Tech Nation

Foreign funds top Israeli investment in local startups in 2013, with Sergey Grishin’s SGVC leading the way.

Foreign funds dominated Israeli startup investments in 2013

For the first time ever, in 2013 more first-time investments in Israeli startups came from foreign funds than Israeli ones, the IVC Research Center reported last week. Of 255 first investment deals, just 111 (44%) were made by Israeli funds, while 144 came from abroad. There was also a rise in the number of individual funds from abroad making a first investment in Israeli companies. Last year saw 81 foreign venture capital funds made such investments, an 11% increase over 2012, and that was also a 223% increase from 2009, IVC Research said. On the other hand, the number of Israeli venture capital funds making first investments in Israeli startups dropped to close to their 2009 levels last year, at 38 funds.

Grishin’s SG fund tops list for number of VC investments in Israel

SG VC, a California-based venture capital firm founded by Russian-born investor Sergey Grishin, made first-time investments in 11 individual startups in Israel last year, thereby topping the IVC Research Center’s ranking of the number of investments by micro-venture capital funds in Israel in 2013. Among the Israeli companies that attracted SG’s funds were Interlude, DudaMobile and Commerce Sciences. When it comes to venture capital funds with assets of more than $50 million, in top spot – as measured by the number of first-time investments in Israeli startups – was Pontifax, followed by Pitango, which is the largest venture capital firm in Israel. Among the companies in which Pontifax invested were TheraCoat, OCON and V-Wave. Pitango’s investments last year included Taboola, SalesPredict, Revizer and Ubimo.

Galmed shares begin Nasdaq trading

Shares of Galmed Pharmaceuticals, a Tel Aviv-based biopharmaceutical company founded in 2000, began trading last Thursday on the Nasdaq capital market. The company had announced that the 2,837,400 ordinary shares of its initial public offering would be priced at $13.50 per share, before underwriting discounts and commissions. In fact, they opened at $17.00 on the first day of trading and closed at $14.31. The stock’s Friday close was $14.65. The company, which is trading under the GLMD symbol, is engaged in clinical-stage therapies for liver diseases and gallstones.

Bloomberg