Israeli Startups Bring in $234 Million in First 2 Weeks of 2016

Pace of money coming in could yield biggest quarter in a long time for local tech companies.

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Zerto CEO and co-founder Ziv Kedem.
Zerto CEO and co-founder Ziv Kedem.Credit: Courtesy of Zerto

Barely two weeks into 2016, and Israeli startups have already raised a combined $234 million.

The latest and one of the biggest rounds was announced yesterday when Zerto, an Israeli-U.S. maker of software used in cloud computing, said it raised $50 million from the U.S. venture investor Institutional Venture Partners and Claltech, the Israeli investing arm of Len Blavatnik’s holding company Access Industries.

Zerto thus became the ninth Israeli startup to announce a major fundraising since the start of the year.

Only a day earlier Elastifile, a maker of computer-storage software, said it raised $35 million in a second private funding round led by existing investors Battery Ventures and Lightspeed Venture Partners, joined by six unnamed data center and server industry leaders companies as strategic investors.

On Monday, V-Wave, a medical device company that is developing an implantable interatrial shunt for the treatment of heart failure, completed a $28 million round with capital coming from Johnson & Johnson Innovation and venture capital funds TriVentures, Pura Vida Investments and BioStar Ventures.

Rounding out the list for 2016 so far: SiSense raised $50 million for its business intelligence software. InsighTec, a maker of ultrasound technology for noninvasive surgery, raised $22 million. Semiconductor company MultiPhy brought in $17 million as well as a strategic alliance with the Semtech Corporation. CartiHeal, which develops technology for regenerating bone and cartilage, secured $15 million. The medical device startup Pi-Cardia raised $10 million and online retailing technology startup TopSpin secured $7 million.

Four of the startups, raising a combined $75 million, are in biotechnology.

With 10 weeks left to go, the first quarter of 2016 could be Israel’s best in a long time for fundraising: If the pace to date continues, the total could reach exceed $1.4 billion. In first-quarter 2015, startups raised $987 million and the second and third quarters, the last for which figures are available, brought in around $1.1 billion each, according to IVC Research.

Zerto, whose software is used to protect, recover and move data in cloud data centers, said Wednesday the $50 million it raised would be used to continue developing its product line and enter new geographical markets. The company employs 300 people, half of them in Israel, and plans to hire 200 more workers over the next year, about half of them in Israel as well.

The company was founded in 2009 by brothers Ziv and Oded Kedem, the CEO and chief operating officer, respectively. They sold their Kashya data protection startup to EMC in 2006. The latest financing round brings Zerto’s total fundraising to $110 million. Zerto says it has about 2,200 customers.

Elastifile CEO and co-founder Amir Aharoni said the $35 million it secured would be used to develop the company’s product and to hire sales and marketing people as it gears up to launch its first commercial product in the next few months.

Based in Herzliya, Elastifile was founded in 2013 by Aharoni, Chief Technology Officer Shahar Frank and vice present of research and development Roni Luxenburg. The company has 50 employees, most of them in Israel, and has raised $44 million to date.