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The Legal 500 Hall of Fame Icon The Legal 500 Hall of Fame highlights individuals who have received constant praise by their clients for continued excellence. The Hall of Fame highlights, to clients, the law firm partners who are at the pinnacle of the profession. In Europe, Middle East and Africa, the criteria for entry is to have been recognised by The Legal 500 as one of the elite leading lawyers for seven consecutive years. These partners are highlighted below and throughout the editorial.
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Israel > Hi-tech and start-ups > Law firm and leading lawyer rankings

Editorial

Index of tables

  1. Hi-tech and start-ups
  2. Next generation lawyers: Hi-tech and start-ups
  3. Leading individuals

Next generation lawyers: Hi-tech and start-ups

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Leading individuals

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Who Represents Who

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Acting for growth companies, venture capital investors and six of the countries most prolific technology incubators, Amit, Pollak, Matalon & Co. Advocates and Notary has 'high-level expertise' across the spectrum of the Israeli tech sector. The firm fields a sizeable hi-tech team jointly headed by Yoav Etzyon and Ian Rostowsky, the latter of whom acted for ObserveIt in relation to a $33m Series B financing round led by Bain Capital Ventures, Spring Lake Equity Partners, and Night Dragon Security. Similarly, Etzyon advised Nyotron Information Security on a large Series A financing round primarily involving US investors. Additionally, Etzyon advised an Israeli smart city company on commercial agreements with entities in three different continents, and also acted for a fintech company in relation to a collaboration agreement with one of the world's leading financial services groups. Also recommended is Stephen Barak Rozen, who acts for technology incubators including MindUP and Nielsen Innovate. The hi-tech group was strengthened by the arrivals of Ariel Frank and Chagit Pedael Levin, both of whom had previously run their own boutique firms.

Goldfarb Seligman & Co. is well known in the Israeli tech space for its involvement in major cross-border investment and M&A transactions. The corporate and technology department is headed by Sharon Gazit, who has assisted multiple prominent Asian investment firms with inbound transactions involving Israeli growth companies. Additionally, Ashok Chandrasekhar  and Adam Klein acted for Marlin Equity Partners in relation to its acquisition of Israeli cybersecurity company TopSpin Security. Chandrasekhar is also assisting an international technology company with an acquisition in the cloud technology space. Another key figure in the corporate team is Aaron Lampert, who advised Plarium Global, a leading Israeli social gaming developer, on its $500m acquisition by ASX100-listed Aristocrat Leisure. Also of note, Dubi Zoltak is assisting a multinational with the establishment of an innovation centre. In addition to the firm's impressive transactional work, Gazit and Chandrasekhar provide ongoing advice to dozens of start-up companies in various stages of development.

Gross, Kleinhendler, Hodak, Halevy, Greenberg, Shenhav & Co. has 'a unique place in the Israeli tech industry' and fields 'top-notch professionals in securities, M&A, venture capital fund formation, and privacy'. It further strengthened its hi-tech capabilities in 2018 via its merger with Shenhav & Co, which brought to the team Ayal Shenhav, who has considerable experience acting for venture capital funds across the full range of formation and investment activities. Another key contact in the team is Amir Raz, whom clients single out for his 'tremendously valuable working relationships with funds, companies and other lawyers throughout the industry'. Raz assisted LendBuzz with a debt and equity financing transaction with a consortium of hedge funds and private equity funds, totalling over $62m. Also recommended is Richard Mann, who acted for InSightec in relation to a $150m Series E financing round, and also advised Nasdaq-listed B. Riley Financial on its $143m acquisition of magicJack VocalTec. Also recommended are Chen Manzur and Shmulik Atias.

Bringing together expertise in IP, data and privacy law, M&A, securities and cross-border investment transactions, boutique hi-tech firm H-F & Co. is consistently engaged by some of the market's leading lights, from multinational investors and acquirers to promising and often high-profile Israeli growth companies. Headed by firm founder Nitzan Hirsch-Falk, the team has acted for five Israeli companies in relation to their acquisitions by Google. Further, Adi Gillat provides Google with ongoing data protection and privacy advice. Of particular note in 2017, Maor Levran acted for Argus Cyber Security in relation to its $430m acquisition by Germany's Continental, which marked the year's largest cyber sector transaction. On the acquirer side, Hirsch-Falk advised LogMeIn on its acquisition of NanoRep, which marked the Nasdaq-listed client's first-ever acquisition in Israel. The team has also advised a litany of prominent Israeli start-ups on various rounds of financing transactions with domestic and international investors; among the team's key domestic clients are Moovit App Global, TytoCare, Airobotics, and Kaiima Bio-Argitech. Other key contacts include Ora Templeman and Yuval Oren.

