ISRAEL - High-Tech Firms Raise $6.4 Billion in 2018

Arno Froese

Israeli hi-tech companies raised a record $6.4 billion in 623 financial deals in 2018, marking a sixth consecutive year of record growth in capital raising, according to data published by IVC Research Center and ZAG S&W Zysman, Aharoni, Gayer & Co.

While the number of deals decreased slightly from 661 in 2017, the total capital raised was 17% higher. Since 2013, annual hi-tech funding has soared by some 120%.

Following the trend of recent years, deals below $5 million continued to decrease, while deals exceeding $20 million continued to grow. Larger deals have almost quadrupled since 2013, and were worth a total of $4.1 billion in 2018—some 63% of the total funds raised.

The final quarter of 2018 saw a record 34 deals worth more than $20 million each, valued in total at $1.3 billion.

“2018 was a busy year for Israeli hi-tech capital raising,” said Marianna Shapira, research director at IVC Research Center.

“Most of the capital was raised by well-established software companies with annual revenues of up to $10m. in the verticals of AI and cyber security. The term ‘wealth attracts money’ describes the continued investment trend in Israel, as in the US,” she said.

Life sciences deals, dominated by medical device companies, remained stable at $1.2 billion across 126 deals.

“A surprising and different factor is the trade war between China and the US: when those two are quarreling, Israeli companies are the ones that profit. Israeli hi-tech companies have become the indirect route of Americans to China, and of the Chinese to the US.”

-www.jpost.com, 9 January 2019

Arno's commentary

Israel’s workforce is incomparable to the rest of the world. All Israeli citizens over the age of 18 must serve in the military. Under the 1949 law, the service period for men was 30 months and 18 months for women. Although the conscription is compulsory, there is a significant percentage of the population who do not enlist for various reasons. But the bulk of Israel’s population must report for military duty. That fact alone gives Israel a tremendous advantage over all other nations in the world. Israel is actually being threatened by some of its neighbors such as Hezbollah in Lebanon or Hamas in the south, in Gaza. Syria has no peace treaty with Israel and has no intention to do so in the foreseeable future, but behind it all stands Iran, which continues to call for the destruction of the Jewish State. That fact unifies Israelis more than anything else. Every Israeli knows that their nation, with a population of about eight million, is only a tiny little spot on the world map, when compared with the Arab League, consisting of 22 Arab nations, with a total population of over 300 million. The Arab League countries stretch from the Atlantic Ocean in the west to the Indian Ocean in the east, and covers 5.25 million square miles, while Israel covers not even 10,000 square miles.

For all practical reasons, Israel’s existence in the heart of the Arab world is nothing short of a miracle.

But there is God, “Fear not, thou worm Jacob, and ye men of Israel; I will help thee, saith the Lord, and thy redeemer, the Holy One of Israel” (Isaiah 41:14). That’s unique too, for the nations of the world use the powerful and strong animals such the elephant, bear, lion, tiger, eagle, etc. as national symbols. But worm, a defenseless creature that fishermen put on a hook as bait? Yet this little country is destined to be superior to all other nations in the world. Deuteronomy 14:2 proclaims: “For thou art an holy people unto the Lord thy God, and the Lord hath chosen thee to be a peculiar people unto himself, above all the nations that are upon the earth.” That is Israel’s destiny, and that’s why we see—already now—their brilliance, inventiveness, and intellect helping them climb the ladder to world leadership.

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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