Israeli tech entrepreneurs are piling in to innovate in the automobile industry. Why? it might have something to do with the city's biblical traffic jams, writes Vincent Rousselet.
Arriving at Ben Gurion Airport at the crack of midnight on my tenth trip to Israel, I was met by Eli, the taxi driver who usually takes me around Tel Aviv when I come to stay. I like Eli: perhaps surprisingly for a former IDF paratrooper, he has a wonderful sense of humour.
"Becoming a millionaire in Tel Aviv is easy," he said to me that night on the way to the hotel, "all you have to do is to start as a billionaire…" grinning in the rear mirror.
Proving Eli wrong are Mobileye billionaire founders Ziv Aviram and Amnon Shashua. In March this year, they became billionaires twice over when Intel acquired the driverless technology company for a record-breaking $15.3bn.
The publication of Start-up Nation1 in 2009 may have popularised the fact that more tech ventures are started in Israel than in Japan, a country 15 times larger by population and by GDP. There were 1,400 Israeli start-ups in 2015. No wonder Israel has the highest number of start-ups per capita globally.