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Monday, April 30, 2007

Radware's Warchest

Radware just purchased Covelight Systems for $16 million. Radware has a warchest of $163 million in cash for their acquisition plans to strengthen its position in the enterprise market.

It runs in the family

Reuters Group has purchased Israeli startup ClearForest for $30 million. ClearForest developed text analysis software. The company's founder and CTO is Dr Yonatan Aumann, son of Nobel prize winner Prof. Israel Aumann

All the News...

Lev Leviav's Africa-Israel just purchased the New York Times Building for $525 million. This July, the New York Times will be evacuating that building and moving to the New New York Times Building.

Moving Out

Going to the IT trade shows, one usually sees an Ultra-Orthodox gentleman incongruously being heavily courted by the IT elites.

That was Atzmon Mins who, after 6 years, just stepped as CTO of Amidar.

Before Amidar, Mins was VP Technology at DHL, and before that a manager at Visa and Amdocs.

Amidar is a government company that supplies low-income housing.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Smooth as a baby's bottom...

Alma Laser just won FDA approval for their laser anti-wrinkle treatment. Alma Lasers have been in a number of lawsuits and countersuits with their competitors over the last year. Some were won, and some were settled and resulted in licensing agreements.

Delek Drills Deep

Delek just purchased 25% of a North Sea Oil concession.

Not tonight honey

Teva is investing NIS 1.5 million to launch Acamol Focus - their version of Excedrin Migraine.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Word on the $treet

Will the Bank of Israel openly intervene by next week to prevent the shekel from rising further (or the dollar dropping)? Will they start selling Shekels?

Wait and see.

Electric going mobile

LX Mobile sold a system for reading the thousands of Smart Meters the Israel Electric Company has installed - including 400 mobile PDAs from Psion Teklogix for reading the meters remotely . Altogether, a deal valued at a few hundred thousand dollars.

Matrix is really Hungry

Matrix just bought 60% of Tangram-Soft for over NIS 15 million, plus another few million they will be investing in the company.

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Big in Israel

Jacky Ben-Zaken and Avraham Nanikashvilli bought the Kanyon Hasharon (Mall) for NIS 344 million. The deal was mediated by Roni Maanah - Israel's latest commercial property wunderkind. Roni did some big deals recently with Arkadi Gedaymak and Yeshayahu Boymelgreen.

Small in Japan

Given Imaging has won approval to sell their PillCam (Small Bowel) capsules in Japan.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Vote - JIBS

If you enjoy reading DigitalIsrael...if you find our information interesting...if you found our posts useful...if you want to show your support...

Please vote for DigitalIsrael in the JIBS (Jewish-Israeli Blog Awards) in the following 2 categories.

Best News/Current Events Blog

Best of the Rest Blog

Thank you.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Paz Gas

Paz is building a private $60 million, 43 Watt power station in Ashdod - run on Natural Gas (purchased from Delek).

Friday, April 20, 2007

Doing Tshuva

It's to early in the season to be doing Tshuva, but Itsik just sold 16,000 apartments in Canada, raking in a cool $2 Billion dollars.

Shari Arison sure does like her bank

Shari has bought another $40 million in shares of Bank Hapoalim, upping her ownership to just over 20%. She already owned controlling interest.

Word on the $treet

Stanley Fischer (Govenor of the Bank of Israel) is calling for the public to write in and present their arguments as to how and when to cancel publishing representative foreign exchange rates.

Fisher really believes in invisible hands and free market forces - even after his little intervention correction last week.

If the Bank of Israel doesn't do it, someone else will. Certainly without the Bank of Israel's "correction", last week's slide may have reached thr 3.96 level.

Good for him.

HP widens their market

HP will now begin selling their (Pavilion) Desktop PCs to the general Israeli market.

So much bandwidth...

Cellcom has bandwidth to spare. Cellcom is offering a new service that will connect the video from any (Edge) 2.75G cellphone to your PC (via their website) for free.

