Japan’s NTT Corporation opening innovation lab in Israel
The Fortune 100 company that generates $100 billion in annual sales and operates in 80 countries is hoping to collaborate with Israeli companies and academia to develop cutting-edge technologies in various fields
Jun Sawada, who serves as the president and CEO of NTT Corporation, a top five global technology and business solutions provider, announced on Wednesday the establishment of the NTT Innovation Laboratory in Israel. The company is a major player in the Japanese communication market, a Fortune 100 company with over $100 billion annual sales, has over 300,000 employees worldwide, and operates in over 80 countries.
The NTT Innovation Laboratory Israel will be officially established over the next couple of months under NTT's holding company. It will collaborate with Israeli companies and academia to develop cutting-edge technologies in various fields, which will support NTT and its customers to transform and confront current challenges and lead global innovation. Additionally, the company will explore possibilities of how to better integrate Israeli technologies in its services and products that could be distributed to its customers worldwide, as well as searching for business collaborations and investment opportunities with Israeli companies.
NTT President and CEO Jun Sawada. Photo: liveforu
NTT group companies have had activities in Israel, including investments in Israeli startups, such as Riskified, SundaySky, Otonomo, Vdoo Connected Trust, WSC Sports, Wiliot, and several joint projects with Israeli companies in various technology fields, including cybersecurity and cloud services.
Following President and CEO Jun Sawada's visit to Israel in February 2020, the group has enhanced its activities in Israel. This March, it announced the establishment of a $15 million fund, NTT Finance Israel L.P., with OurCrowd, one of the most active venture capital investors in Israel. The NTT Innovation Laboratory Israel will include five team members, who will focus on cybersecurity, digital health, and robotics. Besides working with the Israeli industry, the team will also promote cooperation with Israeli academics to locate potential R&D projects to achieve added value for NTT group companies and their customers.
“NTT manages complex technology and provides high-value business solutions to societies as well as customers across industries and around the world. Especially during this time, technology has a critical role to play in containing, managing, and providing solutions to the new challenges that have arisen out of the Covid-19 global pandemic than ever before,” said Sawada. “In 2021, NTT will increase its investments in R&D activities globally, reaching up to $5 billion. I believe that Israeli breakthroughs and cutting-edge technologies in various fields will support our customers and us to transform and confront these challenges so that NTT continues to lead the global innovation.”
NTT joins a long series of Japanese companies that established permanent offices in Israel in recent years as part of the movement that has been taking place to enhance the economic relations between Israel and Japan.
Noa Asher, who will run the entity in Israel, added: "Israeli companies will collaborate with NTT group companies and be able to operate through them not only in Japan, but also in the other 80 markets where they operate. Opening the entity in Israel is a strong message to the Japanese industry of the importance of strengthening business ties with Israeli innovation.”