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SPEAKERS 2022

KEYNOTE SPEAKER

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Dan Schulman is focused on democratizing and transforming financial services and e-commerce to improve the financial health of billions of people, families and businesses around the world. With extensive experience in payments and mobile technology, Dan is leading PayPal to reimagine how people move and manage money, and how merchants and consumers interact and transact. Under Dan’s leadership, PayPal has been named as one of the top companies on JUST Capital and Forbes’ JUST 100 list, featuring “companies doing right by America”. PayPal has also been recognized as a Fortune Change the World company for its work to tackle the biggest challenges facing society today.

PANELISTS

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Mukesh Jain

Product Lead, Personalization @Amazon

Leading a team of product managers, engineers, and applied scientists to build an authoritative knowledge graph for Amazon’s retail and digital products for the worldwide use cases. The product graph is being used in 30+ downstream applications across Search, Personalization, Amazon Music, and Alexa, increasing annualized profit by over $1.5B+, and supporting many industry-first experiences.

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Rinat Yogev

Partner @GM Ventures

Rinat joined as Partner in 2021 to lead the Israel office of GM Ventures. She leads investments in Israel, Europe, and the Gulf Countries. Rinat brings with her more than 15 years of investment and corporate finance experience and has driven $500M+ in venture capital, growth equity and private equity investments in Israel and the U.S. Most recently, Rinat was Investment Manager with the venture arm of Union Group, Israel’s exclusive distributer of Toyota, where she led both early and late stage deals. She was a board member or observer of several companies including mobility startups. Prior to this, she held senior investment roles at Allianz Capital Partners and Capital Dynamics in New York and at OurCrowd in Jerusalem. Rinat began her career as an investment banking analyst at Citi.

 

Rinat received her B.S. in Economics from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and her MBA from Columbia Business School.

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Matthew Kittay

Partner and Co-chair M&A Practice @Fox Rothschild

Matthew is nationally recognized as an innovative leader who guides businesses, investors and entrepreneurs to achieve the corporate financing and structures that drive their success.

 

National Co-Chair of Fox Rothschild's Mergers & Acquisitions Practice Group, Matthew has deep experience as outside general counsel, structuring mergers and acquisitions and securing private equity and venture capital for a wide range of companies, particularly in the technology, software, cannabis, manufacturing and health care sectors.

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Michael Sweet

Partner @Fox Rothschild

Chair of the firm's nationwide Financial Restructuring & Bankruptcy Department, Michael is an experienced litigator and bankruptcy attorney who achieves results for his clients by combining collaborative negotiating skills with a hard-hitting, take-no-prisoners approach to dispute resolution and litigation. In practice for more than 20 years, he has developed a reputation for efficiency and his ability to find creative solutions to seemingly intractable disputes.

Michael is among California’s most experienced Chapter 9 municipal bankruptcy attorneys. He has been quoted on the subject by national news outlets, including The New York Times, CNBC, The Wall Street Journal and Bloomberg News, among others. Michael currently serves as President of the San Francisco Bay Area Bankruptcy Forum, is on the Executive Board of the California Bankruptcy Forum and is a Member of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission

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Alex Baker

Partner @Relay Ventures

Alex is a Partner at Relay Ventures. Alex’s background in strategy and finance lend well to his roles overseeing Relay Ventures’ investments in a broad range of mobile platform and connected device companies. Prior to joining Relay Ventures, Alex worked as a management consultant with BearingPoint and PwC Consulting, specializing in retail banking, consumer and commercial credit card, and loyalty marketing solutions. Alex has managed large projects for some of the world’s most prominent financial institutions, including Visa, American Express, CIBC, Bank of America, BarclayCard and PayPal. Alex is a graduate from York University, Schulich School of Business and is a Kauffman Fellow.

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Hemdat Sagi

Chief of Strategy and Business Development @Konnect-Volkswagen Group Innovation

Hemdat joined Audi in September 2016 and worked as the brand’s Scouting and Innovation representative in Israel. Later on, In 2017, Hemdat was hired by the VW Group as a freelancer and established the first Innovation hub of the Volkswagen Group in Tel Aviv, named Konnect. Between 2012-2016 Hemdat served as a diplomat in Berlin, heading the Economic and Trade Mission at the Israeli Embassy in Germany. Hemdat and her local team supported hundreds of Israeli companies and startups in their export, sales, and marketing activities in the German market. Before that, Hemdat worked at the Israeli Ministry of Economy for 3.5 years in several roles and established the India- China fund, a 25 million euro government-budgeted program aimed to expand and diversify Israeli exports to Asia. Between the years 2005-2008, Hemdat worked as a parliamentary assistant to two members of Knesset, advising on governmental, legislation, political, and media issues. Hemdat is a lawyer by training and holds two degrees in Law (LL.B, LL.M) from Bar Ilan University. She has a diploma in Management from the Berlin-based business school ESMT and in 2020 completed a program on Negotiation by the Harvard NegotiationProgram.