By some clients' estimation, the hi-tech department at Herzog Fox & Neeman is 'one of the best, if not the very best, in Israel'. The team has particular expertise in advising the world's leading technology groups on high-profile acquisition and investment transactions involving Israeli hi-tech companies. Indeed, the lawyers' 'cumulative experience provides a fruitful ground for new ideas and alternatives to blossom, which is an invaluable quality when dealing with young companies'. Key figures in the team include Dana Zur Neumann and Janet Levy Pahima, the latter of whom acted for Microsoft in two Israel-facing acquisitions, one in the cyber sector and another in the field of cloud technology. Similarly, department head Hanan Haviv advised Continental AG on its high-value acquisition of Argus Cyber Security, which was the company's first-ever acquisition in Israel. Also of note, Yair Geva acted for Entera Bio in relation to its $120m IPO, which marked one of the only Israel IPOs to be completed on Nasdaq in 2018. Other well-known clients include Alibaba, Aristocrat Leisure and Nike, though the team also acts for a litany of Israeli start-ups in the fields of fintech, cybersecurity, cloud computing, 'agtech', and e-commerce. Dan Sharot is also recommended.

With 'deep expertise in every legal practice that's relevant to hi-tech', it is perhaps no surprise that the team at Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal Law Offices is 'involved on one side or the other of almost every major transaction' in the sector. Acting for venture capital investors, well-known technology groups, and Israeli start-ups and growth companies, the firm has a range of notable complementary expertise in areas such as international securities, fund formation and management, cross-border taxation, employment, and litigation. In 2017-2018, the team advised over 20 early-stage companies on seed round and A round financing transactions totalling more than $100m; while on the investor side, the department acted in over 200 financing rounds with an aggregate value of more than $1bn. In particular, on the company side, Adv Dan Shamgar and Koevary Simcha advised eToro Group in a $100m equity financing transaction led by China Minsheng Financial Holding Corporation, and Adv Dan Geva advised Amdocs on its acquisition of Ubiquity. The team also has expertise in ICO deals, where Adv Mike Rimon was recently involved in one of the most significant transactions in the industry; Rimon was engaged by Telegram Messenger in relation to its reported $1bn ICO, which drew an impressive $850m at initial offering, after originally being planned for $600m. Also recommended are Adv Alon Sahar, Adv Itay Frishman, and Assaf Naveh.

Naschitz, Brandes, Amir & Co. has considerable strengths in funds investment, securities law and M&A, which it brings together to advise some of the country's most successful growth companies on high-profile and often cross-border transactions. In a standout mandate, Arnon Sambruski advised MeMed Diagnostics on its $70m financing round involving a number of prominent venture capital and institutional investors; the team also acted for the client in negotiations with the US Department of Defense concerning a unique development contract. Additionally, Einat Rosu acted for Hola Networks in relation to the $200m acquisition of control in the company by UK private equity firm EMK Capital. On the acquirer side, Tuvia Geffen advised Wix.com on its $36m acquisition of US-based DeviantArt. Further, Anat Igner advised China-based Luenmei Quantum on its investment in and joint venture with Mantis Vision, which develops 3D photography technology. The team is also engaged by a number of prominent venture capital funds. Other key figures in the team include Noga Devecseri Spira, Tal Eliasaf, and Gil Brandes.

