Sunday, February 7, 2016

Israeli company Regentis Biomaterials Raises $15M, round led by Chinese group Haisco

Israeli biomedical company Regentis Biomaterials announced today the closing their $15 million Series D funding round, led by Chinese pharmaceutical group Xizang Haisco Pharmaceutical Group Co. Ltd, a leading Chinese pharmaceutical group listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SHE:002653).

Also participated in the round existing investors: Medica Venture Partners, SCP Vitalife Partners, Italian asset manager Generali Investment, and the technology transfer company of the Technion, T3.

Regentis CEO and President is Dr. Alastair Clemow.

Regentis Biomaterials is developing hydrogels for tissue regeneration originally developed at the Technion University by Dr. Dror Seliktar. The company’s flagship product, GelrinC™, combines the stability and versatility of a synthetic material with the bio-functionality of a natural substance. Currently the treatment is under clinical trials for the treatment of articular cartilage lesions.

Haisco Pharmaceutical Group, founded in 2000, is a publicly listed company focusing on marketing and sales of internally-developed therapeutic drugs. Haisco ranks third in size in China’s chemical pharmaceutical industry. The company’s products are sold to more than 3,000 hospitals throughout China with annual sales of over US$800 million.

Last year Haisco Group invested in two other Israeli medical device companies: $10 million were invested in October 2015 in Endospan and in July 2015 they invested $5 million in MST – Medical Surgery Technologies.



Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Chinese fund GOEC to participate in Israeli cyber startup Kaymera $10mm investment round

Israeli cyber security startup Kaymera has raised $10 million in a round led by a Hong Kong / China venture fund GOEC with additional participation from Israeli angel investors Eddy Shalev and Yariv Gilat.

Using the newly raised capital, the company is expected to hire 10 new employees at their office in Herzliya as well as opening offices abroad.

Founded in 2013 and led by Co-Founder and CEO Avi Rosen, Kaymera has developed a mobile cyber defense system to provide enterprises with a multi-stacked approach that includes hardware enforced endpoint protection, encrypted data and behaviour analytics to monitor and mitigate mobile threats.

Kaymera’s flagship product is a secure operating system called Kaymera 360°, which is available for the Samsung Galaxy, LG, Nexus, HTC and OnePlus One. It touts a three-tiered defense that blocks malware penetration, overlays a sophisticated resource permission process based on each app’s risk assessment, and a third layer that analyzes app misbehavior and deploys countermeasures.

The company was co-founded by CEO Avi Rosen, Shalev Hulio, and Omri Lavie in 2014. Hulio and Lavie’s previous venture, NSO, also received angel support from Eddy Shalev.


Monday, February 1, 2016

2015: Funding for Israeli high-tech hits all-time high

Israeli tech companies raised $4.43 billion in 2015, 30% more than in 2014. The number of deals was also a record. 2015 was a record year for fund raising by Israel's high tech industry.

Israeli tech companies raised $4.43 billion last year in 708 deals, according to figures released by IVC Research Center and KPMG. The amount and the number of deals are both all-time highs. The amount raised is 30% above the previous high, recorded in 2014, when 690 deals totaled $3.42 billion. The average deal peaked as well, at $6.3 million in 2015, compared with the previous year's $5 million average round and a $4 million average in the past ten years.

The fourth quarter of 2015 was especially successful, in fact the best ever. Israeli start-ups raised an aggregate $1.2 billion in the quarter, 11% more than in the third quarter, and 10% more than in the fourth quarter of 2014.

VC-backed deals accounted for 72% of capital raised in 2015, with an outstanding $3.2 billion closed in 397 deals, or only 56% of deals. The past three years have seen consistent 30% annual growth in capital raising in VC-backed deals.

The compilers of the report comment, "It seems the increase in VC-backed capital raising is therefore mostly explained by the increase in the size of the average financing round where VC funds participated. The average VC-backed deal in 2015 reached nearly $8 million, an unprecedented record, well above the $5.9 million average in 2014, and much higher than the $4.4 million average VC-backed deal in 2013." Ofer Sela, partner at KPMG Somekh Chaikin's Technology Group, warns that the slowdown in investment in the rest of the world will catch up with Israel.

