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StartUps

Israel High Tech Scene January 22 – January 28

Tel Aviv

Tel Aviv at sunset, Israel Startup Israel

New Startups / VC Funding
Deel Worth $12 Billion
Deel, an Israeli startup and unicorn that deals with payroll solutions for firms with international staffs, hit $295 million annual recurring revenue (ARR) at a $12 billion valuation – up from just $57 million ARR a year ago. The company has also launched Deel HR, US Payroll, and Deel Engage, which they say make it possible, for the first time, to hire, manage, and pay global teams compliantly on one platform.

“We’ve disrupted global hiring, and now we plan to disrupt the whole HR industry,” said Alex Bouaziz, co-founder and CEO of Deel. “Products that radically simplify HR get us closer to our goal of helping millions of people get to work for the best companies… Read More Here

New Startup GoodOnes Will Help You Organize Your Pics
GoodOnes, an Israeli startup that offers an app to do away with one’s personal pics that are just not that good, has come out of stealth with a $3.5 million raise in seed funding led by TLV Partners with participation from Liquid2 Ventures (Joe Montana’s fund), as well as Rich Miner (former co-founder of Android), and Peter Welinder (founder of Carousel, sold to Dropbox). The company’s tag line is “Goodbye, cluttered camera roll. No more scrolling through receipts, screenshots and duplicates to find that good one.”

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GoodOnes was founded in 2021 by Israel Shalom, an 8200 alumni and a former product and engineering leader at Google and Dropbox… Read More Here

PayEm Raises Almost $50 Million for Fintech
PayEm, an Israeli fintech startup offering a global spend and procurement platform for high-growth and multinational organizations, raised $20 million in equity funding from Mitsubishi Financial Group, Collaborative Fund and others. The firm has also acquired $200 million in credit financing from Viola Credit.

This raise comes a little over a year after PayEm’s previous raise when the company brought in $27 million in funding from a $7million seed round led by Pitango First and NFX with participation by LocalGlobe and Fresh Fund, followed by a $20 million Series A led by Glilot+, the early growth… Read More Here

Pigmentum Raises $6 Million for Milk Alternatives
Pigmentum, an Israeli startup that develops non-dairy alternatives from lettuce, raised $6 million in a seed round of funding led by Kibbutz Yotvata, Arkin Holdings, American and Israeli family offices, private investors, and others.

Dairy alternatives are not just for people with lactose issues or vegans anymore. The development of alternatives for animal based products is now part of the worldwide campaign against climate change. Dairies, with all of the energy and resources that go into them, combined with the waste produced by all of those cows, are a major factor in global warming and pollution in general.

And Israel Startup Nation is ripe with… Read More Here

Israel’s Cellebrite Signs $14 Million Agreement with Singapore Law Enforcement Agency
Cellebrite, an Israeli digital intelligence solutions provider, has entered into a five-year agreement with an unspecified national police agency in Singapore, which will use Cellebrite’s collect and review solution, Premium, to help lawfully expedite the collection of digital evidence. The contract is worth $14 million.

It was not that long ago that Israel and Singapore lacked full diplomatic ties. It was not until March of 2021 that the two nations agreed to upgrade their relations to full ties with an exchange… Read More Here

Apollo Power Launches World’s First Automatic Flexible Solar-Film Facility 
Apollo Power, an Israeli firm that deals with alternative energies, launched “Apollo Carmel.” The company says that this is the first automatic factory of its kind in the world to produce flexible solar panels.

Located in Israel’s Mevo Carmel Science and Industry Park, the facility entered its test-run phase and it is expected to reach a capacity of about 190 megawatts per year, which equals the average consumption of 35,000-40,000 households. This will increase Apollo Power’s production capacity to mass production.

The “Apollo Carmel” facility…. Read More Here

IPOs and Unicorns
Freightos Sets $500 Million NASDAQ SPAC IPO
Freightos, an Israeli firm that has developed a platform for comparing prices, pricing, ordering and payment for real-time transportation and shipping services, went public with a NASDAQ IPO through an SPAC merger with blank-check provider Gesher I Acquisition Corp., coming away with a $500 million valuation. Freightos also brought in over $80 million in capital through the IPO, including $10 million from Qatar Airways.

And Qatar – the country that owns national carrier Qatar Airways – has no diplomatic relations with Israel. Qatar actually takes a… Read More Here

Enlight Renewable Energy Looking To Wall Street IPO
Enlight Renewable Energy is looking to hold an initial public offering (IPO) on a Wall Street Stock Exchange. No plans have been set, as of yet, for the company, which specializes in projects involving the generation of electricity from renewable energy. But it filed a prospectus with the SEC and is reportedly looking at raising as much as $200 million.

