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September 12, 2019 10:20 am

Israel’s Tech Brand Succeeds Where its Political Brand Fails, Says Oxx Founder

avatar by Omer Kabir / CTech

Participants at the DLD Tel Aviv Digital Conference, Israel’s largest international high-tech gathering, held at the Old Train Station complex in Tel Aviv on Sept. 6, 2017. Photo: Miriam Alster/Flash90.

CTech – When Israeli companies become more relaxed and American in their attitude, it is a sign of maturity, according to Richard Anton, founder and general partner at London and Stockholm-based growth capital firm Oxx. Anton spoke in a chat with Jonathan Medved, founder and CEO of Jerusalem-based equity crowdfunding company OurCrowd, at Calcalist’s third annual Mind the Tech conference in London Thursday.

British people are often uncomfortable with Israeli startups due to differences in attitude, but both countries have plenty in common, Anton said, listing their deep relationship with the US, their centralized market, and their strong entrepreneurial culture. A big difference is that Israeli entrepreneurs get a head start in the army in terms of experience, that Israeli universities are more focused on entrepreneurship, and that Israel has a dense investment ecosystem, he said.

The UK has an advanced consumer market and a large financial system, and it is also the only country except the US to have scientific universities ranked in the top 10, but it is disadvantaged when it comes to investments, Anton said.

The Israeli brand might have bad political connotations in a lot of countries, but when it comes to technology it is considered very prestigious, Anton said. Regarding the challenges Israeli startups face during their growth stage, he said that there are only two markets that really support growth companies — the US and China. To create a big global company, access to the US is required, he added.

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