Investing in: Israel

10 Israeli high-tech areas making waves

Ferry Biedermann, special to

Whether it's cybersecurity, drones or medical marijuana, Israel is at the forefront of some of the most important high-tech developments in the world. The small Middle Eastern country of just over 8 million people fashions itself as the "Start-up nation". Here are 10 areas that contribute to that image:


Israel's cybersecurity sector is world leading with giants such as Check Point and CyberArk as well as more recent start-ups such as GuardiCore and Fireglass. It attracted more than $680 million in funding in 2016, which amounts to some 15 percent of capital raised for the sector globally. The field is fed by graduates from the Israeli military and the intelligence services, particularly , and produced 83 start-ups last year alone. Check Point, among others, is listed on the NASDAQ and is the Israeli company with the highest market capitalization on the index: $17.8 billion.

Transport and navigation

A still image from a Mobileye video.
Source: Mobileye

's $15.3 billion acquisition of Israeli autonomous driving technology firm Mobileye in April was the largest high-tech business deal in Israel's history. It set the high-tech sector abuzz and dwarfed a previous deal in a related field, 's 2013 takeover of Israeli navigation app Waze for $1.15 billion. Among the plethora of other Israeli firms making waves in this sector are Uber-rival Gett, public transport app Moovit, and Argus, which provides cybersecurity for automotive systems. Car data collector and distributor Otonomo is another start-up to watch, chances are it will be watching you.

Medical technology

Medical Realities

As with many other high-tech fields, Israel's medical technology advances have come in large part from the defense sector. One company, based in Ohio but started by two Israelis, is Surgical Theater, where two former air force officers use virtual reality flight simulator technology in brain surgery modeling. Other start-ups also are highly interdisciplinary