Mr. Yigal Erlich is the founding father of the Israeli venture capital industry and one of the most prominent figures in the Israeli high-tech arena in the past 15 years.

At the beginning of the 1990s, Mr. Erlich identified a market failure and a huge need in Israel to establish for the first time a professionally-managed venture capital industry that will fund the exponential growth of high tech ventures coming out of Israel.

In late 1992, Mr. Erlich convinced the Israeli government to allocate $100 million for his venture capital vision. Within a period of three years, Erlich, along with the other members of the core team at Yozma, established ten venture funds. These ten funds, which include Gemini, JPV, Nitzanim (Concord), Polaris, STAR and Walden Israel, are the backbone of the vibrant and sophisticated venture capital market that Israel has today.

Mr. Yigal Erlich is the founder of the Israel Venture Association and served as its Chairman. Between 1984 and 1992, Mr. Erlich served as the Chief Scientist of Israel's Ministry of Industry and Trade. During his eight-year tenure as Chief Scientist, Mr. Erlich commanded an annual budget of $200 million, primarily directed at research and development projects of high-technology companies. In addition, Mr. Erlich initiated the Generic Technology program which fostered cooperation on long-term R&D activities through the creation of consortia of companies with research institutes and universities worldwide.

Mr. Erlich also started the Technology Incubator Program that led to the creation of 24 Incubation Centers throughout Israel. Mr. Erlich was instrumental in the establishment of several bi-national industrial and technology R&D cooperation agreements with Canada, France, the Netherlands, Singapore and Spain. Mr. Erlich was the Chairman of the Executive Committee of the US-Israel Bi-national Industrial Research and Development Foundation (BIRD), and a Director of the Dead Sea Works, Israel Chemicals, Israel Oil Refineries, Hadassah's commercialization company - Hadassit, and the Technion Research and Development Co. Ltd.

Mr. Erlich was the Deputy Chairman of the National Reasearch & Development Council of Israel until 2010 and the Chairman of MATIMOP, a non profit Government Entity for the promotion of industrial R&D; A Board Member of the Russian Venture Capital Company (RVC), a $1 billion government fund of funds and was a consultant to several governments including New Zealand, Korea, Canada, Latvia, Slovakia and estonia.

Between October 2010 and June 2011, Mr. Erlich was the chair of a committee within Eureka program, targeting new methods for financial innovation. He also participated, several years ago, in two EEC projects for transferring the success factors from the Israeli experience in high-tech start-ups to several European countries and advised the World Bank on the adoption of policies and performance monitoring in Venture Capital in Western China.

Mr. Erlich holds B.Sc. and M.Sc. in Chemistry and an MBA from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.


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