2015 was a record year for Israeli acquisitions. PriceWaterhouseCoopers’s annual Hi-Tech Exit Report released this week reveals Israeli companies are no longer rushing to take their companies public. According to the Report, for small-to-medium sized
(By Kevin Clarke, of United World Telecom) Expanding your business operations into foreign markets presents very difficult and often unexpected challenges. Even the most successful startups run into serious roadblocks at the internationalization of their business. Globalization has promising opportunities with untapped markets of consumers, but if not done properly it can mean the end of your business.
A physical expansion into a new territory can be an extremely straining feat for a company. Most of the time, it requires taking out a business loan and putting the company in serious debt. Many businesses take this risk and very few come out alive. Why take all that risk when there is a less expensive, more practical route?
Luckily, in today’s interconnected world economy, businesses need not make that physical move to new markets. Instead of taking that dangerous risk, businesses can make a bold presence in a new market through the use of telecommunications and online marketing.
Businesses That Use International Virtual Phone Numbers
Modern telecommunications allow any business to reach customers anywhere across the globe. Relative to a full expansion into a new market, opening a virtual office is essentially free. Furthermore, businesses can connect to employees from around the world through call forwarding. More and more often businesses use international virtual phone numbers to present a local, domestic profile in a foreign market when really they have no actual boots on the ground there. These tactics are used by companies ranging from producers & wholesalers, to service based businesses, and more.
The idea is simple, smart, and inexpensive. You will need to purchase a local or toll free phone number (about $7.95) in your destination country to receive calls from customers in that area. The calls are then forwarded to your business’ phone lines in your home country. Once the connection is made, your customer service, sales, technical help, etc. personnel are now doing business with people in a new market. A market that you have no tangible investment in!
Some examples of businesses that utilize this effective tactic:
Conversify, an international “virtual” company of home-based offices operates off of one main number and a number of different home phone numbers. Customers call the company’s main number and are greeted by a virtual receptionist who forwards them to the appropriate extension.
Automattic, a company with 123 employees, has an impressive take for a virtual office. The company has a headquarters, but employees are able to work from anywhere in the world (Bulgaria, Vietnam, Alabama, San Francisco, etc.) The official location is a hub for all business, but the company enjoys the geographical diversity of customers and employees worldwide. Employees and customers reach each other almost solely through telecommunications and the internet.
With a system as efficient and cost effective as United World Telecom, a business can easily take on multiple markets simultaneously without any major investments made or debts incurred.
Low Risk, High Reward
Operating internationally off of virtual telephone numbers gives you the virtual presence. In other words: Your company is doing business in a foreign country, but you have no real attachments there other than your phone number. In the event of a failed expansion in a foreign country, the business would not have to lay off any employees, there would be no real estate to sell off, there would be no worry about losing any tangible assets there. The business would simply discontinue their telephone service in that country and move onto the next venture.
Verkehrsschild Global und LokalConversely, if the virtual expansion proves to be a success and the business is making a profit in the foreign country, there are a few new opportunities that are presented. At this point the business may either continue to operate solely through its current telephone system or explore further expansion methods. Once the business is established in the market, it may be fit to purchase real estate there and open a “brick-and-mortar” office. If you decide to go this route, United World Telecom has even more tools and features that can further develop communications throughout your business.
United World Telecom is a service provider located in the United States, helping Israeli companies establish virtual offices around the world.
Advantages of a Virtual Office with United World Telecom
With United World Telecom’s suite of easy to use features, customers can remotely operate their virtual office anywhere in the world. Here are a few of those features (follow each link to learn more about each feature):
• Largest selection of toll-free and local numbers worldwide
• Call Forwarding anywhere in the world
• Interactive Voice Response (menu) with Custom Greetings
• Call Recording and Voicemail
• Simultaneous Ringing
• Local Ringback
• Rollover Minutes
• Select Country Forwarding
• Application Programming Interface
With these features and plenty more, your business need not worry about communications. United World Telecom’s got your back!
On December 3rd, Microsoft Technology Center in Times Square hosted a very special night, featuring companies from Jerusalem's Kamatech accelerator.
Kamatech is an Israeli accelerator based on the adoption of Haredi innovations by prominent successful secular startups. The program connects Haredi entrepreneurs to the startup ecosystem, offering them apprenticeships in leading companies and providing supervision by industry veterans. It provides access to knowledge and tools, and promotes the development of hi-tech enterprises from the Haredi sector. Major partners include LiveU, Outbrain, Wix, Plarium, Taboola and Sqream.
Israel's Ministry of Economy is interested in bringing the economical and societal benefits of the hi-tech revolution to all parts of Israeli society. In an effort to ensure that Arab and Haredi communities are better represented in the Startup Nation phenomenon, a number of programs have popped up from the public and private sector. Jewish and Arab Israelis are initiating programs like Takwin Labs to bring hope and opportunity to Arabic entrepreneurs. At the same time, programs and accelerators have emerged to leverage hi-tech opportunities in the Haredi communities, such as Ravtech and Kamatech. Kamatech's leadership includes Moshe Friedman, an Haredi entrepreneur, and Zika Abzuk, a veteran of the Israeli hi-tech scene.
The accelerator also enjoys the support of Dr. Yossi Vardi, one of the Godfathers of Startup Nation. The exhibiting companies:
- Bontact Connecting customers to businesses via existing communication platforms.
- Brillianetor AI system that furnishes computers with socialization skills, to help it interact with a human environment and take care of itself.
- Cognilyze Psychology based solution that analyzes why shoppers are buying a product, and makes recommendations.
- Pojo.me Create professional websites with drag and drop platform.
- Prog-Up Innovative online marketplace for designers.
- WorkCapital Total e-commerce solution for payments, logistics and POS.
- English-On Learn a language while you surf the web and read the news.
- DBA2 Security and peace of mind for database administrators at finance companies.
For more information about Kamatech and these companies, contact Moshe Friedman.
For info about technology innovation in the Haredi and Arab communities in Israel, contact Josh at the Israel Economic Mission in NYC.
Medica Trade Fair, the world’s largest medical marketplace with 130,000 visitors from 120 nations, held its annual Medica Apps Contest in Dusseldforf. Israeli startups dominated the contest, comprising half of all Finalists, the Winner and
December 4 – The U.S.-Israel Business Initiative hosted its Annual Meeting celebrating the 30th anniversary of the U.S.-Israel Free Trade Agreement and launched the U.S Chamber of Commerce and Manufacturers Association of Israel study: “Re-energizing
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Israel’s Ministry of National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Resources (MIEW) today announced $5.1 million for six newly selected clean energy projects as part