The enthusiasm of Chinese investors for Israeli technology companies is reaching new highs as was seen at the GoforIsrael conference. The GoforIsrael Foshan event was home to 1200 guests, including more than 500 highly-qualified Chinese investors as well as the Ambassador of Israel to China, Zvi Heifetz and the consul general in Guangzhou, Nadav Cohen. This is the second time that the conference has been held in China, following the September 2016 event in Shanghai.
One hundred entrepreneurs from Israeli startups and high-tech companies arrived in Foshan, where they introduced their technologies to Chinese investors and held a record number of more than 800 one-on-one meetings with Chinese investors, some with the help of 70 translators. The initiators of the conference were Cukierman & Co. Investment House Investment House, Catalyst CEL Fund, the city of Foshan with its 7 million population, and Rits Leaguer Group, a financial group in China, which operates an international center for scientific and technological innovation in Foshan City, in conjunction with Tsing Hua University.
“This is the 19th time that the GoforIsrael investment conference has taken place, and it seems to be the best one yet,” said Haggai Ravid, CEO of Cukierman & Co. Investment House. “All the Israeli companies have received a great deal of interest. The city of Foshan, considered to be a central and growing economic center in China, was covered entirely by GoforIsrael flags, and the excitement and attention were extraordinary. Among the participants were many Chinese investors who arrived on long flights within China, including distances of 2000 kilometers, especially to meet the Israeli companies.”
The event presented the best of Israeli innovation in areas such as artificial intelligence, IT, life sciences, cyber, energy, advanced production, telecom, automotive technologies and more.
Among the Israeli companies exhibiting at the conference were: Trax, Orbotech, HearMeOut, Lamina, UBQ Materials, Valcare, Curalife, Check-Cap, PerfAction, NGT3VC, MindUP, and more.
Among the Chinese investors were senior executives from Chinese traded companies, many funds and financial institutions, including Alibaba, Ping An, the largest insurance and finance company in China, Sailing Capital, GF Securities, Fosun, Haitong, and others.
Nadav Cohen, the Israeli consul-general in Guangzhou, who spoke at the conference, advised investors and managers from both countries to be patient before signing agreements and invest enough time in locating the right people for early-stage cooperation. He noted the key role of Foshan in the “One Belt One Road” initiative and its central role in the development of the Greater Bay Area, which combines nine cities in Guangdong Province with Hong Kong and Macau, is to create the largest technology center in the world. Foshan Mayor Zhu Wei said the city has become focused on investment and entrepreneurial moves, creating an enormous interest from all over the world.
Among the participants at the event: Zvi Heifetz, Israeli Ambassador to China; Zhu Wei, Mayor of Foshan; Nadav Cohen, Consul-General of Israel in Guangzhou; Edouard Cukierman, Chairman of the Cukierman & Co. Investment House and Managing Partner of the Israeli-Chinese Catalyst CEL Fund; Yair Shamir, Former Minister of Agriculture in Israel and Managing Partner of Catalyst CEL fund; Haggai Ravid, CEO of Cukierman & Co. Investment House; D. Todd Dollinger, Chairman and CEO of Trendlines Group; Ilan Ofer, Business Development Manager, Orbotech; Dr. Zhang Jian, Managing Partner of Ping An Ventures; Yoav Sade, Partner & Head of China Practice, Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal; Shengyan Fan, Managing Partner of Catalyst CEL Fund; Yongqing Zhang, Senior Director and Head of M&A at GF Securities; Xiangjun Li, Vice Chairman, China M&A Association; and other executives in the Chinese investment and entrepreneurship world.