Event Report: OurCrowd Investor Summit & Visits to Israel and Dubai

OurCrowd Global Investor Summit, the largest startup event in the Middle East, took place in Jerusalem on February 12th-17th, 2023. The summit drew over 9,000 participants from 81 countries, including Gulf countries and North Africa. Saeko Seno and Tsutomu Nakaya from Shibuya City and Somee Kang from Shibuya’s Startup Welcome Service attended the event to promote Shibuya City’s international startup ecosystem.

Photo: Shibuya City

OurCrowd Global Investor Summit

Started in 2014, the OurCrowd Global Investor Summit brought together investors, venture capitalists, corporate partners, entrepreneurs, and journalists from across the world. The live-streamed event attracted thousands of participants and featured a variety of startups across a broad spectrum of industries. Attendees also had the opportunity to interact with and make valuable connections with other tech VCs and leaders from the startup community.

Photo: Shibuya City

Visits to Israel and Dubai

During their visit to Israel, our staff visited several organizations, including Gav-Yam Negev Tech Park, Israel Export Institute, Tel Aviv Global, JETRO Israel, and Israel Innovation Authority. The Israel Export Institute provides information on various sectors in Israel. It also supports Israeli companies in their global expansion by providing business matching services. We discussed future collaboration in detail, and the Israel Export Institute expressed interest in a partnership that would bring opportunities for Israeli companies to enter the Japanese market.

Tel Aviv Global works to attract tourism and finance to Israel’s capital city and enhance its status as an international business center focused on innovation. During our discussions, we introduced each other’s efforts, and they expressed their desire to connect with Japanese startups and investors.

During their visit to Dubai the representatives went to several organizations, including in5 Tech, AHOY, JETRO Dubai, AstroLabs, MAGNiTT, and HIVE jvc. Of particular interest was in5 Tech, an innovation facility located in a development-free zone, and it hosts more than 850 global tech companies, such as Amazon, Microsoft, IBM, and CISCO. After returning to Japan, we have continued to discuss future collaboration, including the organizing online events.

Photo: Shibuya City

A Message from Saeko Seno, Shibuya City

“I was able to firsthand experience the excitement of the startup ecosystem at the conference in Israel, where investors and startups gathered from around the world. It was a great opportunity to participate in the ‘OurCrowd Global Investor Summit’ and learn how startups have thrived in Israel, a country with a smaller population than Japan. In addition to attending the event, we exchanged opinions with many startup support organizations, investors, and entrepreneurs in Israel and Dubai. These discussions will be valuable in supporting startups in Shibuya in the future. We even met with Tel Aviv Global again at CityTech Tokyo, which was held two weeks after the event, and they participated in a side event in Shibuya. We look forward to strengthening our collaboration with both organizations while taking advantage of the unique characteristics of our respective countries.”

A Message from Tsutomu Nakaya, Shibuya City

“By coordinating meetings in advance with local residents, we were able to meet key individuals in the local startup ecosystem whom we would not normally have the opportunity to meet. This enabled us to make valuable connections throughout the entire trip. What stood out to me during this visit was that Israel and Dubai are making significant efforts to create a startup-friendly environment across their countries and regions. It’s no wonder that OurCrowd was filled with such enthusiasm. While there are certainly differences in maturity and population ratios between these countries and Japan (especially in Dubai, where only 2-3% of the population is over 60 years old), there are still practices that can be adopted and areas that can be improved upon. We should strive to implement good practices in Shibuya as much as possible. We will continue to coordinate with the national government, especially regarding taxation and other deregulation, which will be essential. We will focus on proposing a National Strategic Special Zone to the Cabinet Office.”

In addition to participating in the largest global startup event in the Middle East, we were able to enhance the international presence of the district’s startup ecosystem through visits to neighboring countries’ startup-related facilities and exchanges with support groups.

If you are a startup interested in the Middle East region or if you are in the Middle East region interested in the Shibuya Startup Support program, please don’t hesitate to contact us, and follow us on social media to keep up-to-date on upcoming events!

More information on Shibuya’s Startup Visa program: