Tmura rides Israel’s 2013 record breaking wave for exits, capitalizing by nearly $2M worth in exit proceeds
Perhaps VC’s and fortune hunting Angels should look toward those other kinds of Angels, one’s who carry a more more traditional expansive use of the title, the next time they need inspiration for where to make their next big investment. Tmura – the Israeli Public Service Venture Fund, a not-for-profit charitable organization that asks companies to donate share options to be earmarked for Israeli youth educational programs – announced that they’ve brought in nearly $2M in charitable profit sharing from startup exit deals for the fiscal year ending 2013.
A year for the books
Tmura owes its record breaking year to the success of the Google/Waze and Cisco/Intucell exits. All-in-all this one-of-a-kind fund has generated over $10M in charity donations over its 11 year history as it keeps the profit focused world of startups honest in their efforts to give a little back to the society from whence they came.
Lately, either Tmura’s been getting better at what it does or money-strapped startups are becoming more charitable because Tmura also announced a record number of companies donating options this year; 54 in all. That adds up to about ⅙ of the 319 total donor companies Tmura has has managed to rope in since its founding in 2002.
In an interview with Tmura Founder and Chairman Yadin Kaufmann, he explained that several things are contributing to Tmura’s record increases: “Entrepreneurs are coming to the understanding that they have an obligation to be responsible corporate citizens. Tmura offers them a relatively painless path to be just that, and one that’s also highly impactful. We’ve also approached a number of incubators and accelerators and got them to commit their participants to donating exit shares as part of signing up to their program.”
Lool Ventures recently donated some of their exit earnings and OurCrowd is another recent signatory to Tmura’s charity venture. Kaufmann notes that although targeting incubators and accelerators is not a new strategy, there has been a significant increase in their number as of late, another driving force behind the jump in Tmura’s 2013 figures.
Think of the Children
This year’s entrants into Tmura’s corporate giving program include Tipa, ScoreOID, SQream, TawkOn, Parko, Tag’by, Medisafe, FTB Pro, MetaView, Big Blue Parrot, Ubimo, RotaryView, and enVerid among others. Proceeds from resulting exits of the above companies and others, have and will go to support organizations like:
Brothers Big Sisters of Israel who provide adult mentors for nearly 500 children of single-parent families in six areas around the country.
Machshava Tova who operate computer centers in peripheral areas to teach computer skills and “narrow the digital gap.” Currently operates six centers as well as two mobile units. Recently selected to run a new youth center in Lod, together with the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (“The Joint”), the municipality, and other strategic/funding partners.
Sifriyat Pyjama, a pre-literacy and values program, based on a successful model operating in the United States. Currently distributes over 1,600,000 books to 210,000 pre-school aged children in 155 communities. In January, will begin a pilot for a similar program in the Arab sector.
Tovanot B’chinuch, a program to empower elementary and high school principals. In just two years, has already grown its network to 14 schools in nine different communities, and also engages more than 900 volunteers.
ValueSports, a program that utilizes sports activity to teach sportsmanship, values and character-building. Currently works with twelve youth sports clubs around the country and is piloting a project with Beer Sheva municipality to operate on a city-wide level. Also partnering with Wingate to implement this unique model on a national level.
Kaufmann is understandably proud of this years accomplishments and the philanthropic bridge that Tmura is serving as between Israel’s startup community and Israeli society at large: “Tmura’s expansion in 2013 shows that our donation model provides an attractive giving option for high-tech companies, as Tmura enabled 54 new start-ups and their teams to become involved in philanthropy. It’s also nice to see that many of the non-profit projects we supported are themselves graduating from the ‘startup’ phase, and are rolling out on a national scale.”