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Gizem Yağız

Head of Venture Capital @MEXT Ventures

Gizem is the head of Venture Capital @MEXT Ventures , an Istanbul based CVC  investing in early-stage start-ups across the world with specific focus on mobility, logistics, new materials, IoT and energy.

Gizem holds 20 years of experience in mergers and acquisitions, venture capital investments and project finance across the Middle East, Turkey, UK, Eastern Europe and South-East Asia.  Prior to joining MEXT Ventures she was leading the investment efforts of the International Finance Corporation for infrastructure and venture capital in South-East Europe, Turkey and Central Asia.

 

Gizem holds an MSc from London School of Economics in Management of Information Systems, and a BSc in Economics (BSc) from Middle East Technical University, Turkey.

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Hans-Peter Rohner

@Bluewin

Hans-Peter Rohner, born 1953, swiss-citizen, mgmt-education by IMD, spent my entire business life in media, communication, advertising in Switzerland and abroad. From 2002 to 2012 CEO of Publigroupe (worldwide-active organization for advertising-and-media-service, 3000 employees), from 2009 to 2014 Chairman of Publigroupe. In parallel various board seats in large media corporations in Switzerland, India, Hong Kong and other countries. First Internet investment in 1995, since then created/supported/initiated more than 30 startups. Today private investors, mainly in the field of Digital Signage, DigitalMedia, Data-Analytics, VR-applications

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Lital Kiperman Vaknin

Strategic Partnerships @Peres Center for Peace and Innovation

Lital is a business development professional with 15
years of international experience in investments,
M&A and strategic partnership management in the hi-tech industry. Today Lital is Head of Innovation and Strategic Partnerships at the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation. In this capacity, Lital is responsible for leading the Center’s
relationships with the international business community and promoting activities within the Israeli ecosystem in support of the Center’s core values – Innovation for Tikun Olam, Diversity and Inclusion. Before joining the Peres Center, Lital was part of the Corporate Development team at Amdocs, and prior to that, she was part of a team that established the international investment arm of the Mail.ru group, one of Russia’s largest
Internet companies. Lital holds an MBA from the College of Management.

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Sophia Alj

Co-founder and COO @Chari.co

Sophia is the co-founder and COO of Chari.co, a B2B e-commerce platform for traditional proximity stores like mom and pop shops. Chari allows these shops to order any consumer goods they need and get delivered for free on the next day while benefiting from payment facilities.   Before launching Chari in January 2020, Sophia worked for 4 years as a strategy consultant for McKinsey & Company. She worked for the public and private sectors across Africa with a specialization in digital transformations.   Sophia graduated in 2013 from cGill University with a Bachelor in Civil Engineering. She also holds a Masters Degree from ESCP Europe ("Grande Ecole" Program).

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Ilan Benhaim

Co-founder and partner @Veepee

Born in 1976 in Paris, Ilan Benhaïm is an entrepreneur and business angel of Moroccan, Austrian and French descent. He is a graduate of the NEOMA Business School (formerly ESC Rouen).
Ilan Benhaïm is the co-founder and partner of Veepee (formerly vente-privee.com), and currently sits on the Board of directors of this company, a
pioneer in online event-based sales.
Since 2019, Ilan Benhaïm is also the founder of IB Participations S.A., an investment holding company specialized in financing startups worldwide.

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Jean-Luc Bazin

Technology Scouting & Networking @ Swatch Group (Switzerland) 

TBA

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Orr Hameiri

Global Tech Innovation Director @P&G

Part of P&G Global Innovation Team, Orr is leading P&G innovation activities as well as P&G Ventures activities in Israel. His key goal is to create a sustainable competitive advantage for P&G by partnering with top entrepreneurs, VCs and researchers, in order to incorporate their disruptive technologies within P&G Global Business Units. His broad span of interest areas includes Industry 4.0, Cybersecurity, Sustainability, Data & Analytics, Immersive Tech and many more.

