Israel first-quarter 2018 GDP revised up to annualized 4.5 percent growth, reported by Reuters.
This growth, faster than previously forecasted, was boosted by gains in consumer spending, investment and export, the Central Bureau of Statistics said in a second estimate.
Life Sciences Industry in Israel Soars.
A comprehensive report by Israel Advanced Technology Industries and PwC on the life sciences industry in Israel has shown significant growth. The sector currently has 1,450 active companies compared to 800-900 five years ago. A record $1.2 billion was raised in 2017 from local and foreign funds, public offerings, investments by private equity funds, and support from the Israel Innovation Authority. The capital raising was 40 percent higher than in 2016 and 400 percent more than a decade ago. According to the report, $656 million was raised in rounds of more than $20 million last year, compared to $452 million in 2016.
This increase was significant because larger financing rounds enable drug companies to conduct advanced clinical trials and companies with less complex medical devices to build marketing apparatuses.
Volkswagen Opens Tel Aviv Innovation Center.
German carmaker Volkswagen (VW) opened a Tel Aviv innovation center to promote the development of autonomous vehicles, new mobility services, and tailor-made solutions.
The VW campus will be a co-working space called Konnect, and will provide local partners and mobility-based startups direct access to the Volkswagen group for business collaborations as well as support in mentoring and consulting. Volkswagen Group chief customer officer Peter Harris remarked, “I am a strong believer in the technological innovations being developed within the Israeli market and I am convinced that they can help us reach our goal of being one of the global market leaders in sustainable mobility.
Konnect is another step in expanding our activities in Israel and will help our portfolio of brands engage with the Israeli start-up ecosystem.”