Israel Research Tour - a summary

By Howard Rubin, Frederique Depuis-Toubol


Read day one summary

Read day two summary

Read day three summary

Read day four summary

Day four

Israel Research Tour - day four

The final day of the research tour was hosted by Viola Growth Partners in the Hertsyla district of Tel Aviv. Viola Growth is an Israeli-based technology growth capital fund, focusing on investing in global companies at expansion phase. They shared a handpicked selection of companies from their portfolio, which included:

  • A clickstream analysis company that analyses 1% of all internet data across all devices and makes extrapolations for marketers, market researchers, sales teams and investors providing speed to insight. A trusted name within Wall Street, this solution enables visibility of competitive data such as volume of consumer searches by country and use of keywords, marketing messages and display ads.
  • A company who assists marketers increase revenue by personalising customer interactions across web, mobile web, mobile apps and email. Through a demonstration they identified how with a full suite of personalisation and engagement solutions companies redressing the balance of focus so it is as much on customer conversion as customer acquisition.
  • A next generation business analytics company that promotes data innovation for end users without losing control and security, ending the information dictatorship and the silo-epidemic. By combining an erudite and cohesive architecture, strong end user centric governance with a modern UI/UX and new data flows this allows full use of exotic AI algorithms and the solution provides a paradigm shift on how to perform business analytics.
  • A cyber security company providing a holistic approach to early threat detection and response for digital businesses. With digital companies being a lucrative target for hackers seeking personal, payment and bank data, a breach not only can cause a compliance issue but also impact brand reputation and customer experience. By taking an automated outside-in approach providing early visibility of threats, control can be taken early through integration with users internal systems resulting in a fast, managed response.

Many thanks to Eran Westman at Viola for an extremely insightful day.

Today concluded the Israel Research tour with the past four days providing delegates an opportunity to explore the interesting technology centric economy of Israel, while making introductions with a number of exciting Israel based tech companies who are creating new innovative business solutions through technology.

Thank you to Ntegra for the completion of another successful research tour.

Israel research tour - group image

Day three

Day Three of the Israel Research tour took us to Jerusalem where we were hosted by two Jerusalem based VC’s, JVP & Our Crowd.

JVP who currently invest in over 120 companies in Israel, the US and Europe gave an insight into their approach to investment, explaining that of the 1000+ companies they see investments are made in approximately 6-8 per year, giving an indication of the level of quality of their companies. Their approach focuses more on company builders rather than pure investors, taking concepts from academia and combining this with commercial expertise.

Israel research tour - day three JV Play

This was followed by presentations from four tech companies, which included:

  • A cyber security company launched only 6 months ago specialising in vulnerability trend detection. Their methodology is based on prediction, prioritisation and then protection which results in no requirement for patching, access to source code and a significantly greater ability to be able to predict any vulnerabilities within applications. Their mantra was to “Predict the next trend instead of chasing the next thief”.
  • A next generation data science platform, which can be used to scale AI and data science development, originally developed by a team of data scientists as an internal tool to help speed up their own processes, it has now been commercialised. This technology helps scientists work faster without worrying about configuration, allowing the data scientist to focus on the magic they are doing with algorithms and their ability to launch 100’s of experiments with a single click.
  • A company specialising in low cost security for small to medium enterprises, enabling enterprise grade security to be accessed by everyone, this solution is cloud based, is AI managed therefore requiring no human invention and is able to deliver enterprise level security within 15 minutes of installation. The platform also takes data from public infrastructure networks and highlights potential threats to any of their 2.3million users.
  • A company developed from engineers behind the Israeli border control systems that take on the challenge of GDPR and privacy regulation through the use of technology. They have a unique approach to addressing the challenges faced by CIO & Data Protection Officers which is enabling an organisation to identify which elements of their network are processing personal data and then take actions accordingly. This solution cuts significantly cuts down response time to personal data requests.

Our Crowd the leading crowd investing platform for accredited investors followed on from these presentations by giving an overview of their role in the Israeli start-up eco-system showcasing highlights and success stories from their significant portfolio of investments, this included:

  • How augmented reality drone technology has moved from gaming to providing intelligence to first responders in emergencies.
  • The simplifying of the interface to technology can help the elderly who live alone easily maintain contact with their friends and family as well as providing them with a personal companion at home.
  • As well as how real time video can be compressed to create a visual tagged index to easily identify key moments, especially useful in surveillance.

The day concluded with a walking tour of old Jerusalem by a Mancunian by the name of Yossi, where Jerusalem's history was explored through visiting the significant and interesting sites of old Jerusalem.

Israel research tour - day three Israel flag

Day two

Day two of the Israel Research tour was hosted by Barnea & Co a leading Israeli law firm, taking place at their offices in the southern part of Tel Aviv in Nave Sha'anan district on the 21st floor overlooking the Mediterranean. Barnea's Managing partner Micky Barnea gave an introduction into their role in the Israeli tech ecosystem. Describing Israel as the "Silicon Wadi" Mikey believes that the military influences and competitive culture of the Israeli people are key to its success in the technological innovation.