Shibolet & Co. with Raved, Magriso, Benkel & Co.  handles significant investment and M&A transactions in the hi-tech sector, where it has particular expertise in fintech, cryptocurrencies, cyber law, AI, and autonomous vehicles. On the company side, department head Lior Aviram and Vered Horesh advised Lear Corporation on its $70m of Israel's EXO Technologies, which is involved in high-accuracy GPS tracking for connected vehicle applications. Further, Amir Iliescu acted for GameFly in relation to the acquisition by Electronic Arts of its cloud gaming and streaming business. Acting on the investor side, Iliescu also assisted CVC Growth with its $100m investment into Israeli cybersecurity company SkyBox. In the cryptocurrency space, the team's clients include Bancor. Also of note, the department has considerable experience working with innovation hubs and technology accelerators. One notable accelerator client is Technion DRIVE Accelerator, which focuses on facilitating seed stage growth and investment; the team is also engaged by accelerators in the fields of fintech, autonomous vehicles, and maritime technology. Other key contacts include Einat Weidberg and Limor Peled.

Yigal Arnon & Co has developed an impressive reputation in the hi-tech market, where it advises clients ranging from Israeli start-ups to multinational giants on high-profile M&A and investment transactions. One key figure in the department is Barry Levenfeld, who advised Mexichem on the widely publicised $1.5bn acquisition of control in the Israeli drip irrigation technology company Netafim. Additionally, Levenfeld and Ben Sandler acted for IBM Corporation in relation to its acquisition of Israeli start-up Cloudigo. The team also has expertise acting on the side of the start-ups. David Schapiro and Eliran Furman advised Magicjack Vocaltec on the $143m acquisition by Nasdaq-listed B. Riley Financial of the client's entire share capital. Similarly, Barak Platt and Ezra Gross acted for Zooz Mobile, an Israeli e-payment company, in relation to its acquisition by PayU Global. The team has also handled significant M&A deals for Houzz, SteadyMed, and Electronic Arts.

Erdinast, Ben Nathan, Toledano & Co. is 'a great firm for complex transactions that pull in different practice areas and jurisdictions'. With a wealth of experience in cross-border investment and M&A deals, the firm's 'primary strength is perhaps its international reach'. Doni Toledano and hi-tech practice head Roy Caner acted for an Israeli company with portfolio companies in a number of global jurisdictions in relation to a share transaction with a US private equity fund. Another contact in the team is Shay Dayan, who acted for Arbe Robotics in relation to multiple early stage financing rounds with active venture capital investors, including Canaan Partners, iAngels, and OG Tech Ventures. The team also has expertise in advising Israeli R&D subsidiaries of international companies on transactions and ongoing operations in Israel. Lior Oren and Viva Gayer are also recommended.

The service provided at Fischer Behar Chen Well Orion & Co is 'very simply above and beyond legal practice'; at all stages, 'the lawyers are deal makers, not deal breakers'. Jointly headed by Raz Tepper and Eran Yaniv, the firm has an established track record of taking Israeli companies from the very earliest stages through international expansion processes to eventual exits. In one example, Yaniv and Sharon Rosen advised Fiverr - a client the firm has acted for since its formation - on the acquisition of the entire share capital of Delaware company AND CO Ventures. Ronald Lehmann assisted Servotronix Motion Control with the establishment of a strategic alliance with China's Midea Group, a Fortune 500 consumer appliances company. The team is also active on the investor side, where Tepper has advised Rainbow Medical and OrbiMed Israel Partners on a number of investments in the medtech sector.

Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer Baratz's tech sector strengths include both company- and investor-side work, which sees the firm involved in major cross-border commercial agreements, investment deals, fund formation, and M&A. Atir Jaffe is the firm's key contact for funds and investment work; he recently advised 2B Angels on a Series D investment in Yotpo in a financing round totalling $51m. On the company side, Guy Lachmann acted for Rookout in a Series A financing round led by TLV Partners VC, and has also handled various financing transactions for cyber companies Convexum and Unbotify. Also of note, Hili Rashkovan assisted Phinergy with a $128m joint venture with Yunnan Aluminum, and also advised the client on an additional $73m licensing deal with a separate Chinese company. Other major investor clients include AP Capital Partners Fund, Amoon Ventures, while company side clients include fintech company Nayax and Algaennovation, which develops technology for sustainable indoor microalgae cultivation.

Raz, Dlugin & Co. Law Offices is well known in the hi-tech space for its work on behalf of one of Israel's most successful start-ups, Playtika. Department head Rafi Raz has acted for the company since its formation in 2010, and has since taken it through two major acquisitions as well as a litany of commercial agreements and financing transactions. In 2017-2018, Raz was involved in five M&A transactions for Playtika. Additionally, the team has handled high-value cross-border M&A, investment and securities transactions for Israeli start-ups in the fields of software, biotech and pharmaceuticals, entertainment, and fintech. In a recent matter, Raz and Ran Dlugin acted for the shareholders of an e-commerce company in relation to a high-value M&A transaction with an international fund. The team also has experience in blockchain and is assisting a client with the preparation of an ICO.