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Yoni Blau

Venture Partner @Skywell Ventures

Previously, Head of Innovation for Deloitte Israel,Director of Digital Technologies Scouting for Unilever and Managing Director at “LabIX Ventures” Flex’s corporate venture arm. Yoni is also the co-founder of PMatX Innovation Lab backed by Merck and Flex and the Israel Innovation Authority to support startups in the field of material science for the electronics space.

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Naomi Maryles

Director of Israel BD @DLA Piper

Naomi Maryles is the Director of Israel Business Development. She is responsible for facilitating new client generation through intelligence gathering and networking, and proactively generating new business opportunities for DLA Piper colleagues around the world.

Naomi brings a unique perspective to business development, as she began her career as an attorney at a number of NY-based law firms focusing on corporate and securities work before joining DLA Piper in a business development role. She meets regularly with clients/prospective clients, plans and hosts events, assists attorneys with obtaining and refining proposals and attends conferences and events to support brand enhancement in the region. Naomi has also launched DLA Piper's Israel WIN series and Israel Women's Leadership series.

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Liron Azrielant

Managing Partner @Meron Capital

Investor in early stage startups developing innovative technology. Sloan MBA and MIT Master in Computer Science graduate. Experienced in M&A advisory, early stage seed investments, management consulting, business analytics and working in international environments.

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Georgi Mitrovsky

Investment Manager @Neo Ventures

As an Investment Manager at Neo Ventures I took my experience from consulting as a Big4 finance professional into early-stage investing with a focus on the entrepreneur as a disruptor. As a distinguished IE Business School graduate, the built entrepreneurial mentality helps our fund support bold innovators in up-and-coming industries such as SpaceTech, HealthTech and Security with mindfulness of the necessary strategic considerations that should turn a product into a gold standard in the respective field. Additionally, as a former professional athlete and currently Game Director for the Bulgarian National Basketball Team, I have seen how technology-driven fan engagement efforts have brought the recent recognition of sports as a massive business opportunity demonstrated by growing interest of finance professionals into the field, which in hand turned sports to not just competition but to a massive industry of its own.

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Dr. Michal Vakrat Wolkin

Partner @GFT Ventures

Dr. Michal Vakrat Wolkin is a Partner at GFT Ventures. She brings over 15 years of experience in venture capital, business development, and corporate R&D with multinational corporations and startups. Prior to joining GFT, Michal served as Managing Director of Lear Innovation Ventures (LIV) in Israel where she focused on AI, autonomous driving, smart mobility, industry 4.0, and cyber security. Prior to LIV, Michal was 3M's Head of R&D in Israel focusing on Digital Transformation and IOT investments and partnerships, and she was also part of the founding team of electric vehicle infrastructure startup Better Place. Beginning in 2000, Michal was a member of the research staff at PARC, where she also completed her postdoc.

Michal graduated with a PhD in Applied Physics and Materials Science from the University of Rochester, NY, and holds an undergraduate degree from the Technion, Israel. She currently sits on the Board of Directors of Tower Semiconductor (NASDAQ: TSEM) as well as the Hebrew University Nano Tech Fund. Michal is lecturer at IDC entrepreneurship department, holds 10 patents and well cited publications. 

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Conor Bruton

Open Innovation Manager at British American Tobacco 

Open Innovation Manager at British American Tobacco (BAT) focused on the search and validation of breakthrough consumer electronic device technologies. As BAT continues its journey to transform from manufacturing a single agricultural product to a leading technology company, new innovations that have the potential to excel in both its current and future product portfolio are key to the company's success. At BAT Connor had multiple roles ranging from downstream product development to upstream innovation and more recently open innovation. Most recently, Connor was accountable for BAT’s CVC investment in China, overlooking several technology searches and identification of investment opportunities that have opened a portfolio of newly established strategic partners for the company to access. BAT has created a broad range of global brands under the Next Generation product portfolio and remains committed to maintaining the strength of these brands whilst building a strong, innovative, and sustainable pipeline for its future.

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Mor Eini

Strategic Partnerships and Growth @APX

Mor is the Strategic Partnerships and Growth at APX, the Berlin-based very-early-stage VC backed by Axel Springer and Porsche.

A natural matchmaker, she manages APX’s strategic partnerships in the ecosystem and supports APX B2B portfolio companies with their sales and business development. Mor connects innovation-seeking companies with one of APX’s market-leading portfolio companies. As a founder of one of the biggest VCs for female founders in DACH, Mor supports diversity at APX and beyond.

