Ashdod Port Company signs agreement with Port of Barcelona to promote Israeli innovation in Europe

According to Orna Hozman Bechor: “Our technology incubator has a great deal to offer in order to make the world of shipping and ports more efficient."

 A NAVAL vessel (not seen) escorts the ‘Mavi Marmara’ to Ashdod Port, post-raid by Israeli marines, May 31, 2010. (photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/FLASH90)
A NAVAL vessel (not seen) escorts the ‘Mavi Marmara’ to Ashdod Port, post-raid by Israeli marines, May 31, 2010.
(photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/FLASH90)

A delegation from the Ashdod Port Company, which includes leading start-ups from the port’s Innovation Incubator, will travel to the Port of Barcelona on Monday to sign a cooperation agreement on technological innovation.

“The Ashdod Port Company continues to act vigorously to expand collaboration on innovation with the world’s leading ports,” according to the chairwoman of the port’s board of directors, Orna Hozman Bechor, who is leading the delegation.

“The Israeli innovation that we foster in our technology incubators has a great deal to offer in a variety of fields that will make the world of shipping and ports more efficient, commencing with the field of logistics and transportation and up to and including control systems and green energy.”

As part of the agreement, Israeli start-ups will be able to conduct a pilot program at the Port of Barcelona, one of the largest in Europe, after going through a similar process at the Ashdod Port.

“The Israeli innovation that we foster in our technology incubators has a great deal to offer in a variety of fields that will make the world of shipping and ports more efficient, commencing with the field of logistics and transportation and up to and including control systems and green energy.”

Orna Hozman Bechor

The start-ups will benefit from field conditions in which they can implement their developments, and will be accompanied by an innovation agent acting on behalf of the port, alongside the expansion of business and technological opportunities in the Port of Barcelona.

A WORKER at Ashdod port coordinates a crane to hang a giant Israeli national flag. (credit: REUTERS/AMIR COHEN)A WORKER at Ashdod port coordinates a crane to hang a giant Israeli national flag. (credit: REUTERS/AMIR COHEN)

A similar representation has already begun to operate at Port Newark in the US, in cooperation with the Port Authority and the New York and New Jersey Railways, with an annual budget of approximately $8 billion. During this cooperation, five start-ups operating in the technology incubator of the Ashdod Port commenced a pilot program at Port Newark.

Among the start-ups that will be participating in the delegation and which will present their ventures at the Port of Barcelona are two cyber protection companies: CYBER 2.0, which has developed technology to prevent the spread of cyberattacks within the corporate network, and Cyberview, which has developed an ongoing and effective information security management platform.

Also part of the delegation are Airwayz, which is responsible for an operating system that controls a fleet of drones and enables effective supervision, and EnWize, which developed augmented and virtual reality technology for training operations teams in order to help prevent mistakes and create a safe work environment.

Captain’s Eye, which offers a network of advanced cameras and image processing that help identify and quickly deal with accidents and security threats, as well as seven other Israeli start-ups round off the delegation.

The technology incubator at Ashdod Port was established last year as part of the port’s innovation strategy and has accompanied over 60 start-ups in various fields – including operations, logistics, cyber protection, safety, etc.

Recent investments

Recently, the Ashdod Port Board of Directors announced an investment of approximately NIS 4.5 million in four of the start-ups operating at the incubator, through the purchase of technologies and the signing of a royalty agreement.

The four start-ups, two of them in the cyber protection field, were carefully selected upon the completion of a pilot program that lasted about six months on average, in which the technologies they developed were incorporated into the work of the port.

Expanding the activity of the start-ups to leading ports around the world is an important milestone for reinforcing their international, technological and economic connections and their ventures, as well as of Ashdod Port and the entire State of Israel as the start-up nation.

“Innovation and digital transformation are creating a new paradigm in all sectors of the economy, and this does not skip over ports,” Port of Barcelona President Damia Calvet said. “At the Port of Barcelona we are convinced that we must welcome the arrival of innovation and new technologies. Tools such as big data, blockchain, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things will allow us to become more efficient and improve our sustainability and competitiveness.

Calvet insisted that “we must do this in cooperation with other ports in the world and with the private sector by encouraging start-ups and business entrepreneurship. The Mediterranean Sea has suitable conditions for the development of a network of smart ports. Through digital transformation and hosting incubators of innovation in the ports, we will be able to increase growth and employ more workers.”