Certainly better than a shopping network.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Low Emmisions at Datasafe

Datasafe just completed migrating all 250 of its fleet of cars from benzene to a liquid gas combination through the company J GAZ.
They expect it to increase engine efficiency while reducing damage to the environment.
They'll need to change the color of their logo to green.

Winning the Lotto

HP & Matrix won the Miphal Hapayis (Lotto) tender to supply computers to educational institutions (schools) countrywide at a deal that can reach up to NIS 90 Million.



Malam will be installing SAP at Gilat Satellite worldwide in a project valued at NIS 20 million. Malam beat out Ness (SAP distributer) who also answered the tender with SAP.

IBM is installing SAP at Yafora (drink company). Price unknown.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Social Devolution

You know, sometimes in all the excitement of major announcement one forgets to mention the small details.

While Bituach Leumi management is planning to issue their (r)evolutionry tender to downsize off the mainframe, there is one little hitch in their plans.

It’s called the Bituach Leumi Worker’s Committee (Va'ad HaOvdim).

Bituach Leumi has been negotiating for 3 years (unsuccessfully) to change certain aspects of their agreement with the workers. This plan would affect the majority of the IT workers who group up on the Bituach Leumi mainframe and know nothing else.

It would be an understatement to say that after 3 years of negotiating the Va'ad and Bituach Leumi haven’t found common ground on the downsizing (among other things) - they aren’t even playing in the same universe.

Keep watching this space, but don’t hold your breath.

Aman buys again

Aman Computer (or is it Aman-SCP, or is PAmam now) continues to buy up other small Israeli companies for their products and services. They've had a very mixed bag of results from this philosophy, but they're clearly growing (both in Israel and internationally), so they must be doing something right.

AMD opens in Israel

AMD is opening in Israel. Not a research or development facility like Intel, but rather a sales and marketing facility. The purpose - to help companies and organizations decide to use AMD chips - such as for answering government tenders.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

So that explains all the spam

Normally, automated emails from El Al go right into my Junk folder and soon after erased. I'm going to have to pay more attention from now on.

El Al openly distributed the emails of all their Gold/Platinum members in their Pre-Pesach email.

That explains the severe increase in spam coming from Israeli spam "companies" like Pelican in Matan and Ostitan in Tel Aviv.

Microsoft hiring

Microsoft is looking to hire 150 programmers for their new development center opening in Herzilia Pituach.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Social (R)evolution

If this happens, this will be the one of the largest projects in Israel. The ramifications are enormous.

They've talked about it for years. They've instituted bits and pieces over time, but now it appears to be true.

Bituach Leumi (Social Security) has announced they will be issuing a tender to replace their mainframe and all its embedded software with newer, more open systems and packages. (Just two years ago, at Bituach Leumi’s request, some members of DigitalIsrael quietly wrote up a study of one possible alternative, the internal ramifications of such a project, and how it should be safely implemented.)

Currently all of Bituach Leumi's major financial transactions are done on, or stored on the mainframe.

This will clearly be a serious blow for IBM Israel (if they don't win the tender) as Bituach Leumi currently pays IBM the majority of the Mainframe license fees for all of their mainframes (and mainframe upgrades) and software such as MVS, DB2, CICS, etc - And we are talking serious million$.

Bituach Leumi has been looking into alternatives to the mainframe for years.

A project of this magnitude will provide jobs and projects for decades for whichever consortium of companies wins this prize.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Keep the Roads Rolling

Solel Boneh has won a BOT project with Guatemala to build them a road. For $672 million dollars. Not bad.


b-Bet you thought it was about Bezeq (again).

Nope. After shoving unwanted video ads down the message pipes of Cellcom users, Cellcom is now pushing bCellcom – their shopping network. Gee thanks.

Meanwhile, Cellcom is sitting on a goldmine it is completely ignoring – the AirCard line of products and concept.

