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MizMaa Newsletter - Q2/2020

Dear Friends,

The unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic tests one’s resolve and resilience to no end. We are proud that the Israeli spirit continues to come out on top in its adaptability and innovation. We will see many lasting changes in technological trends which will stay with us for years to come. 

Interestingly, the MizMaa theses are even more relevant now than before; our portfolio companies are providing even more pressing solutions to the needs of a new normalcy. And the way MizMaa has worked, spanning three different geographies since 2016, was perhaps an earlier version of today’s WFH/remote working before there was a proper name to it.

The last few months have been an incredibly busy period for us. A few highlights to share: We closed our third exit: Vayavision, a top-notch sensor-fusion company, which was sold to Leddartech, an integrated LIDAR company in Canada.

We continued actively sourcing companies and made investments in 2 new exciting companies, one in the field of Data Analytics and the other in Cybersecurity (still in stealth mode). Our companies continue to raise substantial rounds such as the US$10M round raised by Anagog. Bond is an innovative last-mile company capitalizing on the dramatic surge in demand for last-mile delivery in New York with further expansion planned in the US. Ment.io is providing the perfect discussion tool for remote learning and the leading collaborative tool for remote working. Allegro leads the industry in open source with greater adoption of agile development and DevOps methods which are now major trends. 

We have never stopped for a moment believing that innovation will pause in Israel and have recently sponsored an early-stage startup competition. During these most challenging times, it is important for us to support the tech ecosystem in Israel. We reviewed 350 applications and arranged a pitch day for the finalists.

We hope you enjoy reading our newsletter. We wish to stay in close touch and look to continue to capitalize on the tailwinds of new normalcy resulting from COVID-19. We hope all of you stay vigilant and safe.

Latest Portfolio Updates
Israeli autonomous vehicle startup VayaVision acquired by Canada’s LeddarTech

Canadian company LeddarTech announced it has acquired MizMaa's portfolio company VayaVision. 

VayaVision,  was founded in 2016 by Nehmadi Youval and Ronny Cohen and raised $8m in Seed funding led by MizMaa Ventures.

“The acquisition of VayaVision adds a vital building block by combining its sensor fusion perception technology with LeddarTech’s proven LeddarEngine platform,” Charles Boulanger, CEO of LeddarTech, said in a statement.

Anagog raises $10M in Series C funding round

Anagog, the pioneer of on-device artificial intelligence solutions, has raised an initial $10M in Series-C funding. The round was co-led by IN Venture, Israel’s corporate venture capital arm of Sumitomo Corporation, part of Sumitomo Corporation Global Venture Group, as well as existing investor and VC firm, MizMaa, and is joined by Continental, the international automotive supplier, tire manufacturer, and industry partner.

Aurora Labs voted top 10 companies Amazon could buy according to Business Insider

Maribel Lopez, founder and principal analyst of Lopez Research, says that AWS could acquire companies in AI security, as well as companies that fix bugs in AI software. Aurora Labs is one such example, she says.

Although Aurora Labs is targeted at vehicle manufacturers, she says that if AWS were to acquire it, its technology would not just be used for cars. Instead, she says it could be "expanded as a platform play," meaning that AWS could use its AI technology for other parts of its business — its own growing logistics robot fleet, for example.

Allegro AI Becomes NVIDIA DGX-Ready Software Program Partner

Organizations that want to leverage AI to improve products and services often struggle to implement an advanced infrastructure that supports the unique and challenging demands of machine learning and deep learning.

The combination of the Allegro AI end-to-end ML/DL lifecycle management solution and NVIDIA DGXTM systems, offers an enterprise-grade solution for the development and deployment of AI workloads. Allegro AI’s ML-Ops easy-to-use orchestration and scheduling capabilities enable customers to get the most out of their DGX systems, thereby increasing both team productivity and infrastructure utilization.

Ment partners with HBS, Wharton, Berkley and other leading universities

Ment generates a thoughtful discussion, valuable analytics, and seamless, objective assessment based on participation and contribution to the discussion.
The platform has tens of thousands of users all around the world, e.g South Korea, Gulf states, Latin America, and more. From second grade (7 years old...) to executive MBAs.
Ment is now integrated into Canvas and other LMS systems (and into Microsoft Teams) - the assessment can also be sent automatically into Canvas.
HBS published a case study on Ment, and a webinar about how to use Ment for online teaching.

Bond teams up with Softbank-backed Reef Technology

The coronavirus lockdown created an unprecedented spike in e-commerce volume and significant delays for online orders, as retailers and e-commerce infrastructure struggled to keep up with demand.

Bond, which has signed prominent brands like Milk Bar since the beginning of the pandemic, is planning to expand to REEF lots in Miami, Washington D.C., and San Francisco later this year.

REEF is the largest parking operator in the country, with 4,500 lots. Through the partnership, Bond is able to set up distribution in a new location, selected by looking at their clients' order data, in two days.

Cheq recognized as a true leader in the space, winning 3 of the most prestigious awards

After being named amongst the top 100 hottest startups of 2019 by CNBC, Cheq continues being recognized as the leader in the space, earning 3 prestigious awards:

- Ad fraud solution of the year 2020, The Drum Magazine

- Best search software 2020, The Drum Magazine

- Best AI-driven Ad-fraud solution of the year 2020, Corporate Vision Magazine

Ottopia and Bestmile provide the first fleet control tower with built-in Teleoperations

If Bestmile and Ottopia have their way, when an autonomous vehicle experiences a technical glitch or an obstacle it doesn’t understand, the passengers may not even notice and deliveries will be made as scheduled.

That’s because the two companies–Bestmile with a best-in-class fleet orchestration platform; and Ottopia with its safe teleoperation technology–are partnering to deliver a remote control solution that enables entire fleets for transit or logistics to adapt when remote control is needed, in order to minimize service disruptions.

Autofleet Selected as Top 10 European Mobility Startup

Autofleet has been selected as a winner for one of the top 10 European mobility startups by the EUSP2020 Mobility committee. Autofleet has also been extremely helpful specifically during the COVID-19 pandemic, offering their services to public services organizations seeking help in transporting personnel and goods,

The PowerUP Online Startup Competition

Kudos to Mon4t for winning the PowerUp competition, over 350 early-stage startups that have applied. Montfort develops technology designed to make the treatment of neurological disorders more efficient and effective through the use of a real-time remote brain monitor that is personal, inclusive, and inexpensive.

The PowerUp competition was a joint venture between MizMaa, Gefen Capital, N1V and Quedma Innovation, with the important mission of supporting the Israeli ecosystem in these challenging times - we hope we made an impact.

Thanks to all the great entrepreneurs who applied!

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MizMaa Ventures

Tel Aviv, Israel

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