ועידת Mind the Tech ניו יורק   יואל אסתרון מול כלכליסט

Mind the Tech NY 2022
"Israeli high-tech will exit this crisis in a stronger and healthier position"

"I’m willing to estimate that this crisis will be short and the recovery will be quick. I’m willing to say that by next year’s conference in New York the crisis will be behind us," said Calcalist Publisher Yoel Esteron at the start of the Mind the Tech conference in New York



This is the fifth time we are holding a conference in New York and it has been overbooked for over two weeks. Maybe we need to find a bigger place next year. Calcalist holds many tech conferences in Tel Aviv, London, Berlin, and Dubai, but there is no doubt that the conference in New York is our flagship.
I don’t want to put a damper on things, but we must ask ourselves this morning: Is Israeli high-tech, the driving force of the Israeli economy, in trouble? There is no way to avoid this issue, certainly not in a conference that brings together Israel’s tech stars with the American business community.
There is little question that the climate has changed - the global economy has suffered painful blows. Before we even managed to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, Putin attacked Ukraine and undermined global stability. The consequences were severe - supply chains suffered, there were shortages in essential products, and it looks like it will be a cold winter for Europe. All of this, together with the inflation ravaging the US and Europe, has made stock markets extremely nervous.
Is it any wonder, then, that Israeli high-tech companies, which went public at record valuations over the past two years, suffered painful setbacks on Wall Street? And it is clear that even flashy unicorns were required to cut costs and lay off employees. You don’t need to be a sophisticated analyst to see what is happening.
But what is the meaning of all of this? Is Israeli high-tech experiencing a V or U-shaped crisis? Is the current crisis in the tech sector similar to the 2000 dot com crisis?
Yes, it is more difficult for growth-stage startups to raise easy money. Yes, dream companies that raised massive sums and have yet to display significant income need to adjust themselves to the new reality and present a more attractive revenue model. Yes, valuations have dropped. Yes, bloated salary offers have fallen. But, I’m willing to estimate that this crisis will be short and the recovery will be quick. I’m willing to say that by next year’s conference in New York the crisis will be behind us. And I am not worried about saying this even though my words are being recorded.

Why? Because the fundamentals of Israeli high-tech are strong. We have a very experienced technological and business leadership of entrepreneurs and venture capital funds. We know how to build excellent technology and innovation-based companies. Over the past two decades, we also learned how to grow large companies, and not just race to a quick exit. We need to stay strong for a few quarters. That is all. Israeli high-tech will exit this crisis in a stronger and healthier position.