2020 was a crazy year to say the least, towards the end of the year we took time to reflect on what happened over the past 12 months. Although the year started off with promise and potential for many companies around the world, the unfortunate events that were about to unfold in regards to COVID-19 changed the world as we know it.
However, the challenge of COVID did not present a problem to Israeli technology but instead an opportunity, which is why by the end of the year the number of start-ups that offered service based solutions to the Coronavirus increased to 400. This led to Israel being one of the only countries in the world with an increase of capital investment into their technologies for 2020. December 2020 figures confirmed that investment into Israeli companies during the year grew 23% since 2019 to a whopping $9.5 billion in capital. Compared to the rest of the world, the USA only 5% and Asia seeing a decline of 15%, Israel has stood out as one of the most successful innovators of 2020 that has seen the global economy on the brink of collapse.
Some of the biggest investments have come from COVID related technologies, however there have been other areas which Israeli Tech has been successful; demonstrating the versatility of Israel’s economy as a whole.
The largest swathe of investment last year went to Hippo Insurance Services, who raised $350 million from a Japanese subsidiary of MS&AD Insurance Group Holdings called Mitsui Sumitomo. Hippo, an Insurtech start-up founded in 2015 by Assaf Wand and Eyal Navon, allows customers to save 25% on premiums and get smarter coverage for household goods through the understanding data from public data sets. The investment will help the company’s product roll out across the US and allow them to reach 95% of American homes in 2021.
Another prominent investment opportunity that occurred earlier in the 2020 was SentinelOne, who were able to close $267 million in funding to help with the demands for their innovative technology. Their solution helps to deliver autonomous security for endpoint, data center, and cloud environments to help organizations secure their assets with speed and simplicity. The company is taking the cybersecurity industry by storm and is currently valued at $3.1 billion.
Gongo.io Ltd was another company from Israel that received substantial funding from a joint deal worth $200 million by Coatue, Salesforce and Sequoia. The company’s software uses artificial intelligence (AI) to analyze conversations, enabling sales teams to better understand the things that are going right and wrong in their sales calls. With some of their biggest customers being the likes of Paypal, Shopify and Slack – Gong has become a major player in the data analytics market and it’s led to their company being valued at $2.2 billion after only being founded in 2015, an impressive feat for such a new start-up.
These types of investment during a year like 2020 show the promise and potential that Israel can look forward to in 2021. As the globe starts to come out of the pandemic and countries begin to return to normality, the investment trends towards Israeli technology from the previous year will almost certainly come to fruition in the future.