Monday, 14 September, 2020
Entrepreneur Erel Margalit and Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Lion launch “Margalit Startup City” – The new International Entrepreneurship and Innovation Quarter in Jerusalem
Mayor Moshe Lion announced that the Jerusalem Development Authority (JDA) will invest in a new food-tech initiative as part of Margalit Startup City’s business-public partnership model.
Jerusalem, Israel – Despite Israel’s intensifying COVID-19 crisis, Margalit Startup City was launched today (Monday) in Jerusalem by Jerusalem Venture Partners founder and chairman Erel Margalit, together with Mayor of Jerusalem Moshe Lion. The Quarter will include a 50,000 square meter International Entrepreneurship and Innovation Quarter to house startups and multinational companies, as well as an investment center and international research and development centers – adding thousands of jobs to the city. Alongside the economic center, the Quarter will also feature a cultural and social center, which will also house the Center for National Service Volunteers.
Margalit Startup City is a model for socio-economic development initiated by Erel Margalit designed to promote the advancement of different aspects and areas of the city. The unique model is based on the establishment of innovation centers that connect technological-business entrepreneurship with social and cultural entrepreneurship. Each innovation center creates a thematic ecosystem around it, an engine for collaboration between different stakeholders including investment funds and startups, in collaboration with leading universities, research institutes, and multinational companies. Crucially this is carried out in cooperation with the local municipal and national government. Margalit Startup City is serving as an engine for growth for the next generation of entrepreneurs.
It is a model that is already being implemented at the International Cyber Center in New York, and at the food-tech and cyber initiatives in northern Israel and Beer Sheva respectively.
Participating in the launch event, were nine start-ups representing Jerusalem’s unique ecosystem. They included InnovoPro and Podtech which have developed innovative protein substitutes, the ultra-Orthodox health startup Healables, big data company Cnvrg.io, cyber company Vicarius, Compira Labs media company, SynergyMed led by entrepreneur Annan Copti from East Jerusalem, and Bio-T from innovation company PlayBeyondBio, a joint venture between Margalit Startup City and global pharma giant Astrazeneca.
The event also saw the re-launch of “Margalit Startup City Community” (formerly known as Kehila) to promote social projects, including organizing dozens of volunteers from around the country doing their national service, to work in lower socio-economic neighborhoods to promote entrepreneurship and innovation to help reduce gaps in Israeli society. The organization had so far worked with around 40,000 children since its inception in 2003 by Erel and Debbie Margalit.
Erel Margalit, chairman and founder of Margalit Startup City said at the launch,
“It is precisely during these difficult times, more than ever, that Jerusalem must build itself for the new world after the economic and social crisis caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic. Innovation is the key to rebuilding cities economically, culturally and socially – in Jerusalem, the Galilee, the Negev and Jerusalem. Margalit Startup City Jerusalem will become the new center of the city connecting it to the other innovation hubs across Israel and in major cities around the world, driving forward innovation in the fields of cyber, food technology, digital health, artificial intelligence, and more. The essence of Margalit Startup City underlines that the role of hi-tech is not only to lead the economy, but to lead to social change within the city, to include children who have been left behind in innovation initiatives.”
Mayor of Jerusalem, Moshe Lion, congratulated Erel Margalit on the launch of the new facility, and said,
“We have come together today to launch the renewed Media Quarter that will grow significantly in the coming years. Margalit Startup City will add thousands of additional hi-tech jobs to the city of Jerusalem. Together with Mount Hotzvim and the Hujitech complex currently under construction together with Hebrew University, the Media Quarter will significantly strengthen the city and together with Erel we will make Jerusalem the hi-tech capital of Israel.”
James Patchett, President and CEO of the New York Economic Company, which partners with JVP’s cybertech hub in New York said,
“For the past two years we have enjoyed a strong partnership with Margalit Startup City in creating a global competition to identify the world’s leading cyber security and small business protection technologies in New York City. Earlier this year, I joined Erel in opening Margalit Startup City in New York City. I send my congratulations again on the launch of the next phase of Margalit Startup City Jerusalem. I look forward to continuing our fruitful work together.”