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Finalists Announced for Eagle Star Israeli Company of the Year and Deal of the Year

Winners to be Named at June 12th Gala

The American-Israel Chamber of Commerce, Southeast Region (AICC), announced today the finalists for the 11th annual Eagle Star Awards Gala on June 12.  The event, which also commemorates AICC’s 20th anniversary, will be held at the Westin Atlanta Perimeter North hotel from 7:00 – 9:00 P.M. (7 Concourse Parkway, Atlanta, GA 30328).  Three companies, Alpha Omega, Amiad, and Shalag, will compete for the Israeli Company of the Year award.  Three transactions, Arris / BigBand Networks, IDEA Biomedical / MUSC, and Procter & Gamble / Teva, will compete for Deal of the Year.

The Eagle Star Gala is AICC’s community flagship event, honoring the people and companies who have contributed most to the Southeast-Israel business relationship.  In addition to awarding the Israeli Company of the Year and Deal of the Year, the Chamber will also recognize Robert Deutsch with the Chamber Founders Award and the Israel Economic Mission to the US South with the Community Partner Award.

Judges for the company awards include GlobalAtlanta President Phil Bolton, Emory Business School Professor Benn Konsynski, and Coca-Cola Company Global Operations Director Amy Levine Samuels. Legendary Israeli entrepreneur and investor Jonathan Medved will be the host keynote speaker for the event.

Israeli Company of the Year Finalists

  • Alpha Omega:  Nazareth Illit-based company with its US headquarters in Atlanta develops, manufactures and markets microelectrode recording and stimulation devices for neurosurgery and neuroscience.  Their products can be found in the best hospitals, universities, and research institutes around the world based on superior technology, service, and personal attention through a global professional sales and support team and network of worldwide  partners.  For the past 5 years, achieved profitability with a CAGR  of more than 15%, with employment growth in US office since it  was established in 2002, and with 38 employees worldwide.
  • Amiad: Galil Elyon-based company merged with Bet Zera-based Arkal and relocated their  US headquarters to a 40,000 sq. ft. office / warehouse / fabrication  facility in Mooresville, NC.  Produces equipment for filtration and water treatment, micro-irrigation and membrane protection, wastewater and potable water treatment.  Currently has 60 US employees with plans to      grow the business to $50 million by 2012.
  • Shalag: Kibbutz Shamir, Upper Galilee-based global producer of nonwovens with focus on the hygienic and wipes markets.  Using the most technological methods and professional know-how, they offer a wide product range using various fiber blends and calendar embossing patterns.  In 2010, invested $17 million in a new manufacturing facility in Oxford, NC, creating 42 jobs initially, with another $17 million investment in 2012 to bring on an additional line.  Total investments are now $54 million  with plant expansion of 60,000 sq. ft. and expectation of 75 employees by  end of year and up to 100 with the expansion of a third line.

Deal of the Year Finalists

  • Arris / BigBand Networks: Suwanee, GA-based Arris acquired BigBand Networks for $172 million in 2011. Founded in Tel Aviv in  1998, BigBand continues to maintain its R&D operations in Israel.  For several years, ARRIS has been interested in acquiring Israeli technology, having served as a major corporate  sponsor of the AICC-organized US-Israel Broadband Business Exchanges held in Atlanta in 2005 and 2006.  Previously, they partnered with  Modi’in-based Resolute Networks on a joint venture R&D project that  received a major grant from the BIRD Foundation.
  • IDEA Biomedical / MUSC: Rehovot-based IDEA Biomedical and Charleston-based Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) announced that they have completed the sale of IDEA Bio’s Hermes WiScan® system to MUSC’s Center for Drug Discovery.  The device is a breakthrough biological cell imaging desktop system that enables  researchers, at all levels, to run a wide variety of biological applications at the push-of-a-button, using an extremely easy-to-use (tablet-style) touch screen mechanism.  The company offers a base system that meets most research needs, and an additional set of modular packages like Live Cell, Object Mapping, and more.
  • Procter & Gamble / TevaProcter & Gamble and Israel-based Teva Pharmaceutical Industries created a joint venture, PGT Healthcare, to sell over-the-counter medicines that will combine Teva’s expertise in drug marketing with P&G’s expertise in branding to expand their presence in the $200 billion consumer healthcare industry.  In connection with the formation of the joint venture, P&G sold its OTC plants in Greensboro, NC, which produces Vicks, and in Phoenix, Arizona, which produces Metamucil.  It will transfer the employees of both plants to Teva which will be the manufacturer and supplier for the PGT Healthcare business and P&G’s North American OTC business.

The event website, www.eaglestargala.com, features all the event details, including information, company tables, and online ticket purchase.

Sponsors to date include DeutscheBank Alex.Brown and The InterTech Group (Gold Sponsors); Atlanta Jewish Times, GlobalAtlanta andAM1690 / Newstalk 1160 (Media Sponsors); Verint Systems, and The Coca-Cola Company(Silver Sponsor); BDO, Ernst & Young, Smith Gambrell & Russell, Given Imaging, Habif Arogeti & Wynne, Fish & Richardson, Jones Day, and Pull-A-Part(Bronze Sponsors);Aarons Grant & Habif, Baran, Ballard Spahr, Cresa, Georgia Ports Authority, Nelson Mullins, McGriff Seibels & Williams, Dale M. Schwartz & Associates, Israel Economic Mission to the Southern Region, and Consulate General of Israel (Patron Sponsors).  To view the sponsorship levels and benefits, click here.

Sponsorships are still available.  For further information on nominations and sponsorships, contact Barry Swartz barry@conexx.org or call 404-843-9426.

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