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Economic News from Israel

  • Ra’anana-based Amdocs has acquired mobile network optimization software provider, Actis International Ltd., for $120 million.  The acquisition will expand Amdocs’s CES portfolio with geo-located network data that will drive a variety of optimization use cases.  Amdocs is the Israeli company with the most employees in Atlanta.
  • Migdal Ha’emek-based Enzymotec, developer of a proprietary method for processing fatty acids (lipids), has filed a prospectus for a listing on Nasdaq with the intention to raise $75 million.  The company’s Vaya Pharma subsidiary maintains its US headquarters in Greenville, South Carolina.
  • Just two months since acquiring Tel Aviv-based Waze for $1 billion, Google has integrated Waze’s traffic reports in Google Maps and navigation apps for Android devices and iPhones.  The traffic updates are now offered in a large number of countries including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Ecuador, France, Germany, Mexico, Panama, Peru,      Switzerland, UK and the US.
  • Tel Aviv-based Avgol, has announced that it will build another production line in Russia at an investment of $60 million.  The producer of non-woven fabrics has its US production facility in Mocksville, North Carolina.
  • Orlando’s Celebration Health Hospital performed the world’s first deep brain stimulation operation using the Renaissance Guidance System of Caesaria-based Mazor Robotics.  The procedure improves the accuracy of the surgery to implant a small battery-operated medical device to deliver electrical stimulation to targeted areas of the brain      controlling movement, and can be effective in treating Parkinson’s disease.  The device was produced by another Israeli company, Alpha Omega, based in Nazareth Ilit with its US headquarters in Atlanta.
  • Tel Aviv-based Credorax has raised $40 million from FTV Capital.  The fintech company, a member of AICC, operates in the field of e-commerce with its payment clearing technology.
  • IBM has completed the acquisition of Tel Aviv-based Trusteer for $630 million.  This is the company’s largest ever acquisition in Israel, and will integrate Trusteer’s software solutions that help enterprises protect themselves from financial fraud and sophisticated security threats.
  • Herzliya-based Jacada, with its North American headquarters in Atlanta, has announced a
    global strategic partnership agreement with Cognizant Technology Solutions, a global leader in enterprise consulting solutions and outsourcing services.  Under the partnership, Cognizant will incorporate Jacada’s customer service technology solutions into their global delivery network to provide complete solutions to simplify customer interaction.
  • Bnei Brak-based Fring Ltd. has been acquired by US multimedia and cloud communications company GENBAND for a reported $50 million.  The mobile instant messaging company has developed Over-the-Top mobile IP communications services which work on all major smartphone platforms.  Investors have included two Israeli VCs—Pitango and Veritas Venture Partners that has its US office in Atlanta.
  • Beersheva dedicated its new high-tech park at the end of August.  The Gav Yam Industrial Park Negev is owned by IDB Holding’s Bayside Land Corp., Beersheva Municipality, Ben Gurion University, and KUD, a consortium of US and Japanese investors.  In July, Prime Minister Netanyahu declared Beersheva the national cyber center.
  • On the eve of Rosh Hashana 5774, Israel’s population reached 8.08 million including 6.07 Jews, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.  Arabs totaled 1.67 million, and other groups totaled 345,000 people.
  • Israel came in 4th in a ranking of countries with the most efficient health care based on life expectancy, relative per capita cost of health care, and the absolute per capita cost of health care. The UK came in 14th, Canada 17th, Iran 45th, and the US 46th.
  • Three Israeli universities were ranked among the world’s top 100 with Hebrew University at 59th, Technion at 77th, and Weizmann Institute at 92nd.  The study was done by Shaghai Jiao Ton University’s Academic Ranking of World Universities for 2013.
  • The Israeli economy grew by 5.1% in the 2nd quarter compared to 2.7% in the 1st quarter and 3.1% in Q4 2012, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics.
  • Tel Aviv was named the world’s second best city for tech start ups after Silicon Valley in California, according to a study by Startup Genome for the Boston Globe.  The city was said to have the highest density of tech start ups in the world.
  • Israel’s unemployment rate rose to 6.9% of the civilian labor force in the 2nd quarter of 2013 from 6.6% in the 1st quarter.
  • An all-time July record for Israeli tourism was set this year with 246,000 tourists entering the country according to the Ministry of Tourism.  This marked a 2% increase from the previous July and a 4% jump from July 2011.

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