So, finally some good news for Israel Startup Nation in the new year. So far there has largely been a continuation of layoffs and so on because of the current global financial crisis. But if the Enlight Renewable Energy IPO takes off it would mean a reverse of last year’s trend that saw canceled IPOs and the devaluation of startups. Enlight is currently traded on the Tase Tel Aviv 125 Index and is 98% publicly held with a market cap currently above… Read More Here

Science
Israeli Scientists Use Red Algae Against Anti-Biotic Resistant Bacteria
Israeli scientists from the Ben-Gurion University (BGU) in the Negev have found that red algae can be used to find ways of dealing with anti-biotic resistant strains of bacteria.

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) explains antimicrobial resistance happens when germs like bacteria and fungi develop the ability to defeat the drugs designed to kill them. That means the germs are not killed and continue to grow. Resistant infections can be difficult, and sometimes impossible… Read More Here 

Mergers and Acquisitions
Playtika Offers $740 Million for Angry Birds
The Israeli-founded mobile gaming giant Playtika is making a play for Rovio Entertainment, the Finnish firm that is best known for the “Angry Birds” video game. Playtika has offered to pay 60% above market value for Rovio stock at €9.05 ($9.95) per share for a total of €690 million ($738 million) in cash.

First released in 2009, Rovio’s Angry Birds focuses on a flock of angry birds who try to save their eggs from green-colored pigs. The game became so popular that it spawned not one, but two feature films. The animated movies starred Hollywood stars like Jason Sudeikis and Josh Gad…. Read More Here

Dell Buys Cloudify For $100 Million
Dell has acquired Cloudify, an Israeli cloud orchestration services startup. According to a report in TechCrunch, the deal could be worth as much as $100 million.

Dell did not publicize the acquisition. But TechCrunch said that it had seen the papers Dell filed with the SEC that outline the benefits the company will offer to Cloudify employees. A Dell spokesperson also confirmed the news saying, “Dell Technologies announced that it has completed the acquisition of Cloudify. This transaction allows Dell to continue to innovate our edge… Read More Here

Israel’s Iguazio Sold To McKinsey & Company
Iguazio, an Israeli startup that deals with AI and machine learning, has been acquired by Global management consulting firm McKinsey & Company. McKinsey said the acquisition will allow it to be able to dramatically accelerate and scale AI deployments, driving further impact for clients. While the terms of the deal have not yet been released, Calcalist estimates that it could be worth as much as $100 million.

Founded in 2014 by CEO Asaf Somekh, CTO Yaron Haviv, COO Yaron Segev, and VP Architecture Orit Nissan-Messing, Iguazio provides a Data Science Platform to automate machine learning pipelines. The company boasts… Read More Here

Other Business Stories
Papaya Global Divests From Israeli Banks over Judicial Reform Plan
Israeli startup Papaya Global, a fintech unicorn that offers a cloud based platform for companies to handle their payrolls, has decided to divest itself of Israeli banks due to the judicial reform plan proposed by Benjamin Netanyahu’s government. The move came after the Governor of the Bank of Israel himself warned Netanyahu that the plan could harm foreign investment in Israel since it would weaken Israel’s democratic system.

Eynat Guez, Co-Founder and CEO Papaya Global, Tweeted a statement on the matter Thursday morning… Read More Here

Namogoo Making More Cutbacks
Namogoo, an Israeli company offering a Digital Journey Continuity platform, is starting 2023 with yet another round of layoffs, firing about 25 people. This latest round of firings comes just two months after Namogoo laid off about 25% of its workforce, or 25 people, mostly in Israel, last November. And just 8 months after the company raised $14 million. The company has raised $81 million to date.

According to Calcalist, Namogoo CEO and co-founder Chemi Katz said the second round of layoffs will make the company profitable… Read More Here

Gett Now Profitable
Gett, an Israeli based international taxi services company, is reportable now a profitable company. Swedish investment fund VNV Global Gett’s “financial restructuring has been complete,” and it is “growing 30% year-on-year in Israel.” The company is said to be debt free and EBITDA positive, but with a valuation of just $258 million. VNV owns a 48.8% stake in Gett.

This is good news for a company that last year was forced to scrap plans for an IPO. Gett was just one of many Israeli firms in 2022 to suffer from the global financial crisis. But the $258 million valuation is less than the $265 million estimate from last May and way down from the $1 billion valuation…. Read More Here

Major Papaya Global Player Dovi Frances Slams Company’s Divestment from Israeli Banks
Dovi Frances, a founding partner of the investment firm Group 11, has sharply criticized Papaya Global’s move to divest itself from Israeli banks. Frances, whose firm is a major investor in Papaya Global, stated in an open letter on LinkedIn that he does not feel that a business should be making such a drastic move based on political considerations.

On Thursday, Israeli startup Papaya Global, a fintech unicorn that offers a cloud based platform for companies to handle their payrolls, revealed it decided to divest itself of Israeli banks due to the judicial reform plan proposed by Benjamin Netanyahu’s government. The move came after the Governor of the Bank of Israel himself warned Netanyahu that the plan could harm... Read More Here

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