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2018-02-23 digital edition
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The Jewish Press of Tampa and the Jewish Press of Pinellas County are Independently- owned biweekly Jewish community newspapers published in cooperation with and supported by the Tampa JCC & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Pinellas & Pasco Counties, respectively. Copyright © 2009-2018 The Jewish Press Group of Tampa Bay, Inc., All Rights Reserved. 


February 23, 2018  RSS feed
Front Page

Text: T T T

Business accelerator picks 4 new Israeli companies to spread wings here

On a tour of the University of Tampa, (L-R) Andrew Rella, CEO of ECOncrete US; Moran Zipper, FIBA intern; Roy Heller, sales director at Nucleon; and Amit Safir, sales director at UC-Care On a tour of the University of Tampa, (L-R) Andrew Rella, CEO of ECOncrete US; Moran Zipper, FIBA intern; Roy Heller, sales director at Nucleon; and Amit Safir, sales director at UC-Care Following a successful inaugural year when the Florida-Israel Business Accelerator (FIBA) brought eight companies from Israel to Tampa to meet potential investors and customers, FIBA has selected four new Israeli companies to help get established here.

The new companies are in the field of digital health, ecologically conscious construction, cyber security, and the medical device industry.

FIBA, which has office in the Bryan Glazer Family JCC in Tampa, is becoming a leader in ushering innovative Israeli companies into the U.S. market, with many of the first group of eight companies finding local investors and some planning to open offices in the Tampa Bay area.

All four of the Israeli companies are innovators in their industries. With goals of improving patient care, protecting coastlines while preserving marine life and securing companies’ systems and data, FIBA officials say they believe these companies will lead the way with their groundbreaking technologies.

On Feb. 12, the companies brought key management representatives to Tampa for four weeks. The entrepreneurs will study the U.S. market, identify business opportunities, receive coaching on sales and marketing, and immerse themselves in the Tampa community and business environment. They will return in June for two weeks to prepare for and present at FIBA’s second annual Innovation Fusion event.

The next group of Israeli companies will be chosen in March.

Meanwhile, FIBA celebrated the recent success of two of the eight companies that participated in 2017.

Last month, WeissBeerger, a beverage consumption analytics company, was acquired by Anheuser-Busch InBev SA/NV, the world’s largest beer brewer, for a reported $80 million. WeissBeerger developed a unique mixture of hardware, software, and data analysis for the beverage industry. With the acquisition, WeissBeerger is set to become Anheuser-Busch InBev’s research and development center in Israel.

“The sale of Weissbeerger to InBev illustrates the caliber of companies that FIBA is attracting to its program and the possibility for investment opportunities and establishing a Florida presence for these exciting companies,” said Rachel Marks Feinman, executive director of FIBA.

In December, StemRad, an Israeli company that makes a personal radiation shield to protect troops, first responders, and nuclear power plant workers, landed a $6 million investment led by Tampa’s investor Jeff Vinik.

Other companies from FIBA’s 2017 cohort continue to gain traction in the Tampa Bay market, and FIBA anticipates additional successes for these companies.

FIBA negotiates individual agreements with each of the companies in the program. There are some companies in which the JCC and Federation or its affiliates has a small equity stake.

The new companies are:


This company develops a real-time communication and care management platform for caregivers, nurses and professional staff in order to improve care at skilled nursing facilities. The platform is simple, user-friendly, customizable and comprehensive. It enables standardized reporting and a continuum of care.

“We are excited to bring BetterCare to Tampa and expose them to the Florida market, where skilled nursing facilities are abundant and the BetterCare product can significantly improve patient care. We were introduced to BetterCare through our partnership with CDI Negev, an established Israeli accelerator program in partnership with Ben-Gurion University in Beer-Sheva,” said Rachel Marks Feinman, executive director of FIBA.

The company’s web address is


This company provides science-based construction solutions that are designed to decrease the ecological footprint of concrete structures like ports, breakwaters and piers, while improving their structural performance. They have developed a revolutionary approach to eco-engineering of coastal and marine infrastructure, providing cost-effective concrete solutions for the ever-growing global climate-change threats such as sea-level rise and superstorms.

CEO Shirmrit Perkol-Finkel, says “ECOncrete is excited to work with FIBA on business development, networking, and market penetration in Florida.”

The company web address is


This company’s focus is on identifying and analyzing cyber threats. With those threats growing every day and cyber attacks becoming more common and more powerful, Nucleon hopes its innovative technology – with tools built to work autonomously on the Internet, 24/7 – will be the solution to Internet security.

“With so much activity in the cyber security space these days, we continue to pursue companies that bring unique solutions to the cyber threat that applies to all industries. We selected Nucleon because they have shown some early traction and are exploring Florida as their base for their U.S. operation,” Feinman said.

The company web address is


This company develops, manufactures, and sells two products aimed at improved detection and treatment of prostate cancer. UC-Care created the Navigo System, a fusion MRI navigation system for prostate biopsies, and the SmartBx System, a prostate biopsy preserving download device. With prostate cancer being the most common cancer in men in the U.S. after skin cancer, the unique, patented and FDA-approved systems by UC-Care improve visibility and accuracy and reduce risk. UC-Care CEO Shaike Schatzberger says, “We hope for close cooperation with the FIBA team and the Tampa community and we are very happy to start the program.”

The company web address is

About FIBA

The Florida-Israel Business Accelerator is a Florida-based business development and community engagement project designed to establish and grow successful Israeli tech ventures in the Tampa Bay area. FIBA identifies Israeli technologies that can solve business problems and fill challenge-gaps for Florida corporations and provides a soft landing for companies that are ready to enter the U.S. market. FIBA offers entrepreneurs strategic alignment with corporate partners, consults on product localization and expansion and provides guidance on developing go-to-market strategies. FIBA also facilitates introductions to prospective customers, strategic partners and investors and assists with sales and development of customer leads. FIBA encourages the Israeli companies to establish operations in the Tampa Bay area. For more information, go to

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