Over the past few weeks, Roman Abramovich has invested in two more Israeli startups - social engagement platform Spot.IM and diabetes treatment and management solutions company DreaMed Diabetes.
The Russian Jewish billionaire has now built up a substantial high-tech startup portfolio through his investment companies, which include Norma Investments, Ervington Investments and Millhouse. Abramovich was the lead investor in financing rounds for music-sharing startup Music Messenger, Israeli investment network iAngels, and online video marketing company AnyClip Media.
His other portfolio companies include demand transit company Via, nanotech battery charger developer StoreDot, electronic capsule developer MelCap, and pipe inspection company AcousticEye. He has also invested in AltaIR a venture capital fund focusing on early-stage Israeli start-ups investments.
These latest investments come amid reports that Poalim IBI Underwriting and Investments (TASE: PIU) is set to lead an IPO by Roman Abramovich and Oded Kobo's Shellanoo Group, which is developing apps for smartphones and online services. Moreover, Abramovich and Kobo have also been linked with a bid for troubled Israeli mobile phone operator Golan Telecom.
Abramovich is a frequent visitor to Israel where he usually bases himself in Tel Aviv's Norman Hotel. In fact his biggest investment in Israel was the NIS 100 million acquisition of the Varsano Hotel in Tel Aviv's Neve Tzedek quarter in April 2015, which he is now converting into his Israeli residence. He has commissioned architectural designs for the extensions he wishes to add onto his new home, which is a preserved building, and it will take some years until planning permission is received and construction completed.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on August 10, 2016
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