"In the last quarter of 2015, the trend Israel ran contrary to that of the rest of the world. While global markets were affected by the slowdown in the Chinese stock market, an unstable global economy and the interest rate hike in the US, Israel remained untouched by this global wariness. We expect the Israeli market to slow down if the bear market persists. The general current sentiment in the Israeli market is that 'winter is coming'," Sela said.

IVC Research Center CEO Koby Simana said, "As of the second quarter of 2014 and throughout the past year, we have repeatedly pointed to the uptrend in the number of large deals and their sizes. We’ve seen growth stage companies raising substantial capital to boost their growth rates and grab larger market shares. The trend was largely fueled by the influx of capital from foreign investors, and a shift in market trends may indeed cause a slowdown on that front.

"However, there’s still room for Israeli high-tech companies to find both organic and non-organic growth, and materialize their full potential. We’ve seen in the past year a 25 percent hike in the number of Israeli growth stage companies, and the numbers keep growing. At the same time, there’s an increase in the capital dedicated to growth investments by late stage and growth focused VC funds, which are expected to continue investing even if the market slows, or even capitalize on the slight decline in valuations that a possible slowdown may cause."

Israeli venture capital funds accelerated their activity in 2015, investing $653 million, which compares with $568 million in 2014. Their share in the total amount of capital raised, however, continues to fall, reaching a low of 15% in 2015, compared with 17% in 2014 and a 30% average share in the past ten years.

Israeli VC funds placed a total of $236 million in first investments, which accounted for 36% of their total placements, up from 30% in 2014 and 2013. In the breakdown by sector, in 2015, 181 software companies led all capital raising with $1.3 billion or 29% percent of the total capital. They were followed closely by Internet companies, with 172 deals raising just under $1.3 billion. The life science sector followed, with 22% of the total capital raised in 2015.





Published by Globes, Israel business news on January 25, 2016

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Singapore’s Temasek backs Israel $150m VC fund

Temasek Holdings, a Singapore government investment company, is in the final stretch of raising a $150 million fund to invest in mature Israeli high-tech company.

The new fund, called Red Dot, which is nicknamed for the tony city state, plans to invest between $10 million and $15 million in each company in its portfolio.

Yoram Oren, who was behind the Vertex Ventures fund formed in 1997 with Singaporean capital, will be chairman of the new fund. It will act as a sister investor to Vertex, which will continue to invest in younger startups.


Sunday, January 24, 2016

Chinese fund CEIIF to Invest in Israel Cyber Company ImVision

Chinese venture capital fund, CreditEase Israel Innovation Fund (CEIIF) participated in a $4mm investment round in the Israeli cyber security company ImVision Technologies. Also participated in the round Israeli venture capital Pitango.

mVision is a cyber security startup company that operates in NFV/SDN environments. The company quickly became a market leader for anomaly detection and isolation. This was based on unique Correlative Behavioral Analysis algorithms that specializes in service awareness across the entire network.

The company was established in 2014 by Sharon Mantin, Yossi Barshishat and Dr. Eli Plotnik and has 14 employees. The company will use the funds to scale up development of their products. ImVision raised to-date $500,000 in seeds funds.


Thursday, January 21, 2016

Hong Kong VC Arbor Ventures to Invests in Israeli Startup TravelersBox

Israel's TravelersBox, which allows travellers to convert leftover foreign currency into digital currency, said on Thursday it raised $10 million led by Arbor Ventures.

Based in Hong Kong, Arbor Ventures focuses on the intersection of big data, financial services and digital commerce.

Also participated in the round existing investors such as Pitango Venture Capital, IPE Ventures, Pereg Ventures, iAngels and Global Blue.

The company has raised $15.5 million to date. TravelersBox operates kiosks in airports throughout the world and has facilitated several million transactions to date. Travellers can convert foreign change and bills that can be deposited into a PayPal account, turned into gift cards for retailers or used to make charitable donations.

The new funds will enable TravelersBox to grow, specifically in Asia as its next deployments are expected to be in Japan, India and New Zealand. The company plans to deploy an additional 300 kiosks this year.

