The Automotive Equipment Group, a representative of Suzuki, Mann and Bridgestone Tires which specializes in importing and marketing cars, is expanding its operations and investing NIS 2.5 million in two agricultural start-ups.One is Agrint, established in 2017 by Yehonatan Ben Hamozeg, the former head of IDF Unit 8200, the Israeli army's premier intelligence unit.
Valued at $60 million, it produces sensors for detecting pests on farms and in orchards. One sensor is for date producers who need to control the spread of palm weevil beetles.
The second company is Green Onyx, founded in 2013 by cancer researcher Tzipi Shoham and her husband Benny Shoham. Major shareholders in Green Onyx are Marius Nacht, Ruth Arnon and Aharon Fogel.
The company produces freshwater lentils, a superfood with unique properties, at a production center and indoor farm in south Tel Aviv, in the Panorama building.
The lentils are sold to Michelin star restaurants in Europe, and Green Onyx has signed agreements with local food companies to market its products to Israeli institutional and retail markets. The company is valued at NIS 240 million and it may go public and issue stocks on the exchange soon.
Why did Neta invest in these companies?
Tzvi Neta, chair and owner of Automotive, stated that he invested in these companies for different reasons.
Agrint will save unnecessary use of pesticides, which harm and endanger the environment. Green Onyx markets its products to three-star Michelin restaurants in France; their popularity will determine if the product has a place in exclusive environments.
In Israel, an agreement was signed with Tnuva to distribute the product in combination with special milk products.