Israel: 054-321-6176 / USA - 210-820-3070 alan@weinkrantz.com

Hub Etzion expands Greater Jerusalem’s options as place to work, build & create

Aout 15 miles outside of Jerusalem, Rachel Moore and Amy Gottlieb Shuter are building out a way cool hub in Gush Etzion. They represent entrepreneurs who have families, need a place to work, be close to home, yet have access to the big city of Jerusalem when they needed to be there. The building they are in is state of the art. I’ve been there for a sneak preview. They are located in what is basically the most important town in biblical history, no matter what you do or don’t believe in. They are down the road a piece from Bethlehem, and a short bus ride from the Nation’s Capital, Jerusalem. They are part of the greater Made in Jerusalem community and you’ve got some great service providers and startups already camping out in the initial phases of the build out. Help Support Their Indiegogo Campaign They’ve just launched a new Indiegogo campaign to help support the final build out of the project. Talk about something of biblical proportions… I hope you will join me in bringing this initiative to fruition....

EuropeanPioneers Accelerator Program Offers Up To €250,000 For Startups; No Equity – Deadline is June 22

If you are an Israel-based startup, I want you to consider applying for theEuropeanPioneers Accelerator program. You can find the applicationhere. But you have to hustle. The deadline is June 22. I recently connected with Martin Weber who heads the Berlin-based, eight-month program and he shared the details with me. The objective of the program is to accelerate the development of SMEs and web entrepreneurs in the media and content sector in Europe. Focus is on startups in the areas of Smart City, Gaming, Education and Connected Screens. Israeli startups are encouraged to apply. If you are accepted, you will not only receive up to €250,000 – with no equity taken – but you will be connected to the platform and technologies of FIWARE –that will help you in your product development. There is no physical co-working space. And you don’t have to move to Berlin to apply and be accepted. You can stay in Israel, take advantage of the program, and infrastructure and programming they are offering. You’ll join the physical accelerator every 6-8 weeks for very intense training days, which includes mentoring, coaching, business modeling and support with entering the German market. EuropeanPioneers was funded by the European Commission and is run by company builder etventure. Successful startups of the first cohort areTobyRich (launching Germany’s first Kickstarter Campaign) andLivecoding.tv, who gained amazing traction on Mashable and VentureBeat. This Friday, I am headed to Berlin on behalf of the Rackspace Startupsprogram. I am looking for ways to further align Israel and Germany’s startup ecosystems. EuropeanPioneers is just an example of what is available to our ecosystem – and...

The Parallel Universe of Israel’s Startup Economy

When I speak to people about the startup ecosystem of Israel, the default reference is Tel Aviv, followed by some degree, to Jerusalem. Logically speaking it makes total sense, if not by the sheer number of startups, but by the supporting actors and service providers, the media and of course the money sources — VCs and angels who invest. There other three other cities that also matter, namely Nazareth, Haifa, and Be’er Sheva — the later of which is starting to get sexy because of the transition of the military and the cyber security industry that is following it.The Wall Street Journal’s Orr Hirschague covers the storyhere. Lately, I have been spending time in Nazareth and Haifa, discovering and working in the ecosystem where I just returned from spending two insightful and inspiring days in Haifa with a group of Israeli / Arab entrepreneurs as we prepared for Presentense Group’s NaserahTech Launch night event on June 16. Over the weekend, I deep-dived into startups focused on image processing, empowering and changing lives through a new approach to family finances, another — a platform for building better interpersonal relationships, personal home automation, an app that helps patients better manage and optimize the prescription medicine doses and timing and more. One-third of the teams were women, something I rarely, if ever do I see in Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. Not one company has brought up an exit — something rare. They all are set on building, and doing something compelling. Creating something out of nothing. The focus of all of our discussion are about building and creating something of value, and filling a void. In some cases, the ideas for...

Nazareth Startups Are Coming to Rock Tel Aviv – May 27 / Please Join Us

In my role as being the Israel Brand Ambassador for the Rackspace Startups Program, I travel all over Startup Nation, visit and hang my hat at just about every accelerator / workspace, and most of all, get to meet very inspiring and great entrepreneurs. Lately, I have been spending time in Nazareth under the guidance of Entrepreneur in Residence at StarTau (Tel Aviv University Entrepreneurship Center) Giuseppe Calo’ and Fadi Swidan, Co-Founder and Co-Organizer at Nazareth Accelerator. On May 27, they are bringing a select group of 12 startups to Tel Aviv for the first ever, Nazareth Startups Rock Tel Aviv event starting at 6:00 PM. I’ve personally had a chance to work with, help mentor, and help the entrepreneurs work on their pitches.   We are going to have some wonderful speakers, and there will be several government dignitaries in attendance. I love drinking coffee with Fadi, hanging out on his office balcony which overlooks the Basilica of the Annunciation. While there is no shortage of startup events here in Israel, this one is different because you will be able to get a glimpse of the future, and what is going on in the north of the country, without having to travel. I look for undercurrents and write about them in my columns in The Times of Israel Startup section (big shout out to David Shamah who gave me this opportunity). So there’s this undercurrent going on here… The U.S. State Department is paying attention to this event,  and is making a strategic investment in some of the programming here through its The U.S.-Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI).   It’s also an...

Video Briefing from StartUp Nation: BMW Launches New Startup Garage

In my role as Brand Ambassador to Israel for the Rackspace Startups Program, I get to go all over country to meet, connect, and mentor at the various accelerators and workspaces that dot the land of Startup Nation. Early into my being here, I connected with Boaz Mamo who serves as the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Ecomotion, which manages theSmart Transportation Accelerator as part of the Israel Innovation Institute. Boaz Mamo — Ecomotion Boaz and his team not only run the program, but do so as a joint venture of the Prime Minister’s Office (Fuel Choices Initiative),Ministry of Science, Keren Hayesod and the Israeli Automotive and High-Tech industry. The idea here is to build an interdisciplinary community that is soley focused on Smart Transportation, stimulating multiple solutions in R&D and entrepreneurship, and developing smart transportation. As with most programs, Ecomotion held an event that not only included a pitch night for their startups, but also featured demonstrations of transportation innovation from early stage startups to U.S. auto giant,General Motors, which, like more than 250 other major corporations from around the world, maintain an R&D center in Israel. Held at the Peres Center for Peace in the port city of Jaffa, I met Gregor Gimmy, Founder and Head of the BMW Startup Garage.  Gregor Gimmy / BMW Startup Garage Presentation at Ecomotion Main Event — April 27, 2015 — Jaffo (Tel Aviv) Here in Israel, I have seen companies like Coke and Citi setting up shop here, scouting for talent, innovation, and just plain smarts. In the case of BMW, they are looking for startups who want to come to Germany, have access to what...