While economic uncertainty and geopolitical issues present ongoing challenges, US-srael business continues to flourish, and the Southeast retains its position as one of the top centers in North America for this economic activity. Buoyed by its high tech sector, the Israeli economy has grown in strength, and the United States is a key beneficiary. Trends related to this phenomenon will be the focus of the August 20th Professional Seminar presented by the American-Israel Chamber of Commerce with the theme “Accelerating Southeast-Israel Growth: Mergers & Acquisitions, Investments and Partnerships.” The half-day seminar is designed specifically for businesses and professional firms, whether pursuing business or looking to increase their effectiveness with clients and customers. Participants will learn why Israel is a major force in our regional economy and how to get involved in this mutually beneficial activity through innovation, investment, legal considerations, business culture, trade, and M&A. The seminar will be held again at the Selig Center in Midtown Atlanta, from 7:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Organized by AICC’s Professional Committee, the half-day seminar is the organization’s premier annual educational event.
Shai Robkin, newly appointed President of the American Israel Chamber of Commerce, Southeast Region will be featured as the luncheon keynote speaker. He will share his unique perspectives on Southeast-Israel business opportunities and vision for taking the American-Israel Chamber to its next level as the most effective organization of its kind in North America. The seminar will also feature:
Israeli Headquarters Case Study: Caesarstone
Kibbutz Sdot Yam-based Caesarstone is the original quartz surface manufacturer and leader in its field. The NASDAQ traded company has a market cap of $1 billion. Caesarstone has committed to a new manufacturing operation in the US with production starting in late 2014, and will invest $75 million in the plant in addition to $13 million to expand its Israeli production lines. They recently announced a collaboration with IKEA USA to be its exclusive supplier of non-laminate. Yair Averbuch, CFO, will discuss the considerations guiding this manufacturing company as it selects its US location.
Israeli Company Presentation: LightApp Technologies
Herzliya Pituach-based LightApp has become the number one vendor for industrial energy management software, helping customers around the world manage and save on their energy consumption and costs as well as reduce risks. Real time data collection enables quick implementation and high quality and reliable data streaming in real time. LightApp’s CEO, Elhay Farkash, will present the company, its journey to the US market, and focus on Atlanta and the Southeast. A panel of experts will highlight legal, regulatory, and financial opportunities and challenges that LightApp will face.
M&A Case Study: SintecMedia / Argo Systems
Jerusalem-based SintecMedia acquired Atlanta-based Argo Systems in January. The deal brought together SintecMedia’s powerful OnAir® scalable, all-in-one broadcast management solution for media companies and its line of related products with Argo Systems’ unparalleled management solutions exclusively designed for Pay TV channels and multichannel video distributors. Bradley Reznik, SintecMedia’s Director of Client Services, will discuss the benefits to both sides of the deal and the challenges of integrating an Atlanta technology company with its new Israeli parent company.
Capital Funding and Investment Models for Israeli Companies Seeking to Enter the U.S./Southeast Market
Israeli companies are on the cutting edge of innovation, and seeking capital to establish their US market operations including partnerships. American investors are recognizing exceptional opportunities for returns with Israeli companies. Yet there are gaps and new ways of facilitating these bi-national investments to meet capital funding needs. AICC has created a new online “marketplace” to screen Israeli companies seeking investment and bringing them to the attention of Southeast angel and other investors. Randall Foster, chairman of the Chamber’s Capital Funding Committee, will present this new mechanism to help grow Israeli companies in our region. Viola Partners is one of Israel’s most experienced funds, attracting investors from throughout the world interested in high returns and participating in Israel’s exciting growth. The fund’s managing partner, Eylon Penchas, will share their model and the needs within Israel to support start ups and mature companies. The BIRD Foundation is a bi-national fund that supports joint venture research & development projects between US and Israel companies. Former AICC president and Southeast representative for BIRD, Tom Glaser, will present this model of investing that benefits both Israel and our region.
Israeli Investment and Partnership in the Southeast Real Estate Market
Within the swings of economic cycles, the Southeast is again a prime real estate region and ripe for investment. On the other side of the spectrum, Israel is a growing economy with a great deal of capital and not much space to deploy it, which makes Israelis perfect investors for the Southeast. A major real estate developer in the Southeast, the RADCO Companies, has purchased multiple properties with backing from Israeli investors, usually distressed multifamily properties where it is easy to show the path to profit. Norman Radow, CEO, will share his perspectives on how to attract and build trust with Israeli investors.
Cost for participation is $90 for members and $100 for non-members. To register, click here. Professional continuing education credits can be earned by attorneys and accountants. Sponsorships are also available for $750. Corporate sponsors include BDO, Berman Fink Van Horn, Porter Keadle Moore, Consulate General of Israel, Applied Economics, Friedman Dever & Merlin, SunTrust, Williams Benator & Libby, Israel Economic Office to the US South, Smith, Gambrell & Russell, and The Coca Cola Company. Organizational co-sponsors include American Israel Educational Institute, Atlanta Bar Association – International Transactions Section, Georgia Department of Economic Development, Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta, Metro Atlanta Chamber – Global Commerce Council, Georgia Chamber of Commerce – International Advisory Council, Southern Capital Forum, World Chamber of Commerce, and TAG.