TEL AVIV, Israel— Biotech startup Matricelf will compete for the $1 million grand prize in the Startup World Cup in November, a global competition sponsored by Silicon Valley’s Pegasus Tech Ventures .

The Startup World Cup includes finalists from more than 70 countries, and Matricelf will be the first Israel-based company to compete in it. The startup is a personalized regenerative medicine firm founded in 2019. Its ultimate goal is “find the cure for disabled patients with spinal cord Injuries,” the company’s website said.

Matriceif made its way to the global competition by winning the first-ever Startup World Cup Israel pitch event, which was held Jan. 12 under the auspices of Tel Aviv-based Tech It Forward, a boutique consulting agency promoting Israeli startups.

“We brought this program to Israel for the first time, and got over 100 startup applications, ran 58 interviews and heard from the top 10 at a pitching event,” says Tech It Forward co-founder Jennifer Elias.

Those 10 startups received professional guidance and one-on-one meetings with Israeli legal consultants, financial advisers and marketing strategists before the final pitch event.

The three top companies then got a chance to compete for the sole Israeli finalist slot, and Matricelf won. (The other two were AI-powered brain-training solution for athletes i-BrainTech and alternative protein innovator Hargol FoodTech.)

The Startup World Cup will be held Nov. 12 in San Francisco. In addition to demonstrations by the competing companies, the event will include speakers and presentations from executives at such high-tech firms as HP, Square, Microsoft, Uber and Zillow.

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