The 100 Most Influential People In Israeli Hi-Tech In 2015

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Israeli hi-tech now not only impacts the local market, but also well beyond the Mediterranean. This year we decided to identify and map the key figures in Israel’s startup scene. These entrepreneurs, investors, founders, journalists, and startup professionals shape where Israeli hi-tech is going more than anyone else. Here are the 100 most influential people (by alphabetical order) in the world of Israeli startups in 2015, a Geektime project that has taken several months and we are pleased to share with you.

Editor's note: We are presenting the two selections on the list with Hebrew University connections, either as current faculty or former students. The link to the full list is at the bottom of the page.

12. Barry Levenfeld – Partner, Yigal Arnon & Co. Law Firm

Barry Levenfeld

Barry Levenfeld joined the offices of Yigal Arnon and Co. as an attorney in 1988 and in 1992, became a partner. Levenfeld represents Israeli and international companies in various ventures at the firm, including managing deals, joint ventures, and IPOs. He has overseen the handling of several major mergers and acquisitions, including when Trusteer was acquired by IBM for an estimated $800 million. Additionally, he represents clients’ distribution agreements, OEM agreements, licensing and marketing, digital trading, and a variety of subjects related to intellectual property. The scope of his clients ranges from technological and life sciences startups to international tech giants.

Levenfeld also lectures at the law department at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, is a member of the management committee of the Man, Nature, Justice Foundation, and is one of the organizers and participants in the annual Israeli charity bike ride that raises money for the ALYN Woldenberg Family Hospital and rehabilitation center in Jerusalem. He has a law degree from Harvard University.

31. Gil Ben-Artzy — Co-Founder, UpWest Labs

Gil Ben-Artzy

Ben-Artzy is known for his desire to assist Israeli entrepreneurs at home in Israel and in Silicon Valley. He joined Yahoo’s Israeli business development group in 2005, working on local strategies and acquisitions, and spearheaded their first Israeli acquisition, FoxyTunes. Later on, he helped develop the company’s first R&D center in Haifa and was eventually promoted to VP of Management.

In 2012, he founded accelerator and investment program UpWest Labs with Shuly Galili and Liron Petrushka. Its entrepreneurs are awarded tens of thousands of dollars, workspace and accommodations. They also gain access to investors, venture capital firms, mentors, advisors, and potential clients. To date, the company has invested in over 50 companies with three acquisitions in 2014.

He has served as an advisor at Boston Consulting Group in New York, where he advised Fortune 500 companies. Ben-Artzy holds a B.A. in Business and Economics from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and an M.A. with Honors from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School of Business.

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