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Microsoft will make its sixth investment in Israel's technology market with an agreement announced Tuesday to buy Ra'anana-based start-up Gteko Ltd.
The acquisition price was not disclosed, but sources close to the transaction estimated the price tag at around $100 million.
"Joining forces with Gteko is yet another building block in the expansion of our technological operations in Israel and it will help enhance our efforts to work together with other elements in the industry to help provide a superior PC experience for our customers," said Moshe Lichtman, president of MS Israel R&D Center.
Gteko, which was founded in 1992, specializes in software tailored for self help and remote support solutions. The software allows users to either solve problems by themselves using self-help tools or go onto a support page and connect to a technician to help troubleshoot their issues.
"By the end of the decade, Microsoft will significantly expand its operations in the consumer sector, to which end advanced support solutions are required," Lichtman said. "Gteko's leadership in providing simple solutions to a wide range of PC problems made this a particularly attractive opportunity for Microsoft."
Leading technology companies such as Hewlett-Packard, Cisco-Linksys and Canon, rely on Gteko's products for their ability to make computers and peripherals easier to use, while significantly contributing to the reduction of vendor support costs.
"Our companies have many complementary strengths and a closely aligned vision for delivering leading PC problem-solving solutions to customers directly and with our partners," said Dr. Joshua Glazer, chief executive officer of Gteko. "Together, Microsoft and Gteko have exceptionally deep technology expertise to offer this market."
In 2004, Gteko, received an investment of $12m. co-led by Pitango Venture Capital and Intel Digital Home Fund for the development of new products to improve the accessibility of digital home technology.
In May this year, Gteko was included in the Red Herring 100 Europe, a selection of the 100 most promising private companies based in the EMEA region, which play a leading role in innovation and technology.