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December 24, 2019 12:05 pm

Israeli Town Yeruham Gets Medical Cannabis Incubator

avatar by Tzally Greenberg and Adi Pick / CTech

An employee sorts freshly harvested cannabis buds at a medical marijuana plantation in northern Israel on March 21, 2017. Photo: REUTERS/Nir Elias/File Photo.

CTech – The small Israeli town Yeruham is getting a medical cannabis incubator. Jerusalem-based equity crowdfunding company OurCrowd, pharmaceutical manufacturer Perrigo Company, and Israel-based medical cannabis company Breath of Life International (BOL Pharma) won a tender issued by the Israel Innovation Authority (IIA), the Israeli government’s tech investment arm, to operate an incubator in Yeruham for a period of five years, IIA announced Monday.

According to the terms of the tender, the IIA and the three companies will jointly invest up to NIS 150 million (approximately $43 million) in the incubator over the next five years, with a possible extension period of three years. The incubator will accept a cohort of six medical cannabis startups each year, meaning 30 startups in total over the five-year period.

The incubator will help introduce entrepreneurs to strategic partners and investors from Israel and abroad and provide access to laboratories and production facilities, the IIA said in a statement.

On Monday, the IIA also announced the establishment of two additional incubators. One will be built in northern Israeli town Karmiel, and the second at the Idan haNegev Industrial Park, located near southern Bedouin city Rahat.

Yeruham is in a difficult situation after Emilia Cosmetics, which employed some 250 people locally, announced the closure of its Yeruham factory in May. In June, Calcalist reported that the town, with a population of less than 10,000, aims to become the medical cannabis capital of Israel and is banking on government support to do it.

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