The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is targeting $5m to invest in agro biotechnology firms.

The Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Yissum Technology Transfer Company is seeking to raise $5m to support agro biotechnology firms after closing a similar $5m fund for life science companies. The University operates the only Faculty of Agriculture in Israel. Notable staff include Professor Haim Rabinowitch, the father of the cherry tomato, and Professor Oded Shoseyov. Shoseyov’s ventures include biotech CollPlant, chemical toilet developer Paulee Cleantec, and nanotech firm Fulcrum SP Materials. “Agriculture is Israel’s next mega-trend. If you compare the sector with another successful Israeli industry, the life sciences, agriculture offers opportunities almost at the same scale, but with investments whose financing Israel can digest, and at a lower level of risk that the life sciences. Ultimately, we can achieve higher multiples in agriculture,” said Yissim president and chief executive officer Yaacov Michlin. “The average investment in an agriculture product through marketing is $15 million.” Yissum will unveil a planned company, and detail the technologies it will utilise, on Sunday.

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