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As a serial Israeli entrepreneur, and founder of Conduit - Israeli's first billion-dollar Internet company, I read this with rapt attention.
As many know, and as I have said often, I think it is simply wrong to start businesses with the intention of an early exit. Of course, life is unpredictable. Quick sales CAN make sense. But the short-term thinking that's behind "start-to-sell" is defeatist. If you start a business with the intention of a quick sale, you won't put the right structures and systems in place to build something enduring. So it becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.
I believe Israel is capable of building and scaling respected global companies; the infrastructure for that, though embryonic, is here. If we can do it in defense and pharmaceuticals, as we have, we can do it in the Internet space.
I agree that Israel is not developed as far as marketing goes. I believe that's cultural; a country in survival mode doesn't have much patience with what's seen as "cosmetics." In my view, marketing isn't a layer, but done right it's inseparable from product. Smart, insightful marketing makes product better. And better product makes marketing more successful. That's the virtuous cycle that leads to success.
Of course, I'm distressed by the soft VC numbers. In the same way that start-ups need to pivot when they face unexpected obstacles, so too does our VC industry. The talent and ambition are here, but we need to think bigger and act with more confidence. Small dreams yield small results.
2 years, 2 months ago on Investment in Israeli Startups Falls 20% This Year — Can We Finally Admit There Is a Problem?