TechNation: Israel's Pitango Invests in Foursquare

Pitango invests in U.S. company Foursquare | PointGrab gets $7m from Philips, Mitsubishi | Medallia of U.S. buys customer-feedback startup Kampyle.

Yoram Reshef

Pitango invests in U.S. company Foursquare

Israel’s Pitango Venture Capital Growth Fund joined the latest investment round for Foursquare, the San Francisco-based company that combines social media and location technology to alert users to shopping opportunities.

TheMarker has learned that Pitango joined a fundraising round from last January that raised $45 million from a group of American investors and topped it off with capital that brings the total amount raised to $52 million. The Foursquare investment was the second for its Growth Fund, which launched almost a year ago, after an investment in the ride-sharing app Via.

Pitango’s $1.8 billion in investments numbers only one other overseas company, KiloPass, but it plans more foreign investments in areas like mobile and big data, partner Isaac Hillel said.

“This isn’t a statement about the local market,” he said. “We think Israeli high-tech is in its best condition in years. There are more and more growth companies that could be leaders in their markets and become major players.” (Eliran Rubin)

Proofpoint buys security startup FireLayers

The Israeli cloud-security startup FireLayers is being acquired by the U.S. company Proofpoint for $55 million in cash and shares, but will continue to operate in Israel as a research and development center.

“For us it’s not an exit because we’re not going anywhere,” CEO and co-founder Yair Grindlinger told TheMarker. The acquisition comes less than three years after Grindlinger and Doron Elgressy founded the company, which employs 27 people, mainly in Herzilya.

FireLayers raised $7 million in investments over that time from YL Ventures and the companies Akami Technologies and Blue Coat. Grindlinger said the firm had received six buyout offers, four in the last few months, and chose Proofpoint because it preferred a cyber-security company over a general computer company. Proofpoint agreed to pay $46 million in cash another $9 million in its Nasdaq-traded shares. (Eliran Rubin)

PointGrab gets $7m from Philips, Mitsubishi

PointGrab, an Israeli internet of things startup, announced Tuesday it had secured a $7-million strategic investment from an investor group led by Philips Lighting, the Dutch maker of lighting products, and Mitsubishi UFJ Capital, the venture capital arm of Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group.

They were joined by existing investor ABB Technology Ventures. PointGrab’s CogniPoint technology, to be launched on the market in early 2017, detects the presence of people in buildings and shuts off lighting if there’s no one in a room who needs it.

“Incorporating this functionality in our connected lighting systems will enable us to address a larger market and further capitalize on our position as the lighting company for the internet of things,” said Jacques Letzelter, Global segment leader, office and industry at Philips Lighting. Based in Hod Hasharon, PointGrab was founded by chairman Saar Wilf, CEO Haim Perski and Amir Kaplan, vice president of technology. The company raised $5 million last December. (TheMarker Staff)

Medallia of U.S. buys customer-feedback startup Kampyle

Medallia, a U.S. maker of customer-experience management software, said last week it has acquired the Israeli startup Kampyle, whose platform captures customer feedback from digital and mobile devices.

Medallia didn’t say how much it paid for the Israel company, which had raised $4 million in capital since it was formed in 2008 from Carmel Ventures, as well as the private investors Yossi Vardi and Shlomo Nehama.

Medallia said it would offer a new product called Medallia Digital that combines Medallia’s data analytics platform with Kampyle’s web and mobile feedback capture capabilities.

“Companies need to be everywhere their customers are, and, increasingly, customers are on digital,” said Medallia CEO Borge Hald. “With Kampyle, we are significantly expanding our already rapidly growing footprint in digital.” CEO Ori Soen will join the U.S. company’s management team. It is expected over the next year to expand its 30-strong Israeli workforce significantly. (Eliran Rubin)