'Hungry for success and fully committed to the goals of its clients', Tadmor Levy & Co. is instructed primarily by early stage start-ups, which it advises on investment transactions and out-license agreements as well as all ongoing corporate matters necessary for business expansion. Headed by Elie Sprung, the team has handled a number of seed and Series A financing rounds for companies in a range of technological fields, such as healthcare and medical devices, autonomous vehicles, fintech, cloud computing, and blockchain; Memic Innovative Surgery, Kindite, and City Transformer are among the team's company-side clients. Also of note, the team has experience acting for technology incubators and accelerators. Sprung provides ongoing advice to DRIVE Accelerator in relation to its Fast Lanes programme, and is also engaged by one of Israel's 20 state-sponsored technology incubators, Incentive Incubator. Other key contacts include Yaniv Aronowich and Ophir Nave.

The team at¬†AYR ‚Äď Amar Reiter Jeanne Shochatovitch & Co¬†has experience in M&A and investment transactions in the tech sector, and also advises Israeli IT and communications companies on commercial agreements, regulatory compliance, and ongoing operational issues. A key figure in the team is¬†Nir Oren, who advised two companies on a multimillion-dollar business sale transaction with a US-based software company, and also acted as Israeli counsel to Rosetta Genomics in relation to its reverse triangular merger with Genoptix. Similarly, Assaf Lapid¬†acted for an international corporation in relation to an acquisition in Israel, and also advised an Israeli biomed company on an early-stage investment transaction. Also of note,¬†Eyal Roy Sage¬†provides ongoing advice to Microsoft Azure Accelerator TLV. The team was significantly strengthened in 2019 by the hire of¬†Daniel Chinn, who joined from¬†Tulchinsky Stern Marciano Cohen Levitski & Co..

The team at Epstein Rosenblum Maoz (ERM) has experience acting for growth companies and domestic and international investors, and has been involved in a number of impressive investment and exit transactions in 2017-2018. In particular, Natalie Noy acted for the founders of Fireglass in relation to its $250m acquisition by Nasdaq-listed Symantec Corporation, and also advised StoreSmarts on its acquisition by US-based Retail IQ, the latter of which marked the first major exit transaction of 2018. In the financing space, Nimrod Rosenblum assisted Karamba Security with two financing transactions, including a $12m Series B investment round involving investors such as YL Ventures. Investor-side highlights included Simon Marks acting for a well-known angel investor in relation to an early-stage investment transaction. Additionally, Roni Abelski acted for innogy in relation to its investments in several early-stage companies. Abelski also handles commercial agreements and ongoing commercial matters for Mercedes Benz Research and Development Tel Aviv.

Clients of FWMK (Furth, Wilensky, Mizrachi, Knaani) have consistently rated the team's 'exceptional client service' and 'depth of industry knowledge'. Indeed, more than one client reports that they are 'much more than just legal advisers; the lawyers are also trusted partners, and this quality is very important' for growth companies. In a standout matter, Erez Mizrachi, Itai Farkash and Inbal Sustiel acted for SQream Technologies in relation to a strategic collaboration agreement with the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group. The trio also assisted SQream with a Series B financing round led by Alibaba, which raised over $26m. Further, the team has handled various rounds of financing transactions for Israeli companies such as OwnBackup, Morphisec Information Security and Innovid, while investor-side clients include Joy Ventures and Vertex IV Fund.

Gornitzky & Co. fields 'a very experienced hi-tech team', which has strengths across the gamut of corporate and securities transactions, international taxation, commercial agreements, finance, and tech sector regulation. The department is jointly headed by Daniel Marcus and Shlomo Landress, the latter of whom is singled out for his 'pleasant client-friendly demeanour' and 'ability to provide creative business-oriented solutions to get deals closed'. Landress is acting for an Israeli growth company in relation to its planned offering on a foreign exchange, while Marcus advised an early-stage company in the field of AI on a seed financing round, having also assisted the company with the process of incorporation. Also recommended is Oded Uni, who provides ongoing advice to a fintech accelerator. In addition, Uni has acted for a medical supply company in a number of cross-border deals, including an asset acquisition involving assets based in Canada, the US and France.

