Gov't to invest NIS 50m. to help companies impacted by COVID-19

The pandemic has heavily damaged business activity in Israel; this project initiated by the Economic Ministry will aim at strengthening the economy.

Israeli national flags flutter in front of an office tower at a business park housing high tech companies, at Ofer Park in Petah Tikva. (photo credit: RONEN ZVULUN / REUTERS)
Israeli national flags flutter in front of an office tower at a business park housing high tech companies, at Ofer Park in Petah Tikva.
(photo credit: RONEN ZVULUN / REUTERS)
About NIS 50 million will be invested in 17 projects that will help small businesses deal with the economic damage caused by the coronavirus crisis in Israel.
The Small and Medium Business Agency (SMBA) of the Economy and Industry Ministry will distribute grants up to NIS 15 million to businesses and ventures that will aim to improve the situation of small- and medium-sized businesses impacted by the coronavirus crisis.
The pandemic has heavily damaged business activity in Israel, and this project initiated by the ministry will aim at strengthening the economy on two levels: business activity of the grant applicant as well as small and medium-sized businesses.
The agency released this week the 17 winning new business ventures and initiatives that will benefit from these grants, selected among 90 proposals submitted after a call issued by the ministry. The winners will be split into two main tracks: the ventures that will help financially, and the ones that will help business-wise.
The common point of these initiatives is that they aspire to ensure their customers both traffic and revenue at a time when they could not operate, in order to help businesses bridge the cash flow gap created following their closure caused by the national lockdown.
"The spread of the coronavirus led to the fact that, even after the economic activity restrictions were reduced, many businesses returned to operate in a new reality they had not known before," according to SMBA director Ran Koiti.
"Addressing the great difficulty of businesses in obtaining credit is required as well as finding solutions to increase the customer base and maximizing profit potential," he said. "We trust the business sector to know how to offer original and innovative solutions."
The following three ventures won the financing venture track and will provide cash flow and financing solutions to small- and medium-sized business owners, with the help of the government.
BTB - P2P – a crowdfunding platform that provides loans to small businesses.
Oval  a company providing guarantees to businesses instead of bank guarantees. As part of the project, the businesses will not have to deposit the entire amount of the guarantee in the bank. 
Koret Funds – a company providing non-bank loans to businesses that have difficulty obtaining loans in the banking system.
Regarding the business venture track, assistance of approximately NIS 18 million was approved for ventures in the field of online commerce, logistics and shipments – a number of which focus on the periphery and smart marketing based on business information.
The selected business ventures will provide solutions for dealing with the effects of the coronavirus, whether through business development or through increasing sales. 
The winning businesses of the business venture track are the following:
AM Trustees of Entrepreneurship – a company helping to establish an online trading platform for businesses.
Eretz Ir – an online marketing, sales system and transportation service at a price adapted to small businesses in the Negev and the Galilee.
ERN Israel Ltd. – which is developing a means of payment for businesses through standing orders, in addition to payment by credit cards.
Isracard – focused on targeted marketing for businesses that address their relevant customer audience.
Easy Easy – focused on digital marketing and advertising and beyond sales through digital tools, based on Big Data.
The winning ventures will start providing their service within two months and their participation will be given to businesses in the coming year.