Tech Roundup / Forget Doctors and Lawyers, Best Profession in Israel Is Mobile App Developer

Mobile app developers make mama proud; Amazon apps land in Israel; Telefonica's Israeli shopping spree; Reduxio is off to a good start.

Who said prophesy is a dead art? Not for the first time, a stock jumped like a maddened gazelle - after which the company released a material announcement. The latest leaper is Tel Aviv-listed Shefa Yamim, which shot up 30% in Wednesday trading for no obvious reason. Come Thursday morning it was up another 20% and the clouds over Tel Aviv cleared up: Shefa Yamim announced that an external appraiser had decided its effort to find diamonds in the riverbed of the Kishon river is worth $126.1 million. That's about NIS 350 million, and it's a far cry from the company's Wednesday-morning market cap of NIS 166 million. Now you know.

Mom wants you to be MAD: Forget doctors and lawyers, the best profession in Israel these days is developer of applications for mobile devices, it seems. During the first quarter of 2013, demand for mobile apps developers – let's call them MADs – rose 17% year over year, mainly for developers familiar with Java, iOS and HTML5, according to the Jobinfo portal. Why are they in demand? Because developing apps for mobile devices is all the rage. MADs also earn nicely, averaging NIS 10,000 a month in the beginning to NIS 27,000 a month with 7 years' experience.

Amazon apps finally reaching Israel: Amazon is expanding its Android-based apps store to cover more countries, including lil' ol' Israel. Until now the appstore was available only in the United States and England, Germany, France, Italy, Japan and Spain. The company also begs to note that it's also soliciting ideas from developers for its new markets. The Amazon apps compete with those of Apple (for iPhone and iPad), and GooglePlay's store for android-driven devices.

Telefonica trolling Israel for innovation: Telefonica, the 5th biggest mobile network provider in the world, sent Tracy Isacke, head of digital and innovation, to troll Israel for promising technologies  last week. She met with reps of more than 60 Israeli companies, as well as people from investment funds, at the end of which Telefonica means to pursue negotiations with 10 companies. Meanwhile the Spain-based firm is in the process of acquiring three Israeli startups.

Incubator invests in Pumpic: TheTime, an investments incubator funded in part by advertising executive Ilan Shiloach, has put up $700,000 seed money into a startup developing an images bank management system. Pumpic offers a web or iPhone-app based service that can scan the images bank in a computer within seconds, upload it to the Microsoft or Amazon cloud, and send up to 10,000 images. The software is in its beta testing phase, involving 400 users.

Storage startup Reduxio raises $9 million: Reduxio has raised $9 million in a first funding round backed by Jerusalem Venture Partners and Carmel Ventures. Founded in 2012, Reduxio is developing efficient hybrid storage systems combining HDD disks and flash memories. "Our system is like a hybrid car," CEO Weiner told TheMarker. "Pure flash memories are like electric cars: they're dropping in price but are still very expensive, and fuel-driven cars are going to stay around for a long time. The storage companies developed disk systems for years and are now working on flash, but both systems have bottlenecks preventing full integration." Enter Reduxio.

With writing by Eran Azran, Maya Epstein, Orr Hirschauge, Inbal Orpaz

Reuters