TechNation/ Israel's Mobileye Ranked Sixth Smartest Firm in the World

Sony Pictures to invest several millions in Interlude | Israel, U.S. sign joint declaration to share data on cyber threats | Fintech exits in Israel expected to rise | Cloud computing company Zerto raises $20m

Israeli technology company Mobileye was ranked among the world’s six smartest companies by MIT Magazine. Another Israeli company, IDE Technologies owned by Delek and ICL, also made the list of the year’s top 50 companies that combine innovative technology with an efficient business model.

Mobileye, whose product helps people drive safely, for instance providing warnings when they’re drifting out of their lane, beat out Google, Facebook and Toyota to rank sixth. The ranking explained that Mobileye’s technology enables car manufacturers to compete against technology powerhouses such as Google in its bid to develop a driverless car. IDE, ranked 19, works to desalinate water and does so in an economically feasible manner. (Ronit Domke)

Sony Pictures to invest several millions in Interlude

Yoni Bloch, left and Barak Feldman,founders of the Interlude interactive-video startup company in Israel.
David Bachar

Sony Pictures Entertainment will invest several million dollars in Israeli startup Interlude, The Los Angeles Times has reported. The company, founded by Yoni Bloch and Barak Feldman, develops interactive videos that allow the viewer to choose his own narrative and participate in creating the story.

In MTV’s “Scream” series, for example, viewers can choose from different icons that can influence the action on the screen.

Sony’s investment in Interlude follows others by media giants like MGM and Warner Music, which have already plunked down millions of dollars. Interlude has attracted no less than $40 million so far. As part of Sony’s investment, it will produce 4 to 5 digital series to be offered for free on the company’s Facebook page. (Itay Stern)

Israel, U.S. sign joint declaration to share data on cyber threats

Israel and the United States have agreed to improve their information sharing in the field of cyber protection. Under the newly signed joint declaration, Israel has become one of the first countries to join a U.S. Department of Homeland Security platform for sharing crucial data about cyber threats.

The declaration states the two countries intend to combine forces in order more effectively combat cyber threats. The document calls for joint investments in protecting critical infrastructure, building partnerships with the private sector, as well as research and development.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security and its Israeli equivalent, the National Authority for Cyber Protection, intend to improve real-time data sharing with operative value. Israel will be taking part in the DHS’s Automated Indicater Sharing initiative as part of the plan. (Ora Coren)

FinTech exits in Israel expected to rise

Israeli fintech exits are expected to jump over the next few years, according to a new report by Bank Leumi. The report on Israeli and global financial technology trends, published this week, states that Israel’s fintech industry is a global leader in capital and investment management and electronic trade.

Around half of Israeli fintech companies employ less than 10 people. The next 12 to 18 months will determine whether this industry continues to grow in competition with the banking sector, or whether financial institutions will have no choice but to start cooperating with start-ups in this field, the report stated. (Elihay Videl)

Still raising money: Cloud computing company Zerto raises $20m

Cloud computing company Zerto has raised another $20 million, it announced. The company, founded in 2009, has raised $70 million so far this year and $130 million in total. The company has refused to share information on its market cap or revenues. The current fundraising round was led by U.S. venture capital fund Charles River Ventures. Zerto plans to use the funds to venture into new countries and to expand its product line. (Inbal Orpaz)