Kibbutz Revivim in the Ramat Hanegev region is set to become Israel's first kibbutz to launch a startup accelerator. To be called Hamadgera, the first three month program for startups will open in October. Kibbutz Revivim is best known in the businesses world as a manufacturer of plastic components for the automotive industry through its companies Ravel, Raviv and Arkal.
The Revivim accelerator will be unique on the Israeli high-tech landscape not only because of its distance from the high-tech heartlands in central Israel but because it will also offer three months free residential accommodation on the kibbutz for participants in the program.
The accelerator will accept early stage startups in the field of Internet and mobile including those yet to reach the proof of viability or beta-site stages. Entrepreneurs will receive assistance and guidance in design and user experience services, help in building business models, marketing strategy and more.
The accelerator founders and managers are Lion David from Kibbutz Revivim and Elad Yeori from Kibbutz Erez. Hamadgera, translated from Hebrew to English means hatchery or incubator, and the name has more than high-tech significance because in the past the building served as an incubator for poultry and eggs.
Kibbutz Revivim business manager David Ben-Lulu said that opening the accelerator is a natural step for Revivim and marks the entry of kibbutz industry into the world of entrepreneurship and venture capital. He said, "The contribution of traditional kibbutz industry to the Israeli economy is well known and it is one of the engines of growth of the country's economy. From our point of view this is a synergistic step for the kibbutz's operations that are intrinsically entrepreneurial."
He added, "We have no doubt that in the future, we will see more and more kibbutzim investing in startups or setting up funds in order to become major players in Israel's high-tech industry."
Kibbutz Revivim's partners in the accelerator include Microsoft, which will grant a package of services worth thousands of dollars to each team of entrepreneurs, Wix.com Ltd. (Nasdaq: WIX), which will provide professional support to entrepreneyrs, and others.
Registration for the first program is open until August 26 on the Madgera website.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on July 26, 2015
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