Citi Venture Capital enters Israel(2)

Citi Venture Capital International has made its first investment in Israel in Aviv Venture Capital’s second fund.

Citi Venture Capital International, the venture arm of the US bank, has backed Israeli firm Aviv Venture Capital with a $20 million (€15 million) commitment.

Aviv Venture Capital is targeting a $50 million first close for its second fund in October or November. The firm is aiming for a final close on $100 million.

Citi’s spokesperson said: “This is the first time we’ve gone into Israel and we’re looking for more opportunities in these kinds of markets and technology is one of the focuses of the arm.”

This is not the first time Citi Venture Capital has invested in another fund, however the money for the deal came from Citi Proprietary Capital, the bank’s own investment division. Citi’s spokesperson said: “Investors in Citi Venture Capital have not had their money invested in this fund but they will benefit from the connections made through the commitment.” 

Aviv Venture Capital’s first fund invested $25 million in nine companies.  

Aviv Venture Capital’s managing partner Amir Guttman said: “Our strategic focus is on technology for large existing industries as opposed to most venture capital money which has been invested in telecoms, semiconductors and software. We use the same technologies developed in these areas applying high tech to low technology areas.”

The Israeli firm has invested in Fricso, which produces technology to reduce friction between metal parts in car engines lowering energy consumption and increasing power generation to meet regulatory demands for clean fuel consumption. It has also invested in lung imaging company Deepbreeze which has adapted military technology developed in Israel.