Ireland, Poland, and other countries have shown interest in setting up an innovation search engine similar to what Start-up Nation Central has created in Israel, the Israeli nonprofit organization said on Thursday as it released a new version of its database of Israel’s technology ecosystem.
SNC aims to connect Israeli startup firms to corporations, governments and NGOs around the world, and its “Finder” platform includes thousands of Israeli innovation companies of all sizes, business models, industry verticals, and technologies that are searchable and contactable by outside users.
Over the past 18 months, global exposure to the Israeli ecosystem through the Finder has increased significantly, with current online traffic of 60,000 monthly visitors, SNC said in a statement. Half of the platform’s traffic comes from abroad, with the highest numbers coming from the US, India and the UK.
“We are able to see exactly what foreign users are looking for in the Israeli ecosystem, and we have seen that the most widely viewed sectors were cybersecurity, digital health, FinTech and Internet of Things,” said Guy Hilton, Start-Up Nation Central’s General Manager. “In many cases companies and governments want to come to Israel and find partners to innovate with, but don’t know how to navigate the Israeli ecosystem. Finder is their GPS for this.”
The Finder platform currently tracks some 5,600 active Israeli innovation companies. These are defined as business entities that pursue research and development (R&D) in Israel, offer an original, proprietary technology product which they have developed, and have a founding team that includes at least one Israeli citizen.
Also mapped are over 300 multinational R&D centers and innovation labs, and investors, including VCs, corporate VCs, private equity, and angel investors. Finder also maps where startups congregate: accelerators, incubators, hubs, and co-working spaces.
The upgraded Finder includes an improved advanced search, a new homepage with statistics and graphs about the Israeli tech ecosystem, and the ability to save specific information. It also now allows introductions; users can request to contact a company whereupon SNC staff validate the request and send it on to the company requested if relevant.
The Finder team — a group of 11 research analysts — adds around 150 new companies to the database per month, and reviews 1,000 companies per month to keep the platform current and accurate. There are also some 469 companies in stealth mode currently being tracked on Finder, SNC said. The platform allows the entrepreneurs themselves to update the data on their company pages, and all data is verified before publication.