When Torah Meets Hi-Tech

New initiative promotes ultra-Orthodox Jewish hi-tech companies. Yes, they exist

By Yossi Aloni | | Topics: Startup Nation
Israeli startup scene grows with ultra-Orthodox companies.
Photo: Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs

An extraordinary event was held at the Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem that brought together ultra-Orthodox Jewish startups with dozens of diplomats, venture capitalists and corporate representatives from around the world.

Emerging ultra-Orthodox startups aim to help entrepreneurs within the community to access the global hi-tech markets. “Bizlabs” is an ultra-Orthodox innovation technology incubator and in cooperation with Israel’s Foreign Ministry graduates had a chance to show off their achievements to a global audience.

“The developers in the Bizlabs program are faithful to the ultra-Orthodox way of life and the Jewish concept of values ​​and tradition,” said Moti Eichler, Chairman and Founder of Global Brothers. “The ability to combine strict Torah observance and technological entrepreneurship is the basis for across-the-borders global success for the ultra-Orthodox startups,” Eichler said.

 

Torah-based tech

CEO of the KMH Mordechai Feldstein Foundation a philanthropic organization supporting the orthodox start-ups is based on the words of King David said “Praiseworthy is he who is thoughtful of the needy” (Psalms 41:1), “The challenge for all of us is how you on the one hand with start-ups and the technological world and we on the other hand remaining in the social world all remain true to our origins, our way of life and even the way we dress.”

The technological ventures presented at the event are on the cutting edge of the ultra-Orthodox high-tech industry. The Bizlabs start-up program operates from the ultra-Orthodox entrepreneurial and business complex – Bismax – established by the KMH Foundation, Jerusalem Development Authority and Global Brothers. This is the most comprehensive program to date offering significant support for ultra-Orthodox startups and it is powered with the help of Google, KPMG Israeli venture funding, Amazon and the Hebrew University, Jerusalem.

Bizlabs helps bridge the gaps in investment in Orthodox hi-tech compared to their secular counterparts including professional workshops, knowledge acquisition, relevant tools and collaboration with international bodies, professional mentors and a broad and active investor opportunity.

Among the diplomats who attended the event were representatives of the United States Embassy, ​​the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and other representatives from many European, Asian, South American countries and Africa. Economic experts and trade representatives expressed their admiration for progress the technology and creativity of the ultra-Orthodox startups.