It also aims to accelerate product development, including an application that will enable consumers to convert their change into digital currency in their home country when shopping at airport-based retail outlets throughout the world.


Sunday, January 10, 2016

Chinese VC to Invest in Pi-Cardia US$10m Round

Pi-Cardia Ltd., the Rehovot, Israel based company, annonced today that it has completed a $10 million financing including participation by a new strategic investor. Also participating in the round, are Italian funds Innogest and Fondo Atlante Ventures, Chinese fund VI-Ventures and existing investors in the company, including Clal Biotechnology Industries and Anatomy Medical Technologies Fund.

Pi-Cardia, founded in 2009, developed the Leaflex™ Catheter System - a novel non-implant based technology for treating patients with aortic valve stenosis. The Leaflex™ is a low-profile trans-femoral catheter incorporating unique Nitinol elements, which are optimized for delivering mechanical energy to create substantial fractures in valve calcification. These fractures help restore leaflet mobility and improve valve hemodynamics using a short and simple procedure without the need to implant a new valve.

The design of the Leaflex™ was based on the company's extensive research in the last few years on calcium growth patterns in hundreds of human aortic valves. Pi-Cardia's Leaflex™ technology and mechanism of action are fundamentally different from those of balloon-based (BAV) devices, in that instead of simply dilating the valve, which might lend itself to the short-term recoil seen in patients treated with BAV, the Leaflex™ creates multiple targeted fractures at optimal locations of valve calcification thereby restoring leaflet mobility. This unique fracturing method, while preserving the native valve integrity, may facilitate valve replacement therapies, as well as pave the way for providing durable treatment without implanting a new valve.

Pi-Cardia aims to expand the treatment options in the rapidly growing multi-billion dollar market currently dominated by surgical or trans-catheter aortic valve replacement (SAVR/TAVR). "As much as TAVR improves and becomes a routine procedure in lower surgical risk patients, it is still a relatively complex and expensive implantation procedure, which restricts its use to specific centers and specific cases" says Erez Golan, Pi-Cardia's Founder and CEO. "In today's budget sensitive environment, waiting lists for TAVR are common even in the most developed countries, let alone in emerging markets, where TAVR may not be a viable option for a while." 

"Besides the typical case of an eighty-five-year-old patient with a tri-leaflet aortic valve, whom I will simply have more options to offer, there are also some common anatomies such as bicuspid aortic valves, where TAVR delivers suboptimal results," says Dr. Ganesh Manoharan, Consultant Cardiologist at the Royal Victoria Hospital, Belfast. "We believe that if a simpler, lower-cost alternative existed, which could offer patients a reasonable period of time without symptoms, such a technique could have an important role alongside TAVR."

In 2015, Pi-Cardia successfully completed enrolling the first set of patients in its FIM study in Europe, demonstrating safety and feasibility of the procedure. The funds raised would allow the company to complete the development of a second generation device, and to continue the clinical studies for showing its safety and performance, towards CE-Mark.




Hengtong GEOC To Invest In Israeli Medical Company Insightec

Israeli medical company InSightec, which has developed a platform for non-invasive therapy for the treatment of early detected cancerous tumors and functional diseases of the nervous system using ultrasound, raised US$22m.

The current investment round is the fourth investment round in the company.

The investors were Boston MedTech Advisors, Elbit Imaging, GE Healthcare, York Capital and Chinese VC fund Hengtong GEOC.

To date, the raised US$254mm, most of the amount of Elbit Medical.

Hengtong GEOC, based in Shanghai, China, is a Sino-Israel fund established in 2013 aiming to invest in Israeli startups and help them to penetrate into Chinese market.

InSightec is the pioneer and global leader in MR guided focused ultrasound technology. Founded in 1999 by GE Healthcare (then GE Medical Systems) and Elbit Medical Imaging its mission is to transform its MR guided Focused Ultrasound (MRgFUS) into a clinically viable technology.

Insightec technology currently found in 120 leading medical centers around the world, can be likened to focusing sunlight through a lens: only the center, where all the waves converge, created enough heat to destroy the tumor, while minimizing damage to adjacent organs damage prevention. Its purpose is to replace surgical procedure Non-invasive treatment that allows the patient to return to his speed.