At age 71, former IDF chief Ya'alon joins the business world

Former IDF chief of staff Moshe Ya’alon will head Synaptech, a new Israeli-owned venture capital fund to be established in the United Arab Emirates.

 Former IDF chief of staff and politician Moshe (Boogie) Ya’alon  (photo credit: Yoram Gutman)
Former IDF chief of staff and politician Moshe (Boogie) Ya’alon
(photo credit: Yoram Gutman)

Former IDF chief of staff and politician Moshe (“Boogie”) Ya’alon is entering the private sector. Ya’alon will head Synaptech, a new Israeli-owned venture capital fund to be established in the United Arab Emirates.

Founded by the Avnon Group and strategic partners from the Gulf region, Synaptech will invest in about 20 young start-ups with the aim of bringing the spirit of the Israeli Start-Up Nation to the Emirates and realizing the business potential in the defense industry between the two sides.

The fund focuses on early-stage start-ups that provide innovative technologies in various fields such as smart cities, public safety, cyber security, fintech and insurance technologies, with the ability to quickly transform from theory to proven technology.

Along with the fund, the Avnon Group and its partners will establish an innovation center to help companies from the Gulf countries cooperate on the development of products in Israeli start-up companies.

Ya’alon, 71, served more than 30 years in the IDF, including as chief of staff from 2002 to 2005. He then worked with several think tanks before joining the Likud Party in 2008. He has served as deputy prime minister, defense minister, strategic affairs minister and as a member of the security cabinet.

Former Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon speaks at the Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, February 14, 2016 (credit: REUTERS)Former Israeli Defence Minister Moshe Yaalon speaks at the Munich Security Conference in Munich, Germany, February 14, 2016 (credit: REUTERS)

“The Avraham agreements have opened the door to Israel and the United Arab Emirates for strategic cooperation that will affect the two countries for many years to come,” Ya’alon said. “As part of the collaboration we will create at Synaptech, we will bring the spirit of the Start-Up Nation and the most advanced technologies we have to offer to the Gulf states. At the UAE Innovation Center, we will allow Israeli technology companies to recruit strategic investors and develop their products according to market demands, in collaboration with their future customers in the Gulf. We believe that in a short time, Synaptech will become a symbol of peace and economic cooperation between Israel and the United Arab Emirates.”