Fund reaches over $13 million in capital commitments
8 companies slated to receive investments this month
JERUSALEM, December 20, 2023 – OurCrowd, a leading global digital investment platform, today announced the first close of its $50 million Israel Resilience Fund, with more than $13 million in capital commitments, and approved the first 8 investments from the fund. OurCrowd will waive all management fees and carried interest as a contribution to Israel’s current wartime emergency. The fund, which was first announced just 40 days ago, becomes one of the fastest-closing venture funds ever to go from conception to closure and 8 actual investments, according to OurCrowd.
The Israel Resilience Fund aims to focus on 50+ startups directly affected by the crisis, or developing critical solutions related to the security situation, including environmental impact, emergency medicine, food security, cybersecurity, media monitoring, reconstruction, and other verticals. The fund has an Advisory Board of global tech and investment leaders.
Numerous companies have applied to the fund. Eight were selected to receive investments this month. Half of the companies selected in this first round are not currently included in OurCrowd’s portfolio. Recipients include:
BlueTree, which has developed proprietary technology to reduce sugar in natural beverages. The company was recently evacuated from its facility in Kiryat Shmona near the Lebanon border;
Carrar, experts in EV battery thermal management systems. The company was forced to relocate from its headquarters in Sderot near Gaza;
Edgybees, utilizing satellite and motion imagery to deliver actionable insights currently in use to save lives;
Verobotics, utilizing an autonomous robot for building exterior upkeep and proactive maintenance, whose key staff are serving in the reserves.
Shay Har-Noy, CEO of EdgyBees, said “We’re thrilled to get this investment, especially as our technology has been so crucial for the Israeli Defence Forces’ operation. With many of our employees serving in the military reserves, this additional funding is a vote of confidence in our technology, team and efforts to support the war effort.”
The Israel Resilience Fund will strive to catalyze co-investments from other OurCrowd funds, VCs and investors in OurCrowd’s global network, as well as potentially from government matching programs aimed at supporting the economy during the crisis. “Resilience Fund investments are catalyzing a ‘snowball effect” whereby the money being deployed is attracting and enabling up to 5X or 10X in additional funding, which will have a real impact on the targeted companies,” says Cali Chill, head of funds at OurCrowd.
The fund’s operations are managed by Jeff Kupietzky, a seasoned operator with over 15 years’ experience as a hightech CEO in the US and Israel. Kupietzky recently sold his company Jeeng to OpenWeb for $100 million. Kupietzky is accompanied by expert investment partners including Noam Kaiser, a former Partner at Intel Capital, and investor at Gemini Israel Ventures and Offer Hi Tech; and Liat Sverdlov, a Partner with the OurCrowd Investments Team.
Jeff Kupietzky, Operating Partner at the OurCrowd Resilience Fund said, “After pushing off financing rounds due to global venture market conditions, many companies developing unique technologies with strong product-market fit and positive business momentum, now find they have diminishing runways and need additional financing, but they face a challenging fundraising environment. Startups do not know when international investors will resume investing in Israeli startups as they wait for the conflict to subside. Additionally, companies face operational challenges with key personnel called up to the military reserves, while evacuations and rocket fire pose a challenge to daily business operations. Companies resiliently continue, yet many need financing to extend runways through the crisis and power their ultimate success.”
Izhar Shay, former Minister Science and Technology and Venture Partner with Disruptive AI, and a member of the fund’s Advisory Board, whose son Yaron Shay (z”l) fell in battle on the first day of the war defending Kibbutz Kerem Shalom said, “My mission is to honor those who lost their lives on October 7 and create more than a thousand new companies commemorating the victims of the war. The Israel Resilience Fund is exactly the response we need to create opportunity and growth and defeat those who only wish to destroy.”
Jon Medved, OurCrowd Founder and CEO, said, “Many venture-backed companies in Israel are already struggling due to the global venture slowdown and now face even more serious obstacles due to the war in Gaza, requiring immediate, focused investment. The Israel Resilience Fund will seek to create outsized returns for investors by taking advantage of discounted valuations in the current market, while supporting numerous Israeli companies to survive the crisis and flourish in the long run. As Israel’s most active VC, with hundreds of direct portfolio companies, OurCrowd is uniquely positioned to deploy capital immediately into a large pool of companies.”
About OurCrowd: OurCrowd is a global investing platform that empowers institutions and individual accredited investors to invest and engage in emerging technology companies at an early stage. Acclaimed by PitchBook as the most active venture investor in Israel every year since 2013, OurCrowd vets and selects companies across all sectors and stages, invests its own capital, and provides its global platform of over 225,000 registered members from 195 countries with unparalleled access and freedom to co-invest from as little as $10,000 in the companies of their choice.
Founded by CEO Jon Medved in 2013 with the vision of democratizing world-class venture capital investing, OurCrowd has grown rapidly into the world’s leading online investing platform and as of 2023 has over $2.2 billion in commitments, and deployed capital into more than 420 portfolio companies and 50 funds across five continents. To date, OurCrowd’s startups have recorded 63 exits including several public market listings: Beyond Meat (BYND), Lemonade (LMND), Innoviz (INVZ), Arbe (ARBE), Alpha Tau (DRTS), Freightos (CRGO); and numerous high-profile acquisitions: JUMP by Uber, BriefCam by Canon, Argus by Continental, Crosswise by Oracle, Replay by Intel, Corephotonics by Samsung, CyberX by Microsoft, and Kenna Security by Cisco.
OurCrowd builds value for its portfolio companies throughout their lifecycles, providing mentorship, recruiting industry advisors, navigating follow-on rounds and creating growth opportunities through its network of multinational partnerships. For more information: www.ourcrowd.com.