The business relationship between Israel and the United Arab Emirates has flourished since the historic signing of the Abraham Accords in 2020, which marked the normalization of relations between the two countries. In the intervening years, more and more business partnerships, start-ups and ventures have sprouted in the newly defined space – and they are now joined by the first Emirati-Israeli venture capital fund, Synaptech Capital.
The fund, which aims to raise $100m. as its first move, will invest in Israeli and Emirati start-ups developing cybersecurity, smart city, insure-tech, fintech and public safety technologies. It intends to relocate them to the fund’s Abu Dhabi incubator, and later create a corporate innovation hub for regional businesses to develop and collaborate.
Synaptech Capital was founded by Tomer Avnon, founder and president of Avnon Group; and Obediah Ayton, COO of The Private Investment Group. In the wake of the Abraham Accords, Synaptech Capital’s mission is to create a diverse ecosystem of innovative companies in the UAE, utilizing Israeli knowledge and experience in the start-up and innovation domains to develop meaningful collaboration and create business opportunities in the Middle East.
“Synaptech is truly groundbreaking in the unique collaboration it brings to the region,” said Avnon. “Through commitment and cultivation of relationships that are based on a mutual understanding, Synaptech brings the spirit of the ‘Start-up Nation” to the UAE and will contribute to building an innovative ecosystem of disruptive technologies. This kind of collaboration is as inspiring as it is effective because it brings entire nations together, through creating new opportunities for growth on both sides, and for the entire region as a whole.”
The fund was unveiled at a dedicated event in Abu Dhabi, where leading Middle Eastern and European investment groups, entrepreneurs, and government officials gathered in Abu Dhabi’s Four Seasons Hotel. The event highlighted new technology implementation capabilities such as artificial intelligence, cybersecurity and quantum computing.
“The key focus of the event is to share the roadmap of what is to be achieved under the roof of Abu Dhabi Global Market, with our innovation hub, deep tech academy and investment capital from international markets,” said Ayton.
The rapid development of Israel’s connection with the UAE is manifesting in tourism and travel, as well: earlier this month the Israel Tourism Ministry held an in-person tourism seminar for the first time in Dubai at Expo 2020. The conference brought together about 15 Israeli tourism professionals with about 25 tour operators in the United Emirates with a view to expanding bilateral tourism.
Additionally, the Emirates airline has confirmed that it will be commencing daily services to Tel Aviv as of 23 June 2022. “Emirates is committed to creating new opportunities for business and tourism, and strengthening the bilateral ties between the UAE and Israel,” said Adnan Kazim, Emirates’ chief commercial officer. “We are confident that our new services will have a positive impact on enhancing Israel’s connectivity to a wealth of global destinations, and we thank the UAE and Israeli authorities for their ongoing support in making this service possible.”