Arab Israeli high-tech incubator raises $4.5 million
Sep. 22, 2014
Takwin Labs, an incubator for Israeli Arab hi-tech entrepreneurs focused on Internet and mobile technologies, announced Sunday that it has secured $4.5 million in funding.
The Haifa-based Takwin, which means “beginning” in Arabic, was spun off from several industry leaders already active in the Arab Israeli hi-tech market: Imad Telhami, whose company Babcom is one of the largest employers of Arab engineers in Israel, Labor MK Erel Margalit, who founded Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP), and Chemi Peres, chairman of Al Bawader, a VC (venture capital) firm that invests in Arab start-ups (and son of former president Shimon Peres). It plans to invest in four to six startups in the coming year, but also hopes to grow its fund to $20 million.
The incubator is one of a series of initiatives in recent years designed to boost Arabs in the hi-tech field, in part by helping the sector grow its own companies. Only two percent of Israel’s Arabs who study technology find jobs with Jewish employers, and many become teachers instead.
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