Israel research tour - day two LinkedIn

The morning presentations saw presenters from Israeli based companies covering a wide range of subject matters including:

  • A live demonstration from a digital engagement company showing how customer channels can be converted into a digital channel either by replacing or complementing the customer interaction. Simply by placing a call on a mobile phone with a call centre, a digital experience can be initiated that drives better conversion for high value transactions or is able to reduce the cost of servicing low value transactions.
  • A more established Israeli company with a suite of products covering static analysis of code, zero day vulnerability discovery and automated scanning & risk management showcased a tool for delivering security assessments with a goal of “finding weaknesses before the bad guys do”.
  • A computer vision and natural language processing start up demonstrated how their technology can be used to break an image of an object into fields therefore enabling advanced searching capabilities. With a background in Israeli Intelligence, they provide a B2B service for e-commerce platforms transforming the online shopping experience and demonstrating a 20% uplift in conversions.
  • Our final morning presentation was of a tool that provides data science as a service, showing how the latest machine learning models and how they can be accessed by existing teams of data scientists. By closing the gap in expertise and capability AI can be used to augment the skills of data scientist to answer questions faster and with higher accuracy and faster, meeting the demands and expectation of the boardroom.

Continuing the afternoon at Barnea our delegates saw six presentations from a variety of Israeli tech companies including:

  • An AI driven content marketing platform using AI, NLP and machine learning to curate relevant and personalised content for audiences across the web. This platform brings technology and content together, categorising, prioritising and determining the best content for their users in order to drive increased engagement & lead generation.
  • Proxy technology which provides transparency to the web, with websites today showing personalised content based on the individual user this proxy technology gives the ability to bypass this and instead give full visibility through the vast network of global IP addresses. It can produce 3.5 million unique IP addresses ranging from residential to datacentres. This can be used for a variety of solutions including spotting ad fraud and supply of complete competitor pricing information.
  • A VR presentation solution described as the "new Powerpoint", that allows users to create and manage VR presentations in minutes without the costly agency design. The program turns any 2D content into 360 environment view and works across all operating systems and VR headsets, while providing real-time control over content streamed to headsets.
  • A digital transformation solution for spreadsheets, founded in a Microsoft incubator, this solution converts spreadsheets from a collection of individual documents into a database. Giving the ability to database spreadsheets in real time and keep a change audit trail at a cell level, allowing business greater ability to provide control and compliance of spreadsheets.
  • A Science first relationship marketing hub, that allows marketing professionals to build relationships with existing customers more effectively benefiting renewal and retention. The platform allows a marketer to put a specific value on the retention work being carried out and gives the ability for marketing plans across all digital channels to optimise in real-time based on statically analysis of performance.
  • An autonomous customer service platform driving better customer experience by providing customer service centres with a suite of capabilities. Resulting in a decrease in the quantity of interactions with live agents as interactions are automated where possible.

Israel research tour - day two

Many thanks to Micky Barnea and the rest of the team at Barnea for hosting us for the day.

The day closed by visiting the private residence of the British Ambassador to Israel, David Quarry, where a number of the UK Israel Tech Hub teams where met and keynotes were delivered by David Quarry and our own delegate Mike Stone from KPMG.

Day one

The Israel Reseach tour organised by Ntegra in partnership with Bird & Bird and Barnea & Co Commenced in Tel Aviv. Bird & Bird Partners Howard Rubin and Frederique Dupuis-Toubol are joined by delegates from Baillie Gifford, Casual Dining Group, Coventry University, KPMG, My Home Move, Ntegra, Superdry and South Bay Connections for a 4 day research tour where they will be introduced to over 25 Israel based tech companies.

The Israel Research tour group image

This is Ntegra's first research tour to take place in Israel, as it is one of the most interesting technology centric economies in the world, with the second largest tech start-up scene and supporting ecosystem, second only to Silicon Valley.

The business program commenced on Monday 5th, with the morning session being hosted at the Deloitte Innovation Tech Terminal in the Azrieli Towers in Tel Aviv, here Arod Balissa explained the background to Israel’s emergence as a global tech hub with more tech start-ups and Venture Capital firms per capita than any other in the world.

Israel based companies, the first end-to-end signal processing-based artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning platform and Dataloop,  a one-stop-shop platform for developing visual recognition applications provided very informative presentations covering AI and how it can:

  • deliver a competitive edge through analytics and signal processing to deliver previously impossible levels of accuracy, stability and performance to drive better insights
  • improve timings and cost for visual data processing
  • unburden legal departments from reviewing high volume low value contracts

The afternoon session took place on the 61st floor of the Azrieli Sarona Tower, the building where Amazon have setup their Alexa voice shopping R&D centre. The retail tech specialists The Shelf, a top global tech hub for retail gave an insightful presentation on how Israel is a AI superpower across all different types of data sets and is channelling its expertise into the retail vertical, with both Jeff Bezos and Jack Ma visiting in the last 12 months to explore how they can leverage Israeli start-up tech further.

The Israel Research tour - LAB image

Start ups coming out of the Shelf are building technology to help a business’s bottom line, The Shelf shared numerous examples of creative business problem solving using technology and provided a very useful map of the Israeli Retail tech landscape.

Following this the delegates received presentations from a number of companies within The Shelf portfolio whose technology includes:

  • Visual search technology which essentially makes any image instantly shoppable and provides the ability to search for products based on posts from influencers and models. They are already working with a number of large UK & Global retailers and have been replacing traditional recommendation based ecommerce tools with “Show similar”. The company have the largest visual search marketplace through partnerships that were already in place with two mobile manufacturer giants.
  • A platform which democratises data usage across an enterprise by automating data management and making enterprise analytics agile. The technology puts a business in charge of its own data giving the agility of a start-up with security and governance of large enterprise systems.
  • An ecommerce analytics platform that was able to identify that a well known online marketplace was producing a $40 million loss which could have been avoided simply by adding a pre-order page to one of their upcoming SKU’s. This platform provides brands and retailers with the detailed path to purchase analytics for ecommerce highlighting funnel breakage points along with analysis on what other products were considered along the way.

The first day has provided valuable infomation and a number of interesting insights, thankyou to all who presented.