Seven Israelis That Could Be on Their Way to Wall Street Soon

These tech startups have either declared their IPO plans or hinted at them recently

FILE Photo: A GetTaxi driver.
Al Amir

Here are seven Israeli high-tech companies that have hinted or explicitly said they that they are weighing an initial public offering:

Gett

The taxi-hailing startup, once known as GetTaxi, has raised an enormous $700 million and is now valued at $1.4 billion. Dave (Shahar) Waiser, its CEO, regularly talks about Gett’s financial goals, even if hasn’t always met them.

At the start of this month, Waiser told employees in an email that the company’s taxi-hailing service is “on its way to making an operating profit by October” and added that “profitability, together with a focus on the business market (B2B), enhances our uniqueness in the eyes of investors and opens up the option of a public offering, possibly even in 2019.”

Two weeks later, Waiser told The Financial Times that Gett was mulling an IPO either on the London Stock Exchange or in Israel. “We will see how Lyft goes. We believe there’s a lot of public capital waiting for the [technology] darlings [Uber and Lyft], but we also believe that our business model makes sense,” he told the newspaper.

That said, in 2014, when Gett's revenues exceeded $100 million, Waiser said the company would be profitable that year but it was not.

Tufin

Tufin Software Technologies could be the next Israeli company to go public, either on the Nasdaq or in Japan. The company, which develops tools for managing network security, announced March 6 that it had filed a draft prospectus with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol TUFN. The number of shares to be offered and the price range have not yet been determined.

Capital market sources say that Tufin, which has raised $27 million to date, will seek to raise $100 million in the IPO at a $500 million company valuation. Tufin CEO Ruvi Kitov promised as early as 2014 that the company would go public, but this time it looks like it will happen.

JFrog

At the start of 2018, the company’s founders told TheMarker that if they reached $100 million in sales for the year, they would begin weighing IPO plans. Now, said Shlomi Ben Haim, JFrog’s CEO and cofounder, “we’ve exceeded that target.”

JFrog, a maker of automated toolsets for developers to enable them to manage and distribute software releases, and which has raised $220 million from investors to date, is valued at $1.2 billion, a figure Ben Haim said signals its readiness to go public.

“We started building relations with public investors,” he said. “But right now, we’re only testing the waters.” To help move the process forward, JFrog recruited Jacob Schulman, former chief financial officer of Mellanox, a publicly traded company that this month was sold to Nvidia for $6.9 billion.

Ben Haim won’t suggest a date for JFrog’s IPO but said “2020 will be the year of IPOs for DevOps companies.”

Fiverr

Last month Bloomberg News reported that this Israeli startup had retained the services of Citigroup and JPMorgan Chase ahead of an IPO that would value the company at $800 million. Citing unidentified sources, Bloomberg said Fiverr may sell the shares in the second half of the year, but that no final decision had been made on either the timing or valuation.

Fiverr, which provides an online marketplace for freelance services such as such as graphic design and film editing, has 400 employees, 300 of them in Israel, and has raised $110 million to date.

This is not the first time that Fiverr has been reported to be moving toward an IPO. TheMarker said in August that an IPO was imminent at a company valuation of $1 billion.

Zerto

Media reports this month say that the company, which provides disaster recovery software for virtualized and cloud infrastructures, is moving toward a Nasdaq IPO at a valuation of between $500 million and $600 million. The company, which has raised $175 million from investors to date, will sell $150 million in shares, according to the report.

The reports said that Zerto may complete one more round of private fundraising before the IPO and has already begun meeting U.S. investment banks about managing the offering. Asked about its plans, a Zerto spokesman told TheMarker: "Zerto never speaks publicly about its future financing plans.”

Riskified

Formed five years ago, the company is widely regarded as one of the fastest growing in the Israeli high-tech industry. Riskified offers technology for fraud prevention solution and chargeback protection services for online retailers. It’s raised $64 million to date and employs more than 300 people.

The company has never announced any IPO plans, but there was a hint of them last month when Eddy Shalev, one of the founders of the Genesis Partners venture capital fund, announced it was selling the portfolio of its Genesis IV fund to New York-based Insight Venture Partners.

The portfolio sale didn’t include Riskified, a signal that the Genesis managers expect the company to make an IPO in the next two years.

Kaltura

Back in 2015, there were rumors that Kaltura was planning an IPO, but four years later, the Ramat Gan-based startup is moving in that direction. The company has raised $165 million to date for its platform for uploading, managing and distributing video content and monetizing it.

In 2017, Shay David, its cofounder and CEO, told TheMarker that Kaltura had turned down a $500 million offer to buy the company. David said Kaltura would go public “when the financial data support an IPO at a valuation of close to $1 billion.” He predicted that this would happen in 2020.