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. The highlight this month is the acquisition of social GPS app Waze, for reportedly $1.3 Billion, by Google (after Facebook dropped the ball). This has generated lots of excitement in Israel, as it shows the Israeli startup industry can produce world-level consumer products, on mobile.
GOOGLE BUYS ISRAELI START-UP WAZE FOR MORE THAN $1B
Google has agreed to acquire Israeli start-up Waze for a total purchase price exceeding $1 billion in cash. Waze’s research and development center will remain in Israel for at least three years. Waze will retain its independent identity both as a company and as a brand. Waze uses satellite signals from members’ smartphones to generate maps and traffic data, which it then shares with other users, offering real-time traffic info.
CISCO TO SETUP INNOVATION CENTER IN ISRAEL
Cisco, the giant U.S.-based network communications company, has announced it will be opening an innovation center in Israel. The center will research radio network configurations that address the problem of surges in demand for mobile Internet. The new center comes five months after Cisco acquired Intucell, a Raanana-based start-up that provides self-optimizing network technology designed to optimize the functioning of cellular networks. More recently, Cisco also acquired Ubiquisys, a company that specializes in small cellular sites.
LOCKHEED-MARTIN TO ESTABLISH COMPUTER CENTER IN ISRAEL
The U.S.’ largest defense contractor, Lockheed-Martin, is establishing a computer center in Israel jointly with Israel’s Binat. The center is expected to open sometime later this year and will provide software development support for the company.
MALWARE COMPANY FIREEYE LAUNCHING ISRAEL DEVELOPMENT CENTER
U.S.-based network security company FireEye is planning to launch a development center in Israel and to start selling its products locally. The company hired former McAfee Israel country manager Alik Haik to lead its local operations. The company offers dynamic malware protection against cyber threats that bypass traditional defenses.
TELEFLEX ACQUIRES MICROLAPAROSCOPY SURGICAL PLATFORM TECHNOLOGY
Pennsylvania’s Teleflex Inc., a leading global provider of medical devices for critical care and surgery, has acquired Israel’s Eon Surgical, Ltd., a late-stage development company that has advanced a minimally invasive microlaparoscopy surgical platform technology designed to enhance surgeons’ ability to perform scarless surgery while producing better patient outcomes.
ELBIT SYSTEMS OPENS BEERSHEVA INCUBATOR
Elbit Systems Ltd., one of Israel’s two biggest defense companies opened its technology incubator in Beersheva this month. The incubator, Incubit, will support more than 20 companies in fields synergetic with Elbit Systems’ businesses. Since winning the Office of the Chief Scientist tender to establish the incubator, Elbit examined at least 50 proposals from entrepreneurs. Most of the technologies proposed for inclusion in Incubit are related to Elbit Systems’ core businesses, including electro-optics; cyber and nanotechnology.
STRATASYS BUYS 3D PRINTING CO. MAKERBOT
3D printing developer has acquired New York desktop 3D printing company MakerBot. The two companies announced the signing of an agreement in which MakerBot will merge with Stratasys in an all share deal worth $403 million, and a further $201 million in performance payments through December 2014. MakerBot, founded in 2009, has developed the desktop 3D printing market and has built the largest installed base of 3D printers in the category. Stratasys, which is headquartered in Rehovot, makes higher-end 3D printers.