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VERITAS VENTURE PARTNERS TO INVEST $20 MILLION IN SOUTH-EAST U.S. START UP COMPANIES

Date: Thursday, February 08, 2001
8 Febuary 2001 - (Herzliya, Israel)- Veritas Venture Partners, a leading early-stage venture capital fund with headquarters in Herzliya and an office in Atlanta, Georgia, plans to invest $20 million in start-up companies in the South-East U.S., announced Veritas Founding Partner, Yadin Kaufmann, at the “Why Atlanta” Conference held at the David InterContinental Hotel in Tel Aviv. The investment will be made by a third fund, in the amount of $100 million, for which Veritas is now raising capital.

Kaufmann advised Israeli hi-tech companies and VC managers to consider opening their US branches in Atlanta. According to Kaufmann, this presence aids companies in reaching their marketing objectives, developing business partnerships, and finding funding sources and exit opportunities for investments.

One of Veritas’s portfolio companies, ART, a company that develops handwriting and voice recognition technologies, mainly for the cellular phone industry, announced at the conference the opening of its U.S. headquarters in Atlanta. The opening marks the establishment of Veritas’ fifth portfolio company in Atlanta.

“Many Israeli companies have no reason to run to the West Coast of the U.S.,” stated Kaufmann. “The East Coast offers an obvious advantage in shortened travel time and overlapping business hours and the Southeast, with its fast-growing technology sector, is a great place to set up shop.”

The additional advantages Kaufmann listed included the fact that Atlanta is a centrally-located US transportation hub, has advanced technology infrastructures and a sizable technology workforce, as well as large business partners, such as CNN, UPS and BellSouth, and a sizable, supportive Jewish community. According to Kaufmann, “Atlanta offers a very convenient activity base for Israeli hi-tech companies. At the same time, Atlanta represents a good opportunity for VC Funds investing in the seed stage, because of the gap that still exists between the demand for capital by start-up companies and the supply of professional funding sources.”

Kaufmann expects the nearly fifty Israeli companies based in the South-East U.S. to offer many attractive investment opportunities, similar to those offered by Israeli entrepreneurs based in Silicon Valley, in which he, together with his partner Gideon Tolkowsky, invested when they jointly managed with Dan Tolkowsky and Fred Adler Israel’s first VC Fund, Athena, in the mid-1980s.

Among Veritas’ portfolio companies in Atlanta are Accord, Gilat Satellite Networks, ESC Medical, Rich FX and ART. Veritas, the first Israeli VC firm to establish a base in Atlanta, opened its offices there in February 2000.
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