New Startups / VC Funding
NBA and Velocity Capital Invest in Israel’s Videocites
Videocites, an Israeli startup that has created the next-generation analytics solution the company says reveals the “true social footprint created by fans and partners on social media,” closed a Series B round of funding led by Velocity Capital Management with additional investments by Series A investor Infront Sports & Media AG, and NBA Equity. With offices around the globe, including one newly opened in New York, Videocites says it is providing the NBA with “greater insights into its global reach and brand exposure across social media content published by fans and media partners.”
Israel has a proven track record when it comes to video tech firms. For example, Synamedia, an Israeli video software provider formerly known as NDS, has worked with major businesses like Fox for 30 years. And CommonGround… Read More Here
Gable Raises $16 Million for Flexible Workspaces
Gable, an Israeli startup that offers office space and flexible workspace management solutions, kicked off the month of March on a positive note for Israel Startup Nation by completing a $16 million financing round co-led by SemperVirens and Foundation Capital, with participation from Tishman Speyer Ventures, Ulu Ventures and January Ventures. While we ordinarily think about cybersecurity or medtech when it comes to Israeli startups, sometimes a small one sneaks in with an overlooked service needed by just about every firm… Read More Here
Qwak and Hexa Make Fundraises
Hexa, an Israeli startup offering a 3D asset visualization and management platform, raised a $20.5 Million Series A round from Point72 Ventures, Samurai Incubate, Sarona Partners, and HTC. Having raised $1.2 million in pre-seed funding and $5.5 million in seed funding rounds, Hexa’s total funding to date stands at $27.2 million. And Qwak, an Israeli startup that developed an MLOps engineering platform, raised a new $12 million investment from Bessemer Venture Partners and others.
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MLOps stands for Machine Learning Operations. MLOps is a core function of Machine Learning engineering, focused on streamlining the process of taking machine learning models to production, and then maintaining… Read More Here
IPOs and Unicorns
Wiz Is World’s Biggest Cybersecurity Startup, Hits $10 Billion Valuation
Wiz, an Israeli cloud security startup and a unicorn, just became a super unicorn and the world’s biggest cybersecurity startup when it hit a $10 billion valuation on Monday. The new valuation came with a $300 million raise in a Series D funding round led by Lightspeed Venture Partners and existing investors Greenoaks Capital Partners and Index Ventures. Wiz also became the fastest SaaS company to achieve a $10 billion valuation.
The news comes after Wiz took part in a national “strike” or “work stoppage” held by Israeli high-tech firms that halted all work at midday to protest the Israeli government’s policies. Held a few weeks ago, the strike was a protest against the planned judicial reforms that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s… Read More Here
Some Good News for Startup Nation: Barclays Israel CEO Predicts Increase in Israeli IPOs Ahead
There is at least one person predicting a bright outlook for Israel Startup Nation in 2023. In an interview with Globes, Barclays Israel CEO Ilan Paz predicted an increase in the number of IPOs to be made by Israeli startups in 2023. This is in stark contrast to many doomsayers who are predicting an economic catastrophe for Israel should the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu move forward with its controversial judicial reform plans.
The government’s judicial reform plan would greatly curtail the power of Israel’s Supreme Court to nullify legislation passed by the Knesset and also limit the authority of Israel’s attorney general. Israel’s opposition charges this would harm Israel’s democracy thereby eroding foreign confidence in… Read More Here
Mergers and Acquisitions
Hewlett Packard Snags Israel’s Axis Security for $500 Million
Hewlett Packard Enterprise is acquiring Israel’s cybersecurity startup Axis Security for $500 million. Axis, which has developed cloud-based Security Services Edge (SSE) has raised $500 million to date.
Cybersecurity is more important than ever, so it is one of the fields – along with defense – to be in demand even in times of recession and contraction in the markets. And what country has a better reputation in this field than Israel, who seems to have an unlimited number of cybersecurity experts to draw from who come out of the IDF’s vaunted… Read More Here
Aura Air Israel’s Latest Bust, Sold At a Discount to Molekule
Aura Air, an Israeli air purification company currently listed on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, was bought out by the American air purification technology solutions and systems firm Moldekule for $10 million. This is considerably less than Aura Air’s one time valuation of as much as $45 million.
Under the terms of the Merger, Molekule has agreed to acquire Aura Air for a total purchase price of approximately 3,519,105 shares of Molekule common… Read More Here
Other Business Stories
Fitch Affirms Israel at ‘A+’ Rating – Outlook Stable
Fitch, the world renowned ratings firm, has reaffirmed Israel as a good bet for investment by renewing the country’s A+ rating. The move came as Israel is going through domestic turmoil over a plan by its government to drastically overhaul the nation’s court system and in spite of warnings from many in the business sector that the judicial reforms would harm investments in the country. But Fitch did acknowledge such concerns in its report.
The government’s judicial reform plan would greatly… Read More Here
Elbit Systems Rakes in $1 Billion Already This Year
Israeli defense and security systems contractor Elbit Systems has signed almost $1 billion worth of new contracts already so far in 2023. The latest were three deals with two different NATO nations for $372 million, which brings the firm’s total to $824 million in contracts since the start of the year.
Come rain or come shine in the world financial markets, in times of inflation or recession, one of the industries that will always be in demand is defense. Since countries like Romania are near war zones – Romania borders Ukraine which has been fending off a Russian invasion for a year now – they are understandably concerned with defense these days. And what country… Read More Here
BitSight Shuts Down VisibleRisk
American cybersecurity company BitSight is shutting down the operations of its Israeli office which was once the independent Israeli cybersecurity startup VisibleRisk. VisibleRisk was used as an R&D center by BitSight, but now its 40 employees will be losing their jobs. No reason has yet been given for the shutdown.
BitSight acquired VisibleRisk in September 2021 with part of the funds from a $250 million investment from Moody’s Corporation.
So, even cybersecurity firms in Israel Startup Nation are not immune from the continuing global financial crisis. The crisis has… Read More Here
The Good News to Come Out Of Startup Nation Israel in February
While February was a month of continued downsizing by many Israel Startup Nation firms and political turmoil in the country over its government’s judicial reform plans, there were still a number of positive business stories last month. These ranged from new defense contracts, historic events in Arab nations and a historic first.
For the first time in history, Israel has its own pavilion at the Abu Dhabi Defense Exhibition in the United Arab Emirates. The Israel Ministry of Defense… Read More Here
Goldman Sachs Blames Judicial Reform Plan for Shekel Dropping 8%
Goldman Sachs said the Israeli Shekel now reflects a risk premium due to the new judicial reforms being pushed through the Knesset by the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The firm previously reported concerns about the Shekel and Israel’s economy for the same reasons, as did other financial powerhouses like JPMorgan.
As of now, the Shekel has lost more than 8% of its value against the US Dollar since the plan was first proposed and Israel erupted… Read More Here
February Was a Tough Month for Startup Nation Israel
From political turmoil over the judicial reforms planned by the government of Benjamin Netanyahu to a slide in the value of the Shekel and a continuation in the downsizing of its firms, February was a tough month for Startup Nation Israel… Read More Here