Hello Haifa

A WALK IN THE PARK

A WALK IN THE PARK

Dozens of high-tech companies will operate from the emerging Haifa Life Sciences Park

Dozens of high-tech companies specializing in medicine and life sciences will soon operate from the emerging Life Sciences Park, located at Haifa’s southern entrance, opposite Matam High-tech Park and in proximity to Sami Ofer Stadium and Naot Peres Neighborhood.

Moti H. Meir, Director of Business Development at Haifa Economic Corporation [HEC], is also in charge of the Park’s business development: “The Haifa Life Sciences Park is our flagship project, and has our full attention. Moreover, the Mayor, Mr. Yona Yahav, and the CEO of the HEC, Mr. Or Shahaf, are closely involved with the project and invested in its success.

“As part of this project, we constantly create connections between international companies and local key players in the Life Sciences field. For instance, just last week we conducted a meeting between GE Healthcare Ultrasound Division and the Technion’s Faculty of Biomedical Engineering. The Ultrasound Division is currently located outside of Haifa, but will soon move to the Haifa Life Sciences Park. The connection seemed natural since the Faculty of Biomedical Engineering is specializing, among other things, in the field of ultrasound, and I realized it was A MUST for these two parties to meet.

“The Haifa Economic Corporation hosts international delegations on a regular basis, some referred to us from the Haifa Municipality, others by organizations and our pre-existing connections, and also by embassies and foreign affairs establishments. Regardless of where they came from, we introduce them to Haifa, the Haifa Economic Corporation and the Haifa Life Sciences Park project, and always try to help them find the right connection in Haifa.

“The park will be ready in about three months, and by June most companies will start their operations and activity there. The entire park will be comprised of five buildings, where the first one is in final construction stages and is already 70% occupied. The Ultrasound Division of GE International, mentioned before, took 5,000 m2; it’s a major milestone. Additionally, we have MindUP – the Digital Health Incubator, a joint venture of Medtronic, IBM, Pitango Venture Capital, Impact 1st Investments and Rambam Medical Center. There is also another international company, Sonova, a manufacturer of innovative hearing care solutions.

“Apart from that there are several smaller companies, and we are negotiating with companies from the Technion, the Haifa University, and the Rappaport Institute for Research. Our connections with these are made through what is called Technology Transfer Companies (TTC/TTO), companies that sell intellectual property (IP) of researchers from the Haifa University and the Technion.”

“As for entrepreneurship, we currently examine the option of offering workspaces for young companies and startups in the fields of Digital Health and Medical Devices. That means that if you’re a healthcare entrepreneur, we can offer you a full-pack solution of workspace and guidance, such as mentoring from experts in the field, office hours of consultants, investment opportunities, and ecosystem support and networking. We also collaborated with the Israel Innovation Institute to establish BeWell Haifa – a venture aimed to support the healthcare ecosystem in Haifa, promoting collaboration with medical centers, academic institutions, corporates and healthcare entrepreneurs.

“The financial potential of the Park is tremendous, and the same is true of the occupational potential as the facility will create more job opportunities for local residents as well as for employees out of Haifa. The park is highly accessible, with its proximity to Hof HaCarmel bus and railway stations and the Carmel Tunnels; and the direct connection to the coastal highway as well as to the heart of Mount Carmel’s residential neighborhoods, via Freud Road and the adjacent Naot Peres Neighborhood, where there currently are 1,400 dwelling units, and 6,300 more are to be built. The Municipality made sure the apartments will be affordable for young people.

“The plans are very promising, and I’m certain it’s a promise that will be fully fulfilled. We fought very hard for it to be realized, but it’s going to be a huge success.”