The consortium called Israel IoT Innovations – i3 Equity Partners (“i3”) has established an investment vehicle at Tel Aviv University. The university said that the initially provided sum of $20 million will help develop IoT technologies, Reuters reports.
The consortium will join forces with Israel's Pitango Venture Capital and the university's own company, Ramot, to launch the vehicle. According to Reuters, the group said it expected to select seed and pre-seed startups with “the optimal conditions for success.” This includes financial investments of up to $1 million each.
In addition, the investment will also provide the group with the access to multinational corporations at all stages of development.
“We are excited to be partners of such a unique worldwide syndication,” Microsoft Ventures said in a short statement on its website. “We intend to assist and collaborate with i3 and its portfolio companies while tapping the acclaimed ingenuity and know-how of the Israeli tech industry.”
A steady line of investments
Microsoft Ventures is a venture capital arm of Microsoft that acts as a strategic partner actively investing in startups. It focuses on technologies enabling a mobile-first and cloud-first future, as well as big data & analytics, business SaaS, cloud infrastructure, machine learning, productivity, and security, among others.
The official debut was in late May this year. Since then, the company has made 14 investment deals with various partners.
Furthermore, the latest investment follows in the footsteps of Microsoft Ventures' new strategy to look for investments and acquisitions. As a result, this differs from the previous strategy of accelerating startups, now specifically differentiated to Microsoft Accelerator.