October Startup Nation Seemed Like Contraction Nation

Vee platform for volunteering

a platform for volunteering: Vee co-founders (L-R), Gil Amsalemת May Piamenta, and Avi Amor. Photo Vee

October was not a good month for Israel Startup Nation with several more companies contracting, laying off workers, and so on. This is all because of the current worldwide financial crisis sparked by the ongoing war in Ukraine. And one Israeli firm is even being closed by its foreign parent company.

Hewlett Packard (HP) is shuttering its Israeli subsidiary Scitex, folding the company into its Indigo Division. Indigo has offices in Ness Ziona and Kiryat Gat. The move was announced in October and 60 of Scitex’s employees will be let go. Scitex was acquired by Hewlett-Packard in November 2005.

Also in October, Habana Labs, an Israeli chipmaker and an Intel Subsidiary, revealed plans to lay off 10% of its workforce as part of Intel’s overall cutbacks and worldwide layoffs. Habana Labs was acquired by Intel in 2020 for $2 billion.

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The move comes just a few months after Intel, which also owns Mobileye, announced plans to actually expand its operations in Israel and increase its manufacturing capacity there. But that was before the wave of business problems hit Israel Startup Nation.

OrCam Technologies Ltd, an Israeli medtech startup that offers new technology for the blind, said in October that it would be laying off 62 employees, or 16% of its total workforce.

OrCam says its mission is to improve the lives of individuals who are blind, visually impaired, and have reading difficulties. And just a few years ago the company expected as much as a $3 billion valuation as it planned on its initial public offering (IPO). But the IPO never materialized and now the company is suffering in the same way as everyone else from the drying up of capital for new investments.

Snyk, an Israeli cybersecurity startup in the field of cloud-native application security, was also forced to make cutbacks in its workforce. The company is laying off 198 of its employees, or about 14% of its workforce. Synk previously let go of another 30 of its employees in June.

Fundbox, an Israeli Fintech startup and a unicorn laid off 150 of its 360 employees in Israel and the U.S., or 40% of its overall workforce.

Cybereason, an Israeli cybersecurity startup, and a unicorn sacked 200 employees or 17% of its remaining workforce.

Vee, an Israeli startup that is building a platform for volunteering, laid off 50% of its remaining workforce.