engage with Israel’s high-tech scene. And for policymakers, we also summarize valuable lessons for boosting entrepreneurship and innovation.


Lessons from the Start-Up nation


How global companies are tapping into Israel’s innovation pipeline and what other countries can learn

Published July 2016. Available in