Horn & Co has particular expertise in the healthcare industry, and is recognised by its peers as 'a strong operator' in the country's hi-tech space. Department head Yuval Horn is active on the company and investor side; he handles fund formation and investment transactions for Pontifax VC, which is perhaps Israel's leading venture capital fund in the field of life sciences. Further, Horn and Paz Abercohen acted for Ioptima and the company's shareholders in relation to the acquisition of the company by a Chinese life sciences corporation for approximately $50m. Outside of the healthcare and life sciences industry, the team is advising a fintech company in conjunction with a US law firm on the establishment of an exchange for blockchain assets.

Katzenell Dimant has an established track record acting for successful start-up companies in a range of technological fields. Einat Katzenell, who is 'one of the hi-tech sector's leading attorneys', acted for Cyber Secdo (a company she has acted for since its inception) in relation to its acquisition by Palo Alto Networks in May 2018. Katzenell has also handled numerous financing transactions, commercial agreements and ongoing operational issues for clients including Track 160 and eyeSight mobile Technologies, both of which the firm has been advising since inception. Further, the team advises the technology transfer arms of Holon Institute of Technology on all regulatory and commercial issues associated with its R&D activity. Another contact in the department is Ran Dimant, who is engaged by a market-leading domestic crowdfunding platform and also acts for the tech transfer arm of one of Israel's leading universities.

M. Firon & Co Advocates and Notaries has been engaged by Israeli companies as well as a variety of domestic and international investors in investment transactions, M&A deals and commercial agreements in the hi-tech sector. Key figures in the team include Jacob Sarov and Jacob Enoch, the latter of whom has experience in the field of cryptocurrency, where he is advising an Israeli IT company on an proposed joint venture with a prominent blockchain company involving the use of automating and standardising international trade. Also on the company side, Shirley Dahan advises Biop Medical on ongoing investment transactions, and on the investor side the team is acting for Connecticut Innovations in relation to its investment in Dia Imaging Analysis. The team has also handled a multitude of early-stage financing transactions for Israeli start-ups in a range of sectors. Gail Etzion heads the hi-tech practice.

The team at S. Horowitz & Co is engaged by mature technology companies and growth companies in a range of technological fields. The department is headed by Mordehay (Moti) Malca, who handles a full range of commercial, investment and regulatory matters for Final Group, which specialises in the development of trading algorithm technologies. Malca also assisted Medial Research Group with the commencement of a $30m financing deal, which included US-Israeli and Hong Kong-based investors. Acting on the investor side, Keith Shaw advised Soros Fund Management, as lead investor, on a financing transaction with fintech start-up Behalf.

Tulchinsky Stern Marciano Cohen Levitski & Co.¬†is engaged by several very promising start-up companies and has been involved in a number of significant transactions in 2017-2018. Of particular note, the team acted for Lemonade in a $120m investment round, which was led by SoftBank and was one of Israel's largest investment rounds of the year. Additionally,¬†Alon Tabak-Aviram¬†acted for NextNine in relation to its $40m acquisition by an affiliate of Honeywell. Other start-up clients include Nexar, Optimove, and Mobile ODT. Moreover, the team has experience advising mature technology companies on acquisitions in Israel. In this context, the group acted for ADVA Optical Networking in relation to its $60m acquisition of MRV Communications. Major investor clients include Jerusalem Venture Partners and Aleph VC.¬†David Cohen¬†and¬†Uriel Barak¬†are additional contacts.¬†Daniel Chinn¬†left the firm for¬†AYR ‚Äď Amar Reiter Jeanne Shochatovitch & Co¬†in 2019.

Zysman, Aharoni, Gayer & Co (ZAG-S&W) is 'a firm that knows what start-ups need and is able to provide solutions'. Given the firm's connections abroad, the Tel Aviv team is well placed to advise Israeli growth companies on investment deals with US and Asian investors. Recently, Itamar Mei-Zahav advised V-Wave on a $70m financing round, and Mor Limanovich acted for Ossio in two financing rounds with US investors. Limanovich has also handled investment rounds for Biolojic Design, NSLcomm, and Shookit. The team also has experience acting for investors, including clients such as Tal Capital Group. Eran Ben-Dor is another contact in the department.

