New York Hosts 21 Israeli-founded Unicorns… And Counting

Following a recent flurry of investment activity, New York City is now home to 21 Israeli-founded unicorns — privately held companies valued at $1 billion or more — according to the United States — Israel Business Alliance (USIBA).

Each of these companies’ global or U.S. headquarters is based in Manhattan, establishing New York as the city with the second most Israeli-founded unicorns in the world, behind Tel Aviv.

“The numbers we’re seeing in New York are unprecedented,” USIBA president Aaron Kaplowitz said.

“Despite a year filled with challenges and uncertainty, New York remains a global hub for growth industries that Israeli entrepreneurs continue to disrupt.”

Over the past six months, 10 Israeli-founded companies based in New York have achieved unicorn status: Axonius, BigID, Forter, Kaltura, K Health, Melio, Papaya Global, SimilarWeb, Talkspace and Yotpo.

They joined Gett, Monday.com, OrCam, Outbrain, Payoneer, Riskified, Sisense, Taboola, WeWork, VAST Data and Via.

“There’s no doubt that Covid-19 disoriented the investment community,” Kaplowitz said. “Once investors and growth-stage companies got their bearings, and some technologies gained more relevance from the pandemic, investment activity picked up in a big way — especially in 2021.”

Since January, seven New York-based Israeli-founded companies crossed the $1 billion threshold: online therapy provider Talkspace; accounts payable tool Melio; AI-driven telemedicine app K Health; cybersecurity asset management firm Axonius; workforce management platform Papaya Global; e-commerce marketing platform Yotpo; and video platform service Kaltura.

New York City is now home to 21 Israeli-founded unicorns, privately held companies valued at $1 billion or more. (Annie Spratt/Unsplash)

During the record-setting first quarter of 2021, Israeli-founded companies raised $5.37 billion total —– double the capital they raised over the first quarter of 2020.

In 2019, when USIBA released the findings from the first-ever New York – Israel Economic Impact Report, only five Israeli-founded unicorns maintained headquarters in New York City: Lemonade, Compass, Payoneer, Taboola and WeWork. Lemonade and Compass have since shed their unicorn status by going public, and the other three are soon following suit.

Currently, 506 Israeli-founded businesses are based in New York State. USIBA, headquartered in New York, recently opened its second office, in Miami.

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