Youth and Hi-tech in Israel.
(photo credit: ING IMAGE/ASAP)
The Discover Global Network, alongside Gefen Capital, is sponsoring its first start-up competition in Israel, focusing on financial-technology companies.
“We are very happy about the opportunity to work with Discover and strive to incorporate our knowledge and experience in the field of financial technology in order to develop new solutions that will improve the existing processes in the financial sector,” said Limor Ganot, managing partner of Gefen Capital.
Gefen is an investment group that targets high-growth Israeli start-ups with disruptive technologies and represents both US and Israeli investors. Partners at Gefen together with Ganot are Sheldon (Shelly) Stein, who previously served as a Vice Chairman at Bank of America and is currently president of Southern Glazer’s Wine and Spirits, and David Wiessman, who is an accomplished Israeli businessman and entrepreneur that owns one of the four leading Fuel marketing and C - Store operators in Israel.
The contest will give three start-ups the opportunity to present at Discover’s booth at Money20/20, the world’s largest payments & financial services innovation event, which will take place in Las Vegas in late October.
The event will be an incredible opportunity to showcase their companies in front of thousands of investors, financial companies and potential clients, Ganot said.
The competing start-ups will have to have a working prototype of a product or solution that increases customer experience or efficiency in the financial field.
Discover and Gefen will begin accepting applications on September 5, and announce winners 10 days later, who will receive travel stipends and registration to the Money20/20 conference, as well as an equity investment from Gefen Capital.
The opportunity to work with Discover, Ganot said, was particularly exciting given that it is the third-largest payment service provider in the world and one of the largest issuers of credit in the US.
“In light of the connections between Gefen’s managers in the United States, we believe that we will be able to contribute greatly to companies whose target market is in the US,” Ganot said.
Although Discover is linked to the Diner’s Club in Israel, the contest will be its first foray into Israel under its American brand name.