Barnea Jaffa Lande & Co. advises Israeli start-ups, venture capital and corporate investors, and mature technology companies on a wide range of issues affecting the tech sector, including investment and acquisition activity, privacy and data protection, and commercial agreements. The key figure in the hi-tech practice is Michael Barnea, who provides ongoing advice to TAU Ventures; Barnea recently assisted the client with the establishment of a new Israeli start-up accelerator in conjunction with the Israel Security Authority. Barnea also acts for the development arm of a major multinational corporate in relation to its R&D and investment activity in Israel. Also of note, Yuval Lazi advises Cellebrite on ongoing commercial issues with regards to its international activity, and also advised the client on the sale of its Mobile Life Cycle assets to a US-based private equity fund.

BFP & Co Attorneys & Notary is a specialist firm specialising in IP commercialisation, venture capital formation and management, and cross-border investment transactions in the hi-tech space. Key figures in the practice group include Haleli Barath, Nora Floom and Avihai Schieber, who have acted for Israeli growth companies in investment rounds with domestic and international investors based in the US and East Asia.

Glusman & Co. has experience acting for Israeli start-ups in every stage of development from incorporation and seed financing to late-stage investment work and M&A. Key figures in the team include Noam Gavish and IP specialist Miriam Hackmey, who have acted for companies in a huge variety of technological fields, including cloud computing, fintech, communications, cybersecurity, e-commerce and ad-tech, nano materials, and healthcare.

Hamburger Evron & Co. Law Offices & Notaries handles a range of contentious and non-contentious work for promising Israeli start-ups in various stages of growth. Department head Yaron Sobol has advised UroGen Pharma on a number of matters to expand its activity, which recently included the commencement of a phase-III clinical trial and a highly publicised IPO on Nasdaq. Also recommended is Steven Berelowitz, who advised Moon Active on licensing agreements with multinational corporates, including Viber and DreamSky. Berelowitz has also assisted Bizzabo and Safer Place with multiple financing rounds involving international investors. On the investor side, the team assisted Ganot Capital with several investment rounds in addition to an M&A transaction wherein the client sold Kyma Medical to Zoll Technologies.

S. Friedman & Co. Advocates & Notaries has strengths in corporate and securities transactions, and has developed a reputation in the hi-tech sector, where it acts for start-ups, investors and an academic IP commercialisation arm. The hi-tech practice is led by Tal Tirosh, who has experience in complex M&A, which she fostered during her time working at various US law firms. Tirosh has experience acting for Israeli start-ups in crowd funding transactions, and has also advised clients including TankU, Netwton VR, and Seatback Ergo on seed financing transactions. Additionally, Oren Sharon acted for Ballastmarine in a Series A financing deal and is now advising the client on the potential establishment of a joint venture with a Chinese partner. Sarit Molcho and Arnon Mainfeld are key contacts in the corporate and securities department.

Sharir, Shiv & Co.  advises active venture capital investors and Israeli start-ups across the spectrum of commercial, investment, and operational matters in the tech sector. Jointly headed by Galai Sharir and Yoram Shiv, the firm acts for growth-companies in a wide range of industries, including fintech, cloud computing, 'agtech', cybersecurity, mobile technology and blockchain. Moreover, Alex Berman has been engaged by an international venture capital fund and multiple Israeli investors, and also recently assisted with the establishment of a crowdfunding platform.

Yaacov Salomon, Lipsch√ľtz & Co.¬†provides a 'hands-on, client-friendly service' to Israeli tech companies in relation to establishment, funding and ongoing commercial operations. The hi-tech department is headed by¬†Narda Ben Zvi, who advised BriefCam on the acquisition by Canon of 100% equity in the client company. Further, Ben Zvi and¬†David Schottenfels¬†provide ongoing advice to clients such as Nasdaq-listed Top Image Systems. Other key clients include Levitection, Massivit 3D Printing Technologies and Curapipe Systems.¬†Lori Almouli-Confino¬†left the firm for¬†Efrati, Galili, Confino & Co¬†in 2019.

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