Samsung subsidiary Harman sees Israel as key to autotech strategy, CEO says
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Samsung subsidiary Harman sees Israel as key to autotech strategy, CEO says

Harman president and CEO Dinesh Paliwal inaugurates new 46,000-sq. ft. headquarters in Israel, home to new smart-car lab

Oren Betzaleli, Country Manager - HARMAN Israel, right; Yuval Weisglass, Vice President Automotive Cybersecurity - HARMAN, center. and  HARMAN President and CEO, Dinesh C. Paliwal at the opening if the firm's new headquarters in Hod Hasharon (Oren Tesler)
Oren Betzaleli, Country Manager - HARMAN Israel, right; Yuval Weisglass, Vice President Automotive Cybersecurity - HARMAN, center. and HARMAN President and CEO, Dinesh C. Paliwal at the opening if the firm's new headquarters in Hod Hasharon (Oren Tesler)

Harman International Industries Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. focused on connected technologies for the automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, on Monday opened a new 46,000-square foot (4,273-square meter) facility that will be the base of all of its activities in Israel.

Located in Hod Hasharon, in central Israel, the three-story building facility will serve as the headquarters for Harman in Israel. It hosts a smart-car lab, where teams can research, test and validate the company’s cybersecurity, software and automotive cloud solutions in real-life conditions, the company said in a statement on Monday.

Harman’s existing research and development (R&D) centers in Kfar Saba, Hod Hasharon and Ramat Gan will now be consolidated under one roof, in the new center.

Harman president and CEO Dinesh Paliwal inaugurated the new center, where he spoke about the importance of enabling Harman’s growth in Israel.

“We are now preparing for the next phase of growth — connected vehicles and automated driving — and the entrepreneurial spirit and innovations taking place in Israel play an instrumental part in this strategy,” said Paliwal.

Paliwal, who was invited to deliver the keynote address at the Annual Smart Mobility Summit in Tel Aviv, will use the opportunity to meet with emerging Israeli automotive and mobility firms during his visit, the company said in a statement.

“As an innovation leader, we have built strong teams across the globe. From India to US, and from Israel to China, our teams in both developed and emerging markets, are creating the future of connectivity,” Paliwal said. He said the firm can capitalize on the “diverse strength of our workforce,” and its relationship with Samsung, to be a strong player in the fields it operates.

Harman is expanding its workforce in Israel, the statement said, and its local innovation hubs are already home to a team of senior engineers developing technologies including for autonomous, connected and augmented reality platforms.

“We are continuously searching for the highest quality professionals in the field, and it was important to us that all of Harman employees work in one location, as they are collaborating to develop products and solutions that contribute to the future of the automotive industry,” said Oren Betzaleli, the country manager of Harman Israel.

The Samsung subsidiary has acquired three Israeli startups in the last five years: Ramat Gan-based iOnRoad, which develops augmented reality (AR) for cars; Hod Hasharon-based Red Bend Software, which enables cars to be connected to the cloud; and Kfar Saba-based TowerSec Automotive Cybersecurity.

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