AirCard allows Cellcom to provide truly wireless highspeed internet wherever you are (the other providers provide wireless too, but apparently nowhere near as fast).

b-But where is the desktop router? Where is the (Sierra) USB Aircard Modem?

(b)Cellcom could directly be taking on Bezeq in the ADSL/ISP market head to head, but instead they are only providing a repackaged Sierra PCMCIA AirCards, which if you were to use it like you surf with Bezeq it would cost you a lot more at Cellcom’s prices.

So instead they are offering us yet another shopping network (perhaps their wireless network isn’t up for the challenge?).


Friday, April 13, 2007

Word on the $treet

Did the Bank of Israel quietly (secretly) intervene with dollar/shekel trading today (despite Stanley saying he wouldn't)?

Bank of Israel listed the dollar as not dropping below 4.066, though actual bank trading certainly happened below that number.

Was it a "correction" or an "intervention"?

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Aladdin's Buys the Lampshop

Aladdin is cash heavy and now it's buyback time.

Word on the $treet

Word on the $treet is that the dollar will fall to NIS 3.96.
As of this post the dollar has already fallen below 4.1.

Ness, SAP, and the Municipalities

Ness (local distributor of SAP) signed an agreement with LADPC (which supplies computing services to a large number of municipalities in Israel) in which LAPDC will install SAP in the municipalities they handle.

Cheap Labor

Matrix purchased controlling interest in the Bulgarian outsourcing company owned by Unicoders for 2 million dollars, getting in return 150 new employees. Matrix made the purchase through their subsidiary Net-Shore.

Of course the Bulgarian company was actually formed by 2 Israelis.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Stanley Fisher on Problem Solving

"Problems aren’t solved in Israel until they reach crisis dimensions, and that’s a pity."

Comverse finds its head

After 5 months without a leader, Comverse has finally appointed a new CEO (Andre Dahan).

Comverse lost it's previous CEO (and founder) after he ran away to Africa to avoid being arrested for backdating the company's stock options (as apparently did other Comverse execs).

One1 wins Delek ERP project

One1 won a project to Install at Delek an Oracle ERP system for NIS 10M.

Alon is a Afloat

Alon USA shares have jumped big time recently, just ahead of Alon Israel's upcoming IPO.

Furthermore, Alon USA just won a contract to supply fuel to the US Army ($138 Million). Delek also won a part of that contract for $38 Million.

Basil-2 to strike Israel

By 2009 Israeli banks will be required to institute Basil-2. Basil-2 will affect how (and how much) the banks offer credit. We'll see if that goes through on time - or at all.

Aladdin makes a wish

Aladdin announced that it is supplying its eSafe and eToken solution to an Indian educational consortium for a sum in the area of $50,000,000. Talk about rubbing the right lamp.

Retalix wins again

185 7-Eleven stores in Sweden and Norway have installed Retalix's Storepoint POS software. Retalix first entered the 7-Eleven chain some 4 years ago in the US. The US based 7-Eleven stores are owned by Alon USA (a subsidiary of Alon Israel Oil Co. LTD).

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Shekel on the Move

Shekel keeps rising (or the dollar keeps falling depending on your perspective) over the Passover holiday.

Teva to hire

After receiving US FDA approval on its new plant in Har Hotzvim (Jerusalem Technology Park) Teva will be hiring an additional 200 employees (beyond the 300 already working in the current Jerusalem facility.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

Twisting in the Wind

It was just announced that Bank Discount won the Civil Servants Banking Tender.

Bank Mizrachi-Tfachot just purchased Bank Yahav (for some $237 million dollars), which until today held the monopoly on the service. Presumably they bought it under the assumption they would either win the tender or sidestep it.

Bank Discount will now be offering the 140,000 Israeli civil servants zero-fee banking services, something the rest of the country is not privileged to have.

After Pesach

Call up anybody to do business these past few days, and you find out that all business has stopped until "after Pesach"... same with this blog (probably).

Enjoy the holiday.