The Kinneret Innovation Center’s goal is to build a complete ecosystem and growth engine intended to support startups, high-tech and industry organizations in the Sea of Galilee region, as well as generate thousands of new opportunities for residents living in surrounding communities.
By focusing on areas of water, agriculture and sustainability, the center applies a strategy that leverages regional strengths and connections between academia and industry in Israel. as well as around the globe (https://www.kinneretinnovation.com/).
Despite the worldwide epidemic, this past year has been a year of growth in areas of industry and international relations and startup: We mentor 26 startups that have already raised approximately $43 million this year and are currently opening a third accelerator cycle – GO GLOBAL, a collaboration with a Brazilian fund that will lead entrepreneurs to build pilots and receive investments from Brazil. The KKL-Kinneret Accelerator has begun as well – a new accelerator for students and alumni from northern Israel working in collaboration with KKL-JNF, and integrating facilities for developing groundbreaking solutions in the fields of water, land and fire prevention (https://www.kinneretinnovation.com/accelerator).
Hi-tech: This year we opened KIC DEV, a unique collaboration between the Kinneret Academic College’s Software Engineering Department and the Innovation Center, aiming to create software development services geared towards regional industry, while also providing opportunities for quality employment and practical experience for exceptional students and academic staff.
School of Innovation: We thought our training courses would be affected by the pandemic; however, we adapted and created programs tailored to the challenges that arose: We created hybrid courses for organizational innovation, began offering courses about innovation and entrepreneurship in academia and programs for executives “How to establish a startup”.
To our delight, we trained 1,200 people this year, including youth, industry executives and a variety of production workers from various populations (https://www.kinneretinnovation.com/copy-of-school).
KIC hub: Over the past year, despite the pandemic, KIC has continued to operate and provide a home to dozens of entrepreneurs and organizations. We did not close our doors, and we did not have any infections! We would like to take this opportunity to announce that, at the beginning of October, two new high-tech companies moved in and began recruiting experienced developers and software professionals – You’re welcome to apply (https://www.kinneretinnovation.com/workspace).
Industry Innovation: Over the past year, we opened a new division that created a regional innovation forum for the 62 CEOs in the region (essentially, the financial leadership of the region) with the goal of connecting them to applied innovation, R&D with academia, and shifting perception about production and products. Six factories have already begun R&D at the college, and 14 began internal innovation and training processes. This is a great opportunity to invite you all to our annual hackathon in the field of water industry, in collaboration with the Water Community WaterEdge.IL (https://www.kinneretinnovation.com/industry).
Internationalization: We have had great success. Since January 2021, the Innovation Center has been representing and guiding the Japanese KUBOTA Corporation, the second largest agricultural machinery company in the world. The center is guiding KUBOTA in its search for groundbreaking technologies, investments in Israeli startups, and joint R&D in the field of agrotech.