The MassChallenge has chosen Israel for its first partnership program outside of Boston.
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The Boston based MassChallenge, the world’s largest startup accelerator competition, has come to Israel for its first official program outside of Boston. MassChallenge Israel will identify each year the highest-potential startups in Israel to participate in the MassChallenge accelerator in Boston.
Every year the nonprofit organization selects 100 new companies to participate in its four-month accelerator program, which provides entrepreneurs access to expert mentors, marketing and media resources, funding opportunities and free office space in Boston. The best performing companies can win up to $1 million.
The funding is not an investment, but a grant. The money comes from MassChallenge’s sponsor companies such as, Oracle, Verizon, Microsoft as well as the State of Massachusetts. The winning companies can use the funds as they see fit.
MassChallenge Israel declares its mission to be to enable top-tier Israeli startups to access global markets by connecting them with the very best people and organizations in the Boston entrepreneurial ecosystem.
To be eligible, a company must be a seed or early stage startup that probably has not raised over $500K of investment, or have more than $1 million in annual revenue. To qualify for the separate entry process for Israeli startups in the 2014 MassChallenge Accelerator, a company must currently be headquartered full-time in the State of Israel and 50% or more of its full-time employees must currently reside there.
The program begins this month.
Just last week, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick led a business delegation of more than one hundred people from his state to Israel, called the Innovation Partnership Mission.
It was during that trip that MassChallenge’s CEO, John Harthorne, announced the ten Israeli companies that have qualified for the competition.
He said, “Massachusetts and Israel have a special bond. Hundreds of Israeli-founded companies call Massachusetts home and that number is steadily increasing thanks to the robust, innovative and welcoming communities in Massachusetts and Israel. At MassChallenge, we have seen dozens of remarkable startups from Israel working in all sectors of technology. We are proud to be a close partner for Israel and we are proud of the great community in Massachusetts. It is an honor to contribute to the special bond shared by our communities.”
Governor Patrick said, “Massachusetts is home to an amazing array of startups and our entrepreneurial ecosystem is one of the strongest in the Nation. Through programs like MassChallenge, Massachusetts is able to extend an open invitation for the world’s highest-impact, highest-potential startups to grow their ideas in our commonwealth.”
The ten Israeli finalists are:
AutoAgronom, a company which develops a fully automated agricultural irrigation system;
Trendi Guru, formerly “DCB”; DCDI;
Lig – Making Legal Simple;
Myndlift, an educational company which develops tools for the treatment of ADHD;
OralSave, an early stage medical device company;
Recardo, a pre-paid gift card reselling company;
Vigor Medical Technologies, which develops new tools for treating chest traumas;
The competition will expand to London in December.