For many tech professionals, this has become an annual ritual. With the new year fast approaching and the holiday festivities just wrapping up, the tech and business worlds gather in Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show before the hectic pace begins.
CES, the largest trade show in the world, has grown from focusing on gadgets to hosting pavilions, experiences, and tech booths covering mobile, climate tech, civic tech, gaming, content, Web3, metaverse, and even food tech.
The conference incorporates new verticals that reflect how consumer technology impacts every aspect of our lives. If we end up in 2022 with an explosion of generative AI (creative AI), the infancy of this technology in consumer use shows how the technology will continue to evolve and change.
The evolution and development of this conference parallels the global development of Israeli technology. Each vertical has a strong presence in Israel, which has had a noticeable impact at CES and other global conferences.
Despite bleak predictions for 2023, the grave year for Israeli startups, Startup Nation had a strong presence at CES and set the tone for the year.
While there are some variables companies cannot control, such as market conditions, there are variables they can control, such as taking proactive steps to grow their business in-person.
Startup nations are thriving during the pandemic, and digital interactions are the way the world does business. However, if things go back to “normal” and we are inundated with AI-generated images and text, in the near future we may not be able to tell whether we are communicating with a human or a robot.
“Israel’s star is bright, with a dozen startups in various stages representing a cross-section of innovation.”
That’s why attending events and conferences and doing business in person will become even more important in 2023 and beyond. Israeli entrepreneurs instinctively jumped at the opportunity and helped kick off the year at CES.
CES’ startup pavilion, Eureka Park, took on a global vibe, as countries like France, South Korea and Sweden actively supported their startup ecosystems at the show.
The most striking thing about entering this pavilion is the Israel Export Association Pavilion in the middle of the exhibition hall buzzing! There are companies representing all verticals in the ecosystem, and judging by the positive conversations, it’s clear that something is happening.
Oliver Mitchell, partner at ff Venture Capital, noted: “Israel’s stars are shining brightly, with a dozen startups in various stages representing a cross-section of innovation. In fact, their international pavilion may be the busiest of all the booths at the Venetian.” of.”
Early-stage Israeli companies use conferences such as CES to network with potential customers and meet face-to-face with potential customers of larger corporations that they might otherwise not be able to reach.
Companies from the Israel Pavilion are on display here, including several notable startups whose solutions align with the hottest trends at this year’s CES.
In the metaverse, Eye-Minders helps VR gamers deal with motion sickness by analyzing users’ eye movements; and SparX, which generates custom visualizations of the interiors of vacant houses, are notable startups in this space.
Sportstech, which spans multiple verticals (in this case IoT), is represented by BlazePod, which utilizes light-emitting pods for high-intensity physical activity, and Healables, wearable devices that deliver tiny amounts of electrical current to stimulate and speed healing.
None of this would have been possible without the Israeli Economic Mission and the energetic and passionate staff of the Israel Export Institute.
Whether it is CES or other large conferences such as the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference in San Francisco or the National Retail Federation in New York, many business opportunities for Israeli companies would not be possible without the support of these government agencies.
Climate technology is another important vertical at this year’s CES, and the booth of BreezoMeter (recently acquired by Google) was packed.
As CES expands to include streaming, publishing and media, big names including Israel’s Outbrain are present in the C-Space pavilion.
Industry players like Mobileye have traditionally used CES as a platform to share news, announce new products and build thought leadership.
This year was no exception, with Mobileye founder Amnon Shashua laying out his vision for the year ahead in a widely watched speech.
Building relationships is also key to startup success.
To support its community, EcoMotion, an Israeli mobile ecosystem partner, held its annual event at a hotel near the Las Vegas Convention Center. Here, mobility startups are presented and networked with potential investors and corporate partners.
Other notable Israeli companies in mobility on display at CES include NoTraffic, an IoT platform for urban mobility; C2A Security, which provides end-to-end automotive cybersecurity solutions; Foretellix, a test drive for developing and deploying autonomous driving systems , verification and confirmation platform.
“CES was great and exceeded expectations,” Foretellix CEO Ziv Binyamini told ISRAEL21c. “We met partners, customers…and senior executives in this rare annual opportunity, with many key decision makers in one place.”
Binyamini said his early-stage growth companies have been attending CES since their Series A funding round. “It’s been very rewarding, and some of the beginnings of our strongest relationships are the result of our annual attendance.”
This shows how far the ecosystem has come, and it involves not only early-stage companies, but also established companies that will continue to expand their influence in the years to come.
Find Israeli culture in interesting places
The influence of Israeli culture, not just technology, can be seen at many global conferences. Las Vegas, where CES is held each year, has a large Israeli community which adds to the vibrancy of the local Jewish community.
Fast-growing Israeli chain Miznon recently opened a branch in the Palazzo Hotel near the convention center, a testament to the popularity of Israeli food. Las Vegas embraces street food and “canteen” culture, and restaurants are packed with CES attendees throughout the day.
Oliver Mitchell of ff Venture Capital summed up his impressions of the conference by saying, “This year’s big themes included the electrification of mobility, the automation of everything, and the use of AI to drive content creation. Everyone, CES is back!”
Kicking off CES, 2023 should be a bumper year for Israeli tech companies that are actively attending conferences and building relationships.
Jonathan “Yoni” Frenkel is a content strategist and founder of YKC Media, a digital marketing agency that works with the global tech/venture capital/startup community.