China Invests in Israeli Technology

YERUSHALAYIM -

Israel’s efforts to reach out to the world’s major emerging economies — China, India and Brazil — are starting to pay off, as the latest announcement of Chinese investment in the Israeli technology sector shows.

China Everbright, the investment arm of state-owned China Everbright Group, says it has plans for $100 million to $200 million of investment activity in Israeli technology, Haaretz reported on Monday.

The report comes a week after company CEO Shuang Chen visited Israel and met with the head of the National Economic Council, Eugene Kandel, with the director general of the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry, Sharon Kedmi, and with representatives from 25 domestic technology companies.

Chen told The Marker that Everbright is close to signing some initial investment deals and is also looking to encourage bilateral tech ventures.

He added that while China Everbright will likely invest directly in Israeli firms, it will also explore opportunities for brokering deals on behalf of outside investors.

“Most of the Chinese investments not in government bonds are in financial institutions in Hong Kong or in natural resources,” said Chen.

“We need to broaden our active collaborations with Israeli companies. We want to ease the way for companies and investors in China to look abroad and not fear investing. Chinese industry needs to adapt to today’s conditions and incorporate more technology. On the other hand, Israeli companies can benefit from the distribution channels of Chinese companies to reach immense markets. This requires cooperation as early as the development stage: Complete buyouts aren’t enough,” Chen said.

Chen listed medicine, agriculture, and clean tech as sectors that interest Everbright, which is eager to get involved.

“It is important to us to implement the initial investments in Israeli companies as fast as possible to gain experience. We aren’t afraid of failure,” Chen said.

Listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, China Everbright Ltd. has $10 billion under its management. It focuses on investments in finance, real estate and natural resources.