UK launch of the Israel Lithuania Technology Hub

Len Judes is Wyn River's associate for both Cyprus and Israel.  Here he writes about the London launch of the Israel Lithuania Technology Hub, of which he is a director. 

On 13th of March, the Lithuanian Embassy in London hosted the first UK seminar of the Israel Lithuania Technology Hub in front of a diverse audience of technology and life science businessmen, members of the Lithuanian expat business community, professional service providers, law firms, tax specialists, and corporate and M&A practitioners.

The Israel Lithuania Technology Hub (ILTH) is a platform launched by the Israel Lithuania Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ILCCI), a non-profit association. The prime purpose of the Hub is to promote economic growth and technological innovation in both Israel and Lithuania by creating a strong partnership between the two countries.

Israel is a phenomenal source of innovation with more start-ups per capita than anywhere else in the world.

Lithuania has an excellent wealth of talent and skilled labour which is cost effective, an interesting geopolitical position bridging Eastern and Western Europe, an understanding of cultures and access to Russia, the CIS markets and of course EU membership, as well as complementary strengths in technology emerging out of excellent academic institutions.

The UK as a whole, and the City of London in particular, are ideal global financial centres, with strong ties to both Lithuania and Israel. The professional legal, accounting and corporate standards of practice are high and are in fact the accepted international standard. England and Wales law and jurisdiction is often applied as governing in such cross border transactions. In light of the above, we have decided to develop the “British dimension” of the Hub activity and intend to run a series of seminars in future months to match UK funding to Israeli and Lithuanian innovation opportunities.

Len Judes and Ronen Gruber, directors of the Israel Lithuania Technology Hub, with seminar delegates at the Lithuanian Embassy in London

Given Israel's small size, most Israeli companies need foreign partners, whether for capital, business and/or product development, as well as access to global markets.

Lithuania is an ideal partner for Israel. With a long history, similar cultural backgrounds, improved access and transport routes and market access to Europe, Lithuania is targeted as a prime technology partner for Israel. It is a preferred market in which investments can be made, start-ups promoted and is an ideal launch pad into the EU as a whole. Both countries will therefore be taking full advantage of the assets each can deliver. The goal of creating an Israel/Lithuania partnership in technology is supported by both governments, via their investment and international cooperation organizations.

The Israel Lithuania Technology Hub's creation followed statements made by both governments in relation to their desire to grow cooperation and mutual investments in the fields of high-tech and innovation and the signing and creating of a joint R&D fund. Further elaboration on the workings of the ILTH, the application process of candidates and the scope of services, can be found on the website: www.ilth.org

In recognizing that one of the most significant challenges of any start up or young company, is funding and investment, whether for seed investment or other early stage funding, the Hub directors make appropriate introductions to local funds and angel investor groups, however, this remains a major hurdle to overcome. It is therefore recognized that investments should be sought in other countries too. A separate but related matter is that of sound legal structuring, good corporate governance etc, which would appeal to investors at the outset. For that reason, the British link in the relationship is now being added.  We look forward to reporting on further funding success in the near future.

For more information please consult the website www.ilth.org or contact Len Judes at len@jylaw.il.

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