Haim Saban to invest $100m in Israeli startups

Haim Saban

Saban Ventures will invest in startups in the mobile, social networks, ecommerce and digital media sectors.

Israeli-born billionaire Haim Saban has set up a new fund to invest $100 million in Israeli startups. The fund will invest in startups in the mobile, social networks, ecommerce and digital media sectors in which there is synergy with Saban's other businesses including Israeli mobile operator Partner Communications Ltd. (Nasdaq: PTNR; TASE: PTNR). The fund does not automatically reject the idea of investing in other fields such as cloud computing and fintech, which are popular with venture capital investors.

The Saban Ventures fund will be managed by Barak Pridor who has more than 20 years of experience in communications and technology market. Pridor was formally a senior manager at Reuters after it acquired Clearforest where he was CEO.

Saban, 71, is one of Israel's richest billionaires and the US-based businessman is worth $3.5 billion, according to "Forbes." He own partner and formerly had a major stake in Bezeq Israeli Telecommunication Co. Ltd. (TASE: BEZQ). He has previously invested in Israeli startups including $15 million in Shaul Olmert's PlayBuzz through Saban Capital. He has also invested in Elbit Systems Ltd. (Nasdaq: ESLT; TASE: ESLT) startup Everysight, which is developing smart glasses for cyclists.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on February 21, 2016

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2016

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