With former dreams of becoming an ambassador, Mor studied International Relations and Middle East and Islamic Studies in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. However, her career led her down a different path: She helped German start-ups scale up at the EU project GERMANTECH, played a role in the mobility and start-up boom in Israel at the smart mobility community hub EcoMotion, and scouted German start-ups to Israel at the Israeli operation of hub:raum by Deutsche Telekom.

Before fostering a community for Germany-based Israelis in tech, Mor served as a captain in the Israeli Defense Forces, managing the HR affairs for more than 800 soldiers and commanders.

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Amber Wigmore Alvarez

Associate Professor @IE Business University

Considered one of the foremost references in Employability and the Future of Work on a
global scale, Dr. Amber Wigmore Álvarez is Chief Talent Officer of Highered, executing digital
leadership with a focus on talent, continuously striving to increase talent engagement on the
Highered platform by offering tools such as the most sophisticated assessments on the market,
relevant content and connections with leading global employers and opportunities, while
monitoring talent analytics to align with the Company’s strategy in order to reach business
objectives and generate value. She leads Highered Upskill globally, a Highered EFMD and
Coursera initiative, which is the largest employability upskilling initiative ever seen, offering a unique curated selection of courses provided by Coursera’s corporate content providers,
including Google, Facebook, Amazon, BCG and IBM, among many others. In her former role, as Chief Innovation Officer (CIO), Amber spearheaded the network development, while taking the role as global thought leader in student placement, introducing Highered to recruiters, providing schools and organizations with insight for data driven decisions.

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Aiden Connolly

Head of Innovation & Special Projects

Toyota & Lexus IRE

In partnership with Toyota Japan, Toyota Europe and Toyota Connected, Aiden has spent the last 6 years creating and testing the business architecture for future mobility solutions and connected vehicles. In 2016, he created and incubated the first ever Toyota Car Share service (Yuko/Kinto) which last year became the first Toyota Mobility service globally to reach profit. The blueprint created in Dublin in now being used on in over 10 Toyota markets on 3 continents. Bringing MVPs to commercial success has allowed Aiden and his team to stress-testing thinking, technology & business models with real customers and members.

 

Aiden has worked for Toyota on 2 separate occasions previously. As Head of Marketing for Lexus Ireland and as a dealer principal for Lexus in South Africa. Aiden spent at total of 8 years in Africa where most of his time was spent as Managing Director of Mullen Lowe, the most awarded South African Advertising agency during that period. His agency won 2 Cannes Lions and numerous other advertising awards under his leadership.

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Jaewon Peter Chun

Founder & CEO @ XnTREE

Mr. Jaewon Peter Chun is President of World Smart Cities Forum (WSCF - https://worldsmartcities.org/), a British non-profit organization and CEO of XnTREE, a tech accelerator based in New York and London. Mr. Chun has accumulated expertise in designing smart city fostering the global tech startups. He participated in ‘Cognicity’ Smart City Challenge programme in Canary Wharf, London in 2014-2016, and designed a $4 billion South Korean Smart City national pilot project in 2018 as a Master Planner.  In 2020, Mr. Chun signed a Mandate Agreement with the Ukrainian and Vietnamese governments to develop master plans for smart city projects in Lviv and Hanoi. He is also advising many municipalities to regenerate the cities in Europe and the North America.  Meanwhile, XnTREE, a tech accelerator, has fostered a number of tech startups at Level39 in London where the smart city solution and technology is validated through XnTREE Tech Sandbox. (http://www.xntree.co/)

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Abdelouahed Rahal

Director General for Trade, Ministry of 

Industry and Trade, Kingdom of Morocco

Abdelouahed Rahal holds a chemistry doctorate from Ibn Tofail university, he is also an alumnus of the Higher Institute of Commerce and Business Administration of Casablanca.

He joined the Ministry of Industry and Trade of Morocco in 2003 and has contributed to the implementation of many projects in the automotive and aeronautics sector, particularly in the framework of the industrial acceleration plan (2014-2020).

Other than that, he actively participated in the development of industrial zones and in the setting up of multinationals such as Renault, Stellantis (ex PSA), Bombardier and international suppliers.

Since 2019, he has held the position of General Director of Trade, through which he oversees the promotion of Morocco at the global level through the development of exports/investment, the enrichment of trade as well as the improvement of the national infrastructure.

