BDS is failing: A continuing series (Aug. 2015)

Here’s the latest installment of our monthly series detailing BDS fails. 

Economic BDS fails:

• ZIM ranks 1st in schedule reliability

For the second consecutive month, the Israeli shipping company ZIM ranks 1st in schedule reliability on the Asia-US East Coast trade. The July Global Liner Performance Report published by SeaIntel’s, analysing results for May-June 2015, once more positions ZIM’s at the top among global carriers, indicating ongoing improved performance.

• Ramat Gan based energy savings solution company has raised $22.5 million from Berkshire Hathaway and GE Ventures

Israeli energy savings solutions company eVolution Networks announced that it has raised $22.5 million from Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiary IES Holding, and GE Ventures. With the funding, eVolution Networks, which develops energy savings solutions for Mobile Network Operators (MNOs), plans to expand its worldwide presence and promote its solutions to new industries, such as data center energy management.

• Kibbutz pool-cleaning robot co Maytronics worth NIS 1b

[CEO Yuval] Beeri said, “the pool season in the northern hemisphere opened very positively and it is possible we will see a prolonged season due to the warm weather in Europe and the US.” (Maytronics exports its pool cleaners primarily to Europe and the USA and plans an expansion in Australia).

• Two Israeli Startups Sell For Quarter Billion Dollars Each In One Day

Every year, Israeli startups are sold for billions of dollars to global conglomerates, foreign investors and large Israeli companies, all of which are notable achievements for the young Startup Nation. But more than half a billion dollars worth of “exits” in one day? Earlier this week, this whimsical proposition became reality with the acquisition of two Israeli tech companies, Supersonic and Adallom, on the same day.

Political BDS fails

• Rototom Sunsplash apologizes publicly to Matisyahu

“Rototom Sunsplash apologizes publicly to Matisyahu for cancelling his concert and announces that it has invited him to perform next Saturday, Aug. 22, at the festival as initially planned,” the festival organizers said in a statement. The organisers said they had made a mistake under pressure from activists who call for a boycott and sanctions on Israel over its policies towards Palestinians.
The Spanish government condemned on the festival’s decision to cancel Matisyahu’s concert.

Cultural and Scientific BDS fails

• Israeli biogas digesters energise isolated Palestinian village

Palestinians living in an isolated village in the West Bank recently took delivery of a number of biogas generators to help meet their energy needs. These “anaerobic digesters” supply free, clean energy by gobbling up organic waste. Made by Israeli start-up HomeBioGas, the device turns food leftovers and manure into methane for cooking and lighting. For local residents who rely heavily on foreign donations, the portable reactors have helped them become much more self-sufficient. (View video)

• Israel’s Eye from Zion is restoring sight to hundreds of people in developing countries
Eye from Zion grew out of the vision of Israeli businessman Nati Marcus. Since its founding about three years ago, it has grown into a core group comprising five or six influential Israelis like Hessel. With their help, through missions undertaken by dozens of Israeli doctors who donate their time and expertise, Eye from Zion has restored sight to hundreds of people. With an industry standard tool called a Phaco machine, the Israeli eye doctors use sound waves to blast out a cataract, breaking it into pieces and then sucking it out. Most of the patients who arrive at the mobile clinic are nearly or completely blind in both eyes. Running a tight ship, with all donations made to the non-profit organization going directly to the operations, no one at Eye from Zion takes a salary says Hessel. “We don’t even have an administrator,” he adds. “Nobody is paid.”

• Dilemma For Israel Boycotters As Scientists Make HIV Breakthrough
Scientists in Israel have announced a breakthrough in HIV research, a development that will leave Israel boycotters with their latest ethical dilemma. The team from Ben-Gurion University of the Negev say their finding will result in a “revolutionary diagnosis and the key to the clinical solution that will prevent infection with HIV and will destroy the deadly virus.”

• WIRED Magazine’s 10 most promising Israeli Startups

One of the most intriguing companies on WIRED’s list is Consumer Physics. Last year, the company shattered all expectations with the launch of its cutting-edge pocket spectrometer named SCiO, a USB-sized device that can read and analyze the molecular composition of any physical object, like the freshness of your apple, or the water levels of your plant. SCiO raised $2.8 million in a few weeks on crowdfunding platform Kickstarter, well surpassing its initial goal of $200,000.

Kanye West planning to come to perform in Israel.

American rapper Kanye West is on the verge of finalizing a deal with Israeli producers to play one show in the Holy Land in October, most likely at Yarkon Park in Tel Aviv.

• Proof Of Earliest Agriculture Found In Israel, Dating Back 23,000 Years Ago

Researchers from Israel’s Tel Aviv, Bar-Ilan and Haifa Universities, with participation from Harvard, recently uncovered the first weed species at the site of a sedentary human camp on the shore of Israel’s Sea of Galilee, the location where prehistoric communities cultivated the first plants for human consumption. “While full-scale agriculture did not develop until much later, our study shows that trial cultivation began far earlier than previously believed, and gives us reason to rethink our ancestors’ capabilities,” TAU’s Prof. Marcelo Sternberg said in a statement. “Those early ancestors were more clever and skilled than we thought.”

• Israeli-American medical health startup personalizes health information

Medivizor – a company that uses patent-pending technology to sift through thousands of content articles and find the most essential information applicable and personalized for each person’s medical situation. The company says its software, crowdsourcing techniques and medical expertise can help information-seekers access easy-to-read, relevant and customized information in one place.
“Medivizor personalizes health information. Sounds like that’s been done before but to the best of our knowledge it hasn’t,” CEO Givoly tells ISRAEL21c. “We bring the cutting edge of science to people it matters most to, in a way they can understand and act upon.”
• Israeli IVF data presented in Europe to show impact on women’s marriage and career choices

The study, by economists Naomi Gershoni and Corinne Low, is to be presented at the annual congress of the European Economic Association in Mannheim which begins tomorrow. It looks at Israel, where in 1994 IVF was made free to all citizens, the most generous offer of its kind in the world. In Israel 4% of all babies are born using the technology, compared with around 1% in the United States. Using Israeli census data, they found that, following the policy change in 1994, women in Israel were more likely to marry later, complete college education and achieve post-college education. They noted: “The extended later-life fertility offered by this policy was responsible for a third of a year increase in first marriage age, a 3% increase in college completion and an almost 4% increase in graduate school completion for college graduates.”

The statistically significant findings raise important questions about the link between a woman’s career and her willingness to delay starting a family.

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