Porsche is establishing an innovation office in Israel and has invested an unspecified eight-figure sum in the Magma and Grove venture capital funds with further finance for start-ups and funds planned.
“Israel is a key market for IT experts and engineers,” said Porsche Finance and IT board member, Lutz Meschke. It has more start-ups per capita than any other country in the world.
“This talent and technological know-how coupled with the expertise offered by our employees creates the breeding ground for future business models.”
The Magma Venture fund has been investing since 1999 and is currently focused on artificial intelligence and automotive. With investments in start-ups such as Waze, it is one of the major venture capital funds in Israel and has US$600m under management.
“Established in 2015, Grove Ventures is a venture capital company with a volume of US$100m. Its primary early stage investment areas are the Internet of Things (IoT), Cloud Technologies and Artificial Intelligence.
“Innovations have to come from somewhere,” added Meschke. “They need to be developed systematically, which is why we are starting to open up: It is both desirable and essential for us to welcome inspiration from other industries.
“That’s why we are working together with start-ups, but also establishing partnerships with other companies and the scientific community as well as investing in funds that are relevant to our sector.”