The first half of 2021 has been a promising one for Israeli high-tech companies, which raised a record $11.9 billion — more than the $10.3 billion raised throughout all of 2020.

A total of 38 transactions of more than $100 million each completed in the first half of the year amounted for approximately 50 percent of the fundraising, with the majority of investors’ capital flowing toward cybersecurity and fintech companies, data from the recently published IVC-Meitar Tech Review shows.

The review, published by the IVC Research Center and high-tech and venture capital and law firm Meitar, evaluates fundraising, mergers and acquisitions and the capital markets to provide analysis of local high-tech activity.

The first half of 2021 also saw increased Israeli high-tech activity in American, Israeli and other public markets, as reflected by the highest numbers yet of IPOs, SPAC transactions and follow-on offerings during this time period. The Tel Aviv Stock Exchange attracted 35 out of the 48 IPOs that took place, the U.S. public markets 12 and London one.

Meanwhile, merger and acquisition deals in the first half of 2021 amounted to about $4 billion, similar to the same period the previous year. The biggest acquisitions were MyHeritage (acquired by Francisco Partners for $600 million) and Prospera and VDOO, which were acquired for $300 million each by Valmont and JFrog, respectively.

“The Startup Nation wants to be a scale-up nation. Companies in Israel try to match their counterparts in Silicon Valley. All those unicorn companies, including those that went public, will have to prove they deserve their high valuation,” said Itay Frishman, a partner at Meitar.

“Until recently most Israeli companies were sold or evaluated based on dreams and promises. Today, the Israeli high-tech market is ready for the next phase. The final outcome will be tested in the coming years. The words will remain on paper and the market will focus on revenues and continued accelerated growth. The future will determine if what we see is the real thing.”

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