Tech Nation - Haifa Wants Its Own Stock Exchange

Haifa longs for a stock market; Giraffic to enhance HD streaming for Samsung; Bizzabo seeks new funding.

M. Mayan

Haifa wants its own stock exchange
The Haifa municipality aims to set up a stock market that would compete with Tel Aviv’s and specialize in technology shares, business website Globes reported Thursday. City hall has already invited bids to establish an exchange, Globes said. Mayor Yona Yahav has been pushing the project for two years now, noting that Israel is an anomaly in having only one main commercial hub. Haifa is focusing on tech stocks because startups and high-tech giants like Apple, Google and Yahoo already have a presence in the northern port city, host to the Technion Israel Institute of Technology. The municipality’s plan comes at a difficult time for the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange as trading volumes slump and companies delist. (TheMarker)

Video-acceleration firm Giraffic inks deal with Samsung
Samsung has selected Israel’s Giraffic to enhance high-definition streaming on the Korean electronics giant’s 2014 line of smart televisions and BluRay players, the Israeli firm said. Although users of existing smart TVs can already access sites such as YouTube and stream videos on their televisions, Giraffic aims to assure smoother and uninterrupted streaming even with high-definition videos. Giraffic, which was founded in 2008 and has a staff of 20 at the Tel Aviv Port, has three target client bases: websites, so-called over-the-top Internet-based TV providers and electronics manufacturers such as Samsung. In Israel, the site Mako uses Giraffic’s video-acceleration technology. (Amitai Ziv)

Bizzabo launches new funding round
Bizzabo, a Tel Aviv-based business-networking and event-app firm, unveiled a $2.5 million funding round Thursday to involve existing and new investors. Participants include Kaedan Capital, AfterDox, Gigi Levy and new investors OurCrowd and Massa Group. Bizzabo has raised $4 million to date. The latest round precedes a planned rollout of an event-management platform later this year. Bizzabo integrates social media to build “event communities” and interact directly with event participants. The company was co-founded by Eran Ben-Shushan, Alon Alroy and Boaz Katz. (TheMarker)