February 5, 2020 / 12:57 PM / 16 days ago

Siemens venture arm Next47 to boost investment in Israeli high-tech

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Next47, the venture firm backed by German engineering company Siemens, expects another investment in Israel in the next few months, company officials said.

Last week, Next47 — a global tech fund with $1.2 billion of commitments from Siemens — opened a new office in Herzliya, Israel’s version of Silicon Valley just north of Tel Aviv to tap into the country’s vibrant tech sector.

Next47 has made four investments in Israel including cyber tech firm Claroty and machine data analytics platform Logz.io. It has not disclosed how much it invested so far.

Matthew Cowan, a partner at Next47, said the fund sought to substantially increase its investments in Israel, particularly in companies selling to other businesses, rather than focusing on consumers.

He noted Next47 prefers to lead funding rounds with investments of $5-$35 million but only in companies that already had a seed round and are now generating revenue.

“We take a very long term view of the tech industry,” Cowan told Reuters, adding that there is no requirement to forge a business relationship with Siemens.

Moshe Zilberstein, who heads the Israel office, said Next47 is looking to invest in startups in cyber, computer vision, autonomous cars, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI).

“In the AI space, there are so many advancements out of Israel,” he said.

Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Tova Cohen

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