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Yann Assor

Yann Assor – Founder & Managing Partner @BV CAPITAL AFRICA

Yann Assor is the founder and Managing Partner of the advisory firm BV CAPITAL AFRICA specialized
in M&A operations and strategic partnerships in Morocco and West Africa. Yann is also Vice
President of the Moroccan-Israeli Business Council of the CGEM (Confederation of Moroccan
Employers)

Yann previously held the position of Partner - Head of Transactions at PwC in charge of PwC's
Transactions activities in Morocco and West Africa.

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Philip Velmer

Head of Business Unit @NRW Global Business

Philip Velmer studied Management & Economics at the Ruhr-University in Bochum and obtained hismaster’s degree in European Studies at the Jagiellonian University in Krakow. He has been working for the business promotion agency of the German federal state of North RhineWestphalia (NRW) since 2018. Since then, he gained profound experience in planning and supportingoutgoing activities of German small and medium sized enterprises on federal state level. Further, heis supporting foreign companies and investors in their project decisions by providing access to rightnetwork and business partners in NRW. Since mid-2021 he is Head of Business Unit CEE and Israel.

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Matan Hazanov

Vice President @Verstra Ventures

Before joining Verstra Ventures, Matan spent 6 years building and helping startups as an entrepreneur, advisor, and investor. In his 4 years at Terracap Ventures, Matan was a key player in many transactions in the software, cleantech and agtech industries in North America and Israel. In his role, Matan advised portfolio companies on strategy, raising capital and building a sustainable competitive advantage. Matan has an International BBA from the Schulich School of Business.

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Jeremy Lustman

Partner @DLA Piper

Jeremy Lustman helps lead the firm’s global Israel Country Group.

Jeremy spends much of his time physically on the ground in Israel, where he has developed a strong international network of Israeli companies, investors, entrepreneurs, bankers, accountants and local lawyers. He currently coordinates and helps lead DLA Piper's development efforts and initiatives cultivating international business emanating from Israel, serves as a liaison for Israeli clients seeking legal guidance in non-Israeli jurisdictions where DLA Piper has a presence, and provides guidance to non-Israeli clients evaluating business relationships and strategic partners within Israel.

Jeremy directly represents and oversees a significant number of key Israeli relationships that have touched upon more than 35 different international jurisdictions and more than 40 DLA Piper global offices. These clients cover virtually all sectors of the Israeli economy, including leading venture capital and private equity funds, institutional real estate investors and multiple companies in the biotech, high tech (software, Internet and semiconductors), telecommunications, industrial, food/beverage, agro-tech, defense, homeland security and gaming sectors.

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Patricia Lahy Engel

Program manager @Intuit for Startups

Patricia runs Intuit for Startups in Israel. Intuit is a global technology platform serving millions of customers worldwide with TurboTax, QuickBooks, Mint, Credit Karma and Mailchimp. In her role Patricia develops programs to create a ground of engagement between Intuit and the dynamic startup scene in Israel with the purpose of helping customers and communities overcome their mostimportant financial challenges. Before joining Intuit, Patricia lead the Societal Challenges Division of Israel Innovation Authority which focused on harnessing technological innovation to solving substantial problems in society and the public sector, and on developing solutions for the lack of skilled workers in the high-tech industry by increasing the number and diversity of employees in this sector. Before joining the public sector, Patricia ran and developed  TheHive start-up accelerators  and led the entrepreneurship programs of Gvahim, a non-profit organization that provides highly-skilled new immigrants and returning citizens with the tools to build asuccessful career in Israel. Previously, Patricia opened and ran the activities of The Walt Disney Company in Israel  and successfully developed its activity across different lines of business.

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Simon Weintraub

Partner @Yigal Arnon & Co

Simon is a senior partner in the High Tech department at Yigal Arnon & Co., one of Israel's leading law firms in the field of tech and finance. Simon regularly represents venture capital funds, global banks, private equity funds and emerging growth companies in the technology space as well as life sciences.  

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Dana Eli-Lorch

Founding Partner @Company Capital

Dana is a General Partner and Co-Founder of Company Capital, an early-stage venture capital fund focused on fintech, commerce and enabling infrastructure. She leads the firm’s investments in fintech infrastructure and enterprise software.

Previously, she served as a Managing Director at Amex Ventures, where she led the Enterprise Capabilities investment vertical globally and headed Amex Ventures activity in EMEA. Dana invested in and was involved in the boards of BioCatch, DataGrail, EverC, Menlo Security, Mirato, Signifyd, TrueAccord, Trulioo, and Voca.ai (acq. by Snap). Dana had also led investments is Codat, Cyrus, Melio, Simplee (acq. by Flywire), and Truework.

