New flights from France to Israel

EasyJet is launching a new, thrice-weekly direct flight route from Tel Aviv to Nantes, the sixth largest city in France, starting in April. Meanwhile Ryanair will be offering three flights a week between Tel Aviv and the southern French city of Marseille. The route will be taking off in October.

Mellanox exits for $6.9 billion

American technology giant Nvidia is to acquire Israeli chipmaker Mellanox in a deal worth $6.9 billion. Mellanox has offices in Yokne’am, Tel Aviv, Beersheba, Ra’anana and Tel Hai. Mellanox’s solutions accelerate some of the largest supercomputers in the world .

Chocolates with an Israeli twist

Israel’s Ika Cohen’s makes chocolates with flavors that include olive oil, Dead Sea salt, basil, and the Middle East herb zaatar. From her little Tel Aviv shop, she is now targeting the Japanese market. At the annual Salon du Chocolat fair in Tokyo she sold over $1,000 of chocolates per hour.

New entrepreneurs pitch in the South

The Entrepreneur Boot Camp for newcomers to Israel is run by Aliya organization Nefesh b’Nefesh. The latest six-week course in Southern Israel culminated in a Pitch Night. 15 contestants each had 90 seconds to present their ideas before a panel of five judges for prizes up to $3,300.

Travel tech companies merge

Israeli travel tech companies Fornova and HotelsBI are to merge.  Fornova will integrate HotelsBI’s hotel performance analytics software into its suite of products aimed at the hospitality industry.

Spotinst partners AWS

I reported previously on Israel’s Spotinst which helps businesses manage mission-critical systems across cloud providers. Spotinst has just announced its partnership with Amazon Web Services (AWS) which will offer Spotinst’s software through AWS’ Partner Network global startups program.

Attunity exits for $560 million

Israeli data integration specialist Attunity has been acquired by US based data analytics company Qlik for just over half a billion dollars. Attunity has over 2000 customers including half of the Fortune 100 companies. (I hadn’t even reported on Attunity before)

Israeli startups shine in cybersecurity market

The US is still top, but in 2018 Israel overtook China and the UK for venture capital invested in cybersecurity.

Six Israeli AI startups are most promising

CB Insights’ 2019 list of the 100 Most Innovative Artificial Intelligence Startups includes six Israeli companies previously featured in this newsletter – Habana Labs , BioCatch , Nexar , Taranis , Anodot and LawGeex

Six Israeli startups are most innovative

Fast Company magazine’s list of the world’s 50 most innovative companies for 2019 includes six Israeli companies previously featured in this newsletter - Vayyar Imaging , Innoviz , SpacePharma , ECOncrete , Sight Diagnostics and Waze .