(photo credit: Ariel Jerozolimski [file])
Amir Aviv, the CEO of Poalim Capital Markets, Bank Hapoalim’s investment banking
arm, sees the firm as the entry point to the Israeli market.
to position ourselves as a gateway to and from Israel for companies that want to
sell themselves outside Israel and investors that want to come in,” he said in
an interview with The Jerusalem Post.
According to Aviv, who has been
with the group for 10 of the 23 years the investment bank has been around,
outside interest in the Israeli market is as strong as ever, both from the US,
where PCM has a New York office, and from London.
“I’m seeing more and
more overseas interest in Israel,” he said. “It presents an interesting
Interest used to be more focused on the hi-tech sector,
Aviv said. But Israeli exporters have been attracting more foreign attention,
including companies that play mostly within the Israeli domestic market, he
Part of that is the result of a quickly professionalizing class of
Israeli managers, who have benefited from exposure to international corporations
and business dealings, Aviv said.
“The management teams are much more
and investors feel comfortable investing with them,”
Asked what sort of companies catch his eye, Aviv said: “When we
invest, we’re looking for more mature situations. We like to see cash-flow, we
like to see tangible assets. But in technology we invest in the early stage –
those are technologies we like to adopt.”
Among its most interesting
funds in recent years are public- private partnerships that invest in Israeli
infrastructure, such as highways, light-rail projects and urban renewal
Although 95 percent of the funds were raised from domestic
investors, their profitability will make them attractive to foreign investors as
well, Aviv said.
But PCM is also looking outward.
It has a Beijing
branch, Poalim Asia Direct, and a cooperation agreement with YES BANK in India,
he said.This article was produced in conjunction with Bank Hapoalim.