Dana joined American Express in 2012 and held innovation and business development roles in New York, prior to joining Amex Ventures in Palo Alto in 2015. Before that, Dana was an Associate at TASC Consulting & Capital, Israel's largest management consulting firm.

Dana also spent seven years as an officer in Israel's Elite Technological Intelligence Unit (8200). Dana holds a BA in Economics and Management from Tel Aviv University and an MBA from Columbia Business School

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Joern Watzke

Senior Director Global B2B Sales @Garmin

Joern Watzke lead Garmin Health BD worldwide since April 2014. Garmin Health serve
solutions for corporate wellness and insurances for dynamic underwriting, disease risk
assessment, patient monitoring and reward programs.
Joern Watzke has 25 years of experience in the consumer electronic industry. After his
master in information technology he started his career at Siemens. He worked there for
eleven years in several leading positions.
In addition to Joern’s good business development and engineering background he has
strengths and good experiences in product strategy and definition.

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Brad McManus

Sr. Investment Director @Applied Ventures

As a capital markets professional for his entire career, Brad has led strategic venture investments for leading global technology corporations for the past twenty years. His venture capital investments have spanned multiple industries, including fixed and mobile communications, networking, semiconductors, enterprise software, mixed reality, batteries, displays and others. Before joining the Applied Ventures team, Brad was with the venture investment and strategic partnering units of Motorola Solutions Venture Capital and Panasonic Ventures. His experience includes investments across the entire range of stages of startups, from seed to growth stage. Brad has served as an high value add advisor and board observer for many companies during his tenure in venture investing.

Some of Brad’s notable investments in his corporate VC role include Mojo Vision, Tesla, Syntiant, RapidSOS, NokNok Labs. Prior to transitioning into venture capital over twenty five years ago, Brad was an institutional public equity fund manager where he started his career in aggressive growth stocks and trust fund portfolio management.

Brad has an MBA and BS (Finance and Economics) from Northern Illinois University and has served on multiple strategic venture investment boards and nonprofit organizations during his career. 

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Amir Peled

Senior Vice President, Head of OTT, DATA, and Peering Services at Swisscom AG

Since May 2018 Amir has been leading the digital partnerships and OTT team at Swisscom. Mainly
focusing on digital and media services, the OTT team at Swisscom is a small, senior, team of Digital
professionals focusing on the digital intersection between Telco`s and the global OTT providers. In
addition, he is developing new wholesale models around OTT content distribution. Finally, Amir leads
the peering and transit and (cloud edge) caching businesses at Swisscom, in order to enable the
perfect infrastructure to deliver best in class digital services and online experiences.
Prior to that Amir spent several years in the field of IOT analytics and solutions with a company
called AGT, where he led the global strategic alliances and partnerships team. He led a large alliance with Cisco here for IOT solutions in the areas of smart cities and transportation, and several industrial IOT solutions and initiatives.
Before that, Amir worked at Microsoft Corp. from Switzerland where he led EMEA activities with the
open solutions group, focusing on strategic alliances and partnerships with leading (enterprise) open source companies. Amir has an MBA from IMD in Lausanne, Switzerland, is married, has 3 children and lives in Zurich, Switzerland.

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Meriem Zairi

Senior Managing Director, SEAF Morocco Growth Fund

Meriem has over 20 years experience in investment activities in Europe and Africa and is currently focusing on emerging markets as Fund Manager, Senior Managing Director in charge of MENA region and innovation focused initiatives. Meriem successfully raised and closed Seaf Morocco Growth Fund, led the second closing of the Fund and actively deploying funds (6 deals closed to date). Meriem is also a Global Investment Committee member. Prior has experience as an entrepreneur with two agritech startups in Morocco.  Meriem graduated from ESSEC Business School in Paris with an MSc in Management and a major in Finance.

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Orly Sorokin

IBM Alpha Zone Accelerator Manager

Orly Sorokin manages the IBM Alpha Zone Accelerator in Israel. The program targets post seed B2B startups interested in partnering with IBM, its partners and customers. For the past 5 years, Orly had a privilege to work with the most innovative startups, help them in forming their go-to-market, sales and channel strategies. In addition, some of the leading global organizations have joined IBM Alpha Zone to scout together for the most promising companies for exploring potential pilots and investments. Prior to that, Orly led business development and sales in international markets in both startups and enterprises.