The Legal 500


Share this page


Doing Business in Israel

Contributed by Adv. Zvi Bar-Nathan (Partner) and Adv. Dr. Daphna Kapeliuk (Partner), Goldfarb Seligman Law Offices

Business Environment

Often referred to as ‘the start-up nation’, the State of Israel offers exceptional opportunities for foreign investors in a variety of industries. The technology industry, and especially the hi-tech sector, have played a prominent role in Israel in the past decade and have been the major driving force of the country's economy. Although small in size, Israel's investment opportunities are diverse and include, among others: hi-tech, aeronautics, telecommunications, biotechnology, security, chemical industry, agro-technology, environment and more. Alongside its vibrant hi-tech industry, Israel discovered offshore natural gas reserves in 2009-2010.

With its long standing financial and monetary stability, pro-investment policies, entrepreneurial culture and innovative, bright, creative and talented human resources, Israel has attracted large investments by major multinational companies over the years. Seeking top-notch research and development hubs for their businesses, these companies view Israel as an innovative and daring environment.

Read more…

Legal market overview

The Israeli legal market is sophisticated and foreign investors will find a market replete with lawyers of international standard charging rates that are much lower than New York or London equivalents. In recent years, several of the larger firms have engaged in mergers that upscaled the size of the market’s largest competitors. At the same time, it is a market that is heavily overlawyered – having almost as many attorneys as France, despite the gulf in population size – and this has driven down fees and pushed a number of lawyers to establish boutique firms. Recent examples include former Yuval Levy & Co partner Tomer Maharshak opting not to join newly merged firm Tadmor & Co. Yuval Levy & Co. and instead establishing corporate boutique Tomer Maharshak & Co.

December 2015 saw Epstein, Knoller, Chomsky, Osnat, Gilat, Tenenboim & co merge with M. Firon & Co Advocates and Notaries. Large full-service firms have been actively hiring and several of them recruited during the disintegration of Zellermayer, Pelossof, Rosovsky, Tsafrir & Co in early 2016, as prominent figures and teams from that firm variously moved to Erdinast, Ben Nathan, Toledano & Co. Advocates; Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal Law Offices; and Fischer Behar Chen Well Orion & Co. Erdinast, Ben Nathan, Toledano & Co. Advocates also recruited a team of project finance lawyers, led by Jonathan Finklestone, from Tadmor & Co. Yuval Levy & Co..

As yet, international law firms are not a significant on-the-ground presence in the market despite legislative changes in 2012 allowing foreign firms to operate in Israel; notable firms with a limited presence include Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP, Greenberg Traurig P.A and Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner LLP. International firms considering accessing the market on a greater scale must wrestle with the much lower fee structures in Tel Aviv and the political difficulties of doing business in Israel and the rest of the Middle East.

Dispute resolution is a cornerstone practice of the Israeli legal market but the chief standout practice areas in 2015 were real estate, where a scarcity of residential facilities continues to drive significant renewal and newbuild projects; hi-tech, and in particular cyber security; and general corporate and commercial transactions. The recent opening of a number of gas fields, which followed the discovery of significant offshore gas reserves, means that a number of law firms are attracting a markedly increased level of projects and energy work.

Interview with...

Law firm managing partners and practice heads explain how their firms are adapting to clients' changing needs

Press releases

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to

Legal Developments in Israel

Legal Developments and updates from the leading lawyers in each jurisdiction. To contribute, send an email request to

Press Releases worldwide

The latest news direct from law firms. If you would like to submit press releases for your firm, send an email request to
  • Aligning Our Interests – Regional Mobility In The Context Of Tourism

    At the recently held Summit 100 Business Forum in Sarajevo, many topics of contemporary relevance for the region of Southeast Europe were expectedly touched upon. Be it the supply of sustainable energy, the position of women in business, or the issues related to infrastructure & transport conditions, it was an opportunity for a number of prominent experts and government officials to weigh in with their opinions on how to improve the overall business situation in our region. However, one of the greatest impressions from the conference have been the discussions on the mobility of goods and people within our region, as well as the respective implications. Having in mind the beginning of summer being just a few days away, perhaps the most illustrative example in this regard can be the tourism industry and the ways in which it has been – or potentially can be – affected by such regulatory frameworks of SEE countries.
  • EBRD Activity In Serbia

    According to recent reports, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) has plans of investing more than EUR 3 billion in the Western Balkans region, of which approximately EUR 300 million is assigned to Serbia.
  • Slovenian Competition Agency Adopts A Commitment Decision In The Hyundai Case

    On 12 March 2015, the Slovenian Competition Protection Agency (" HAT "), the national distributor of Hyundai vehicles, together with a network of authorised repair shops for Hyundai motor vehicles.
  • Bosnian Diaspora Looks To Invest Back Home

    According to recent media reports, the Bosnian Central Bank (BCC) has presented information regarding the scope of investments made by the country's diaspora.  More precisely, it has been reported that more than EUR 1.5 billion of investments are being made by the Bosnian diaspora each year through remittances and formal channels – meaning that the exact figure is even larger when accounting for other, informally made investments which have been proven to exist. If to some these figures seem somewhat overblown, it should be noted that there are around 2 million registered citizens of BiH around the world, ranking the country 1 th in the world when looking at the share of immigrants in relation to the population, at the same time further showcasing the importance of diaspora's involvement in investment practices. 
  • Ikea Invests In A Designer Outlet Complex In Croatia

    ​Recent news reports show that IKEA, the world famous Swedish multinational retailer, is getting ready to invest EUR 88 million in the construction of a Designer Outlet complex in Croatia.
  • Karanović & Nikolić Attends TMA Europe Conference In Rome

    ​Turnaround Management Association (TMA) Europe held its ninth annual conference in Rome on 9 and 10 June. Partner at Karanović & Nikolić, Maja Jovančević Šetka , attended the conference as a board member of TMA Serbia.
  • NSTLAW takes part in the Briefing Session on Foreign Corrupt Practices Act

    American Chamber of Commerce in Serbia has scheduled a Briefing Session on Foreign Corrupt Practices Act on Tuesday, June 21 at 15:00 at AmCham premises in Smiljaniceva 24, Belgrade.
  • GRP Rainer: Assessing intention to prepare a will

    A prerequisite for an effective will is a serious intention on the part of the testator to prepare one. Assessing any intention to draft a will can prove to be critical.
  • EGC: Winnetou to retain trademark protection for time being

    On March 18, 2016, the General Court of the European Union ruled that the well-known novel character Winnetou shall continue to enjoy trademark protection (Az.: T-501/13).
  • Maria Borzova gives expert opinion on pharmaceutical market situation on PharmVestnik-TV

    Manager of VEGAS LEX Life sciences projects Maria Borzova has discussed current pharmaceutical market issues in the 7 days in 7 minutes program on the PharmVestnik-TV channel.