‘In Our Own Backyard’ Welcomes an Eclectic Group of Israeli Entrepreneurs

Nearly 150 people from the Baltimore-Washington corridor turned out for the Maryland/Israel Development Center’s (MIDC) premiere corporate networking program last week. ‘In Our Own Backyard: A Showcase of Israeli Companies in Maryland and Washington, D.C.’, held on October 18 at the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center at Howard County Community College, showcased Israeli companies that have decided to plant roots in the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. areas. Company focuses ranged from information and medical technology to development in the defense technology field.

Among the companies was Pango, which developed a high-tech pay-by-phone parking management system. NowForce demonstrated its innovative platform of standard mobile phones transformed into life-saving networks. Through deployment on this technology, emergency response teams are able to overcome the ‘Last Mile” problem. Integrated Systems Research Corporation (ISR) offered a look at its breakthrough technology of mapping and tracking. ISR installed custom fleet management systems for government and commercial customers worldwide. Also showcased were EL AL, Israel’s national airline and the Mamilla, David Citadel and Carlton Hotels.

“The world is in need of tremendous innovations coming out of Israel and we’re lucky to be surrounded by companies that find business value in our area. This was a terrific opportunity for investors to get in on the ground floor of the powerhouse that is Israeli innovation,” said Rob Frier, In Our Own Backyard chair.

The program also included presentations from Lior Shilat, Embassy of Israel’s Director of Investments and Roni Einav, author of From Nordau to Nasdaq and mega-entrepreneur of Israeli high-tech companies.

“Roni is one of the first and most successful entrepreneurs of the Israeli high-tech industry and Lior knows everything there is to know about what makes Israel the ‘start-up nation’ – it was a great pair,” said Abba David Poliakoff, MIDC Chairman of the Board.

The MIDC is a non-profit membership organization that promotes trade and investment between Maryland and Israeli companies. It is a partnership of the Baltimore Department of Business and Economic Development, Israel’s Ministry of Industry and Trade and THE ASSOCIATED: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore. MIDC is supported by several leading government and private companies in the Rockville and D.C. area, including the Montgomery County Department of Business and Economic Development. The Jewish Federation of Howard County and the Howard County Economic Development Authority partnered with the MIDC and played a large role in working with Howard County Community College.

Executive Director, Barry Bogage said MIDC uses ‘In Our Own Backyard’ as a platform to fulfill its mission of fostering bilateral economic development between Israel and Maryland. He said MIDC’s Board of Directors, members and staff actively assist Israeli businesses in successfully accessing Maryland and other U.S. market opportunities, concurrently identifying appropriate business prospects for Maryland companies in Israel. This is the second year MIDC has held ‘In Our Own Backyard.’

For a full list of MIDC preferred providers, to learn more about the organization, membership and its upcoming events, visit www.MarylandIsrael.org.

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