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Opsys featured in Automotive News: "Israel carves a place as automotive tech powerhouse"

Updated: Jul 6, 2023

Until recently Israel had more startups on the NASDAQ than any other country in the world outside of the US. For a country with only a population size of approximately 9M this is a remarkable feat when you think about it. Only recently was Israel beaten by China, a country with 1.4B. As such, Israel has often been dubbed as the 'Startup Nation' or 'The Silicon Wadi'.

A more recent phenomena, is that transportation has become one of Israel's Hi-Tech industry's most valuable exports. This may seem surprising, given there are only approximately 4M cars on the road. If you've ever driven in Israel, you'll know that the roads are very hectic - you'll feel like you're in a dodgem car at a fairground and leave thanking your lucky stars you only had near-miss accidents! This, however, is not necessarily the reason that transportation technology has now become so important to the Israeli economy.

It is more likely that Israeli startups are trying to follow in the footsteps of two of their country's automotive technology unicorns, Waze (bought in 2013 by Google for $996M) and Mobileye (acquired by Intel in 2017, with a current market cap of $35B) .

Startup Nation

The must-read for anyone interested in the general phenomenon of Israel's economic miracle is Start-Up Nation.

This best selling book addresses the question of how it could be that a tiny country, which is approximately the size of Wales, (despite the perception in terms of its column inches!) with a small population and only a few decades old, surrounded by enemies, in a constant state of war since its founding, with no natural resources managed to produce more start-up companies per capita than large, peaceful, and stable nations and regions.

The authors of the book, Dan Senor and Saul Singer, cite two main reasons for Israel's success in this aspect: immigration and mandatory military service.

Jerry Hirsch, Mobility Editor at Automotive News interviewed our Executive Chairman - Board of Directors, Eitan Gertel to get a deeper understanding of the roots of this bourgeoning automotive industry in Israel. Eitan explained how the army contributes to creating so many entrepreneurs...

"They're running small groups. They're managing projects... They develop technology for specific targets in the most efficient way. They get budgets. It is very entrepreneurial. People come out of that environment and look to transfer their knowledge to civilian applications...

Israel also benefits from access to capital you have an environment in Tel Aviv where you can see 10 VCs in one day... The access to venture capital resources is pretty immediate, at least the seed stage round," Eitan explains.

Read the full article here


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