More than 350 startups with Israeli founders have set up shop in New York, up from 60 five years ago, says Guy Franklin, general manager of SOSA NYC, a local tech hub for his countrymen and who has cataloged the phenomenon. Three of the five biggest funding rounds in New York last year were for companies run by Israelis or Israeli-Americans: co-working business WeWork, real estate app Compass and ride-sharing company Via.
New York wasn’t always the first stop for ambitious Israeli tech founders. When Eyal Bino first moved to the city more than 10 years ago, California was the land of opportunity. “For most Israeli entrepreneurs and VCs, New York was a stopover on their way to the Valley,” says Bino, who now runs ICONYC, a startup accelerator that helps young Israeli companies find their feet in New York.
What changed? Mostly New York’s tech scene grew up and now provides a real alternative to Silicon Valley because it’s a major center for finance, media and advertising. As software works itself into every industry and facet of business, the city’s position at the center of global commerce is turning it into a tech powerhouse. Read More.