Chutzpah, Tel Aviv: & Entrepreneurs: The Story of MyCurrencyTransfer.com’s 3 month relocation
When the idea of moving MyCurrencyTransfer to Tel Aviv was first muted, we were often met with one of two reactions; ‘‘are you barking mad to leave London, a major financial center’’ or ‘‘ what is this, a three month holiday?’’ The reality? Wrong on both counts.
Moving our startup to Tel Aviv for three months has made us more mature, knowledgeable and risk taking entrepreneurs. It’s helped our business tremendously. We knew from the outset Israel had a reputation for being a high tech capital of the world. However, living and breathing this innovation every day was one of the most rewarding experiences in our short careers to date.
In this article, I’ll run through 7 of the best reasons why any overseas startup would benefit from living & working in Israel. We chose 7 because this means ‘to be full’ in Biblical Hebrew. And we were full of praise for this country!
Israel is an ‘economic miracle’
So, why Israel? Well, for starters Israel is home to more startups per capita than anywhere else in the world. More companies listed on Nasdaq than the whole of Europe combined. I could go on. The fact this ‘economic miracle’ provides such inspiration and talent to many, makes it a legitimate home for any startup. I fully endorse the Startup Visa being proposed.
Military Experience = High Tech Success
I firmly believe the military has contributed to Israel’s storming success in high tech. It’s bred a mature, sophisticated and diverse range of entrepreneurs. I’m absolutely convinced that the teamworking, ‘‘one in all in’’ mentality cultivated in the army is absolutely transferrable to the workplace. If young Israelis are willing to put their life on the line for a greater cause, you can be sure they’ll fight tooth and nail for there startup to succeed. That’s inspirational!
We learnt very quickly that most Israelis will not take no for an answer. It’s a great business treat. Whether I was in a boardroom or Shuk Ha Carmel, I loved watching Israelis put themselves in awkward conversations to get what they want. It’s not rude, it’s pure, unadulterated Chutspah!
Meetups & events
Every day there is a meetup, tweetup or some type of entrepreneurial event going on in the city. You are never too far from a free falafel or hummous! Even if there isn’t an organized event, you see startups mingling in coffee shops and pubs talking about MVP’s, Go to market and all things tech. It’s awesome!
The beach & weekend getaways
Every Friday is the same conversation with my pals: Bugrashov Beach, Herzliya or Trek up north. I fell in love with the outdoor culture in Israel which affords you the luxury of seeing some of the most spectacular landscapes, sunsets and more. What could be better after a hard week’s work! Whether we were mingling with Kibbutzniks in Ein Gev, partying in Tel Aviv or trekking Masada, the opportunity to explore in Israel is endless and never boring.
Tel Aviv is a 24/7 playground of fun
How do you say, ‘ Ein Cmo Tel Aviv!’ Israelis have a work hard, play hard attitude and it’s been such a pleasure to immerse ourselves in this playground of fun. It’s a city that never sleeps. We were shocked to find out the city actually organizes ‘ layla lavan’ a special white night that encourages round the clock partying, exhibitions and events. We participated. My top three things about Tel Aviv were: daily cycling from Neve Tzedek to Sde Dov, the coffee shop culture & playing ‘Matkot’ (beach tennis).
The hummous is sensational (but the picked lemon kavush dreadful)
Best. Hummous. Ever. Tel Aviv houses some of the best hummous joints in the world and I would strongly recommend either: Abu Hassan in Jaffa, Hummus Ha Carmel or Shlomo & Doron. However, sorry readers, I know ‘limon kavush’ is a favorite out here but I am not a fan.
Thank you Israel.
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