Nowadays, there are lots of start-up events in Israel where new companies have the opportunity to give their five-minute elevator pitches to investors. But not many can sport as a headline speaker Dr. Abdul Malik Al-Jaber, formerly the head of Paltel, one of the two mobile service companies in the Palestinian Authority, and now head of MENA Apps.
That, said Ed Frank, is one of the things that makes the start-up events sponsored by his Bootcamp Ventures different. BV’s upcoming show in Tel Aviv this week, he told The Times of Israel, “will have investors from 20 countries, coming to see companies that we have vetted, and that offer serious value to investors.” Besides the show in Israel, BV runs programs in places like Turkey, France, and Eastern Europe, said Frank, “making us one of the more well-connected organizations internationally, attracting investors who would probably otherwise not have come to check out Israeli start-ups.”
BV’s Israel “innovation exchange,” called iX TLV 2013, provides a forum for 20 promising Israeli startups from the fields of digital media, mobile and e-commerce, health tech, IT, and more to reach out to investors from across Europe, the US, Singapore, and even Turkey. Panels featuring top investors and experts from the mobile, Internet and media spaces will discuss topics such as creating a winning start-up team, how to find the start-up that will make money, and how investor strategies stack up against each other.
The main attraction: the start-ups themselves, which will make several pitches during the two days of the event, hoping to win the title of Most Compelling Investor Pitch. There’s no prize other than the title, but the winning team is likely to be inundated with requests from investors for one-on-one meetings.
This is the fifth year BV has been running the Israeli Bootcamp event, and this year iX TLV 2013, with about 200 investors in attendance, is being sponsored in conjunction with the Peres Center for Peace, which is also providing a venue for the event. “We have companies from the Israeli Arab sector represented as well, and we are seen by many in the investment community as helping to bridge the gaps in Israeli society,” said Frank.
That’s the kind of thing that attracts people like Al-Jaber, who has worked extensively with the Israeli start-up community. At this year’s DLD (Digital Life Design) event in Munich last January, Al-Jaber appeared on a panel hosted by Israel’s Yossi Vardi, whom he called “my godfather in the high-tech world.” Al-Jaber discussed the growth of the Middle Eastern market (his investment firm, MENA apps, stands for Middle East/North Africa), telling investors that the region is the next big growth area for mobile. “Seventy percent of the population in this region are under 34, and the growth rate in the use of smartphones is higher here than anywhere else. Any company that is not working in the MENA region is losing out,” Al-Jaber said at the DLD event.
His address at iX TLV 2103 is titled “Accelerating Innovation in the Middle East/North Africa.”
|Like us on Facebook||Get our newsletter||Follow us on Twitter|