Invest in Israel Newsletter – May 2012 Edition

As every month, VC Cafe is re-posting the “Invest in Israel” Newsletter, published by the investment promotion center of Israel’s Ministry of Industry, Trade and Labor, which offers many helpful tools for prospecting investors. For the Invest in Israel archive, click here. This month’s trend continues to be the acquisition of mature Israeli high tech companies by multinationals. Avaya, EMC and VMWare are following the footsteps of Facebook, eBay, Cisco and HP with Israeli acquisitions that become R&D centers. Great for them, good for Israel.

AVAYA ACQUIRES RADVISION
Global provider of business collaboration and communications solutions Avaya, based in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, recently announced its purchase of RADVISION for $230m. RADVISION was founded in 1992 in Israel and is a world leader in the supply of video conferencing solutions.

AEROSCOUT PURCHASED FOR $240M
Israel’s AeroScout, which develops chips that use RFID technology to track objects, animals and humans through Wi-Fi networks has been sold to an unnamed international infrastructure and services company for $240m. Founded in 1999, AeroScout’s products are used in hospitals to track patients and blood products, such as organs; to manage and monitor equipment in universities; and to keep tabs on products throughout the manufacturing process. The company’s customers include aircraft giant Boeing and more than 500 hospitals around the world.

EMC BUYS XTREMIO FOR $450M
EMC, the US firm whose software is used by companies to analyze their databases, has paid $450m to buy Israeli start-up XtremeIO. XtremeIO is a maker of flash memory storage technology, and will now become an R&D unit of EMC. EMC is headquartered in Hopkinton, Massachusetts with offices worldwide.

JAIN IRRIGATION SYSTEMS BUYS REMAINING 50% OF NAANDAN JAIN
Indian agricultural powerhouse Jain Irrigation Systems has recently agreed to purchase the remaining 50 percent of their jointly owned firm NaanDan Jain, a move that both view as a symbol of ever-expanding Indian-Israeli relations. Jain Irrigation became a joint owner of the original NaanDan irrigation firm in 2007, with a call option to acquire the second half of the company when both sides saw fit. “Israel has been a birthplace for water irrigation technologies. Not only a birthplace – it has been ahead of the curve,” said Anil Jain, managing director of Jain Irrigation.

INTEL TO OPEN $15M RESEARCH CENTER
Intel, the US semiconductor giant, has decided to establish a research center in Israel that will study the interaction between humans and technology. Called the Intel Collaborative Research Institute for Computational Intelligence, it will have a $15m, five year budget and bring together researchers from the Technion Institute of Technology and the Hebrew University. Justin Rattner, Intel’s corporate vice president and chief technology officer said: “The model for joint industry-university research is meant to strengthen the collaboration between Intel and the academy.”

VMWARE ACQUIRES WANOVA FOR $70-80M
Palo Alto, California-based VMware has purchased Israel’s Wanova for between $70-80 million. Wanova is a developer of intelligent desktop solutions, while VMware is a developer of virtualization infrastructures for cloud computing solutions. VMware will integrate Wanova’s operation into its existing R&D center in Herzlia which already employs 200 people.

CHINESE BANK OFFERS TO FUND ISRAELI SOLAR ENERGY PROJECTS
The China Development Bank has offered to finance Israeli solar energy projects, the first time that a foreign bank has expressed an interest in the sector. The bank is offering to finance mid-sized and large projects of up to 50 MW. As a condition for financing, the China Development Bank will require the venture to buy solar panels from Chinese manufacturer ET Solar, or for the company to build the project.

BURRILL & CO ESTABLISHES $200M ISRAEL LIFE SCIENCES FUND
At a ceremony in Jerusalem on May 24th, Burrill &Co, one of the world’s largest life sciences investment fund, unveiled a $200m fund to invest in Israeli life science companies. Burrill already manages $1.5 billion in venture capital and private equity funds. Based in San Francisco, California, the fund operates worldwide.

AGRITECH INVESTORS AND START-UPS GATHER AT AGRIVEST 2012
Close to 200 people gathered at Mikveh Israel, Israel’s first agricultural school, for the first Agrivest Summit on May 14, one day before the large-scale Agritech conference. A small group of carefully selected Israeli start-ups presented and met with investors in the field. Panel discussions provided the latest thoughts on current initiatives in the areas of food security, precision farming, hi-tech agricultural tools, deep sea fishing and biofuel, among many others. Agrivest Summit 2012 was organized by Israel NewTech, “Invest in Israel” and Mofet Venture Accelerator in association with Agritech 2012.

Eze Vidra
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Eze Vidra

Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote
Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Ezewas a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google's first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He's an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.
Eze Vidra
Follow me

Eze Vidra

Eze is the Chief Innovation Officer at Antidote, a startup helping patients search and match to clinical trial, to accelerate medical breakthroughs. Previously, Eze was a General Partner at Google Ventures Europe. Before GV, Eze founded and led Campus London, Google's first physical hub for startups, and was the Head Google for Entrepreneurs in Europe. He's an experienced product manager and startup mentor. In 2012 Eze founded Techbikers, a non-for profit supporting children education in developing countries.