We partner with early stage ventures to build companies that transform lives and industries.
Today we remain committed to our vision of identifying transformative technologies, nurturing gifted entrepreneurs, and building companies into technology leaders.
Our team is dedicated to attracting and supporting imaginative and focused entrepreneurs and startups with never-been-done-before ideas. Group companies benefit from our combined technological, strategic, entrepreneurial & business expertise, broad networks, and wide attention span.
A word from our founder
Where We Invest
RDC was founded in 1993 by Elron and Rafael, a global leader of defense technologies and one of Israel's largest defense companies. RDC combines Rafael's scale and technological edge, with Elron's vast expertise in helping startups develop into leading tech companies.
Through RDC, which has exclusive rights to adapt Rafael's defense technologies for civilian markets, we initiate and develop new companies, and provide essential support from start to exit.
Since its inception, RDC has successfully invested in numerous hi-tech companies. A prime example of RDC's active end-to-end involvement in the growth of its companies is Given Imaging. Given Imaging redefined gastrointestinal disease diagnosis by developing the PillCam ingestible video capsule, based on a unique technology initially invented for military purposes. After becoming a world leader in its field, Given Imaging was acquired for $1 billion.
How We Invest
We aim high.
We invest primarily in early stage ventures with significant exit potential, in which we seek significant shareholder stakes, enabling us to provide hands-on support and contribute from our experience.
We become involved.
We play a defining role in the development of our group companies, by means of active involvement in all aspects of their business and day-to-day operations, to help them reach their long-term objectives.
We are committed.
As an operational holding company that invests its own capital in new and existing group companies, we have the flexibility to support the growth of our group companies over the long term, weather setbacks, and maximize exit events.
value of exit transactions since 2010
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Elron was founded in 1962 by Uzia Galil (Israel Prize recipient) as a result of his decisive commitment to bridge the gap between Israeli R&D and industry, and create “a knowledge-based industry” (later named hi-tech…). Uzia succeeded in raising initial funds of $160,000. By the end of the decade, Elron had 500 employees and 7 holdings in the fields of defense, computers, medtech & electronics, and was represented in over 80 cities in 6 continents.
1962: Elron is established
1966: Elron founds Elbit, the first Israeli commercial venture in the computer field, with a primary focus on defense, medical & communications technologiesToday Elbit Systems (NASDAQ: ESLT) is the largest non-government-owned defense company in Israel.
Pioneering Medical Imaging
In 1969, Elbit spun-off Elscint, which grew to become a world leader in the development of medical imaging technologies, forging a new technology: Computer Tomography (CT). In just over 10 years, the company achieved major breakthroughs, overshadowing the competition by reducing the scanning operation to seconds. It also entered the realm of ultrasound.
1972: Elscint goes public, becoming the first Israeli company to list on Nasdaq
1975: Elron follows suit, going public on the Tel Aviv Stock ExchangeBefore its sale in 1999, Elscint enjoyed a 10% world market share, had $300 million in revenues, and 3,000 employees.
By the 1980s, Elron had devised a strategy of nursing in-house projects to be later spun-off (in time to be known as an “incubator”…). During these years, Elron established Oprotech, which pioneered automated optical inspection of printed circuit boards, and was actively involved in the early stages of the establishment of Zoran, a pioneer in the development of digital signal processing (DSP) technology.
1981: Elron invests in Zoran (merged with CSR in 2011, LSE: CSR)
1981: Elron establishes Oprotech (today Orbotech, NASDAQ: ORBK)
1983: Elron invests in Zoran (merged with CSR in 2011, LSE: CSR)At the close of the decade, Elron had $420 million in aggregate annual sales.
Driven by its commitment to “building on the successes of the past while anticipating future trends”, in the early 1990s, Elron was one of the internet pioneers in Israel, expanding into information technologies and communications by the end of the decade. Landmark companies founded by Elron during these years include Partner Communication, Israel’s first GSM operator, and NetVision, Israel’s first – and later largest – ISP.
1993: Rafael Development Corporation (RDC) is established to commercialize Israeli MoD technologies in civilian markets
1994: Elron founds NetVision (merged with CellCom in 2011, NYSE: CEL)
1997: Elron founds Partner Communication (NASDAQ: PTNR)By the mid-1990s Elron had $1.2 billion in aggregate annual sales.
Through RDC, a joint subsidiary of Elron and Rafael (Israel’s 2nd largest defense company after Elbit Systems) which has exclusive rights to commercialize Rafael’s technologies in civilian markets, Elron has incubated and developed several technology leaders, most notably in the field of medical devices. Given Imaging redefined gastrointestinal disease diagnosis by developing the PillCam ingestible video capsule. Another RDC success is Medingo, which developed a miniature, lightweight insulin pump.
2001: Given Imaging goes public, and is the 1st company to list on the Nasdaq following 9/11
2005: Medingo, developer of an insulin micro-pump, is founded by RDCDuring the 2000s exit transactions (M&As & IPOs) totaled over $2 billion in value.
Pioneering Medical Devices
During the 2010s, Elron built a robust portfolio of medical device startups, including BrainsGate, which holds the promise to transform stroke care, and CartiHeal, which has pioneered cartilage regeneration. In the second half of the decade, ever focused on investing in fields where it can bring added value and facilitate opportunities, Elron established its cyber & enterprise software activities. By the close of the decade, Elron boasted 15 cybersecurity & ES investments, 2 exits, and more than 15 follow-on financings.
2010: Medingo is sold to Roche for $180 million
2014: Given Imaging is acquired by Covidien at a value of $1 billionElron also closed its first 2 cyber & enterprise software exits: the sale of Cloudyn to Microsoft and of Secdo to Palo Alto Networks.
Building tomorrow’s leaders
Today, we have significant holdings in a select number of start-up companies with disruptive potential. We are constantly and actively looking at new exciting ventures in order to continue and build tomorrow’s technology leaders. We continue to target investments in the cybersecurity & enterprise software fields, and to expand our focus to other promising verticals.
Yaron Elad, Elron’s CEO, interview on Bizportal
October 15, 2020
Read about Elron’s current investment strategy, the shift towards cyber and enterprise software investments, Elron’s focus on early-stage, our investment mechanism, and more.Read More
Sixgill Partners with ThreatQuotient to Accelerate Threat Response
October 15, 2020
Darkfeed will supply users of ThreatQuotient’s ThreatQ platform actionable intelligence to help organizations accelerate and automate decision-making with unparalleled confidence and efficiency.Read More
CartiHeal Receives FDA “Breakthrough Device Designation” for the novel Agili-C Implant
October 12, 2020
FDA’s Breakthrough Device Program is reserved for medical devices that provide for more effective treatment or diagnosis of life-threatening or irreversibly debilitating diseases or conditions.Read More