Bank of New Zealand and Israel’s OurCrowd announce tech investment alliance

Partnership to further expand New Zealand-Israel startup collaboration

Auckland/Jerusalem – 22 Dec, 2020 – OurCrowd, one of the world’s largest global venture investing platforms, and Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today announced an innovative collaboration that will provide BNZ customers with direct access to exclusive OurCrowd cutting-edge companies, venture funds and its domestic and global networking opportunities and events.

BNZ GM Private Bank, Charlotte Noble-Beasley, said: “We’re excited about this first of its kind partnership in New Zealand because it will provide direct access for BNZ high net worth clients to one of the world’s most active global investment platforms. Being able to leverage OurCrowd’s global network will help our high net worth clients access opportunities with emerging tech companies and have the ability to further diversify their investment portfolios.”

Noble-Beasley says the partnership also provides more opportunities for New Zealand start-ups.

“BNZ backs New Zealand tech, we understand the industries and the companies in it, and we’re excited to be able to offer another avenue and service for our tech company customers with OurCrowd,” says Noble-Beasley.

In December 2019, OurCrowd won the tender to join a consortium to launch an Auckland Agritech incubator Sprout, which is sponsored by the NZ government’s Callaghan Innovation. Led by CEO Gil Meron, other partners in this incubator include US-based leading Agtech Venture group Finistere Ventures and New Zealand’s food giant Fonterra.

OurCrowd CEO, Jon Medved, said: “BNZ is one of New Zealand’s most respected financial institutions, so we’re delighted to provide its high net worth clients unparalleled access to invest and engage in leading global emerging companies. OurCrowd has already committed to an incubator in New Zealand and this new collaboration marks another important milestone in providing support to start-ups in New Zealand as well as delivering broad investor access to innovative companies tackling global challenges.

OurCrowd portfolio company CropX, which was originally founded in New Zealand, recently acquired New Zealand-based Regen. CropX has also opened an Australian office, as well as completing a one-year experiment in the New South Wales regional city in Wagga Wagga, which demonstrated significant water savings and crop yield increase for farmers using its cloud-connected ground sensors.

OurCrowd Managing Partner, Australia and Asia, Dan Bennett, said: “We established the OurCrowd office in Australia in 2014 and have shortly thereafter been providing our friends across the Tasman deep access to our global investment networks. New Zealand is a strategically important market for us and this new collaboration with BNZ will be a real win-win to support providing BNZ high net worth clients with strong global connectivity.”

In March 2020, the New Zealand government signed an innovation and R&D agreement with Israel.