Back to the complete issue
Sunday, 5 February 2017

How Israeli tech companies do business in Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries

Israel’s security and tech firms do business in Saudi Arabia … just very quietly: In the relationship between Israeli tech firms and Saudi Arabia, good agreements and plausible deniability make “good neighbors,” Jonathan Ferziger and Peter Waldman write for Bloomberg Businessweek. They look at some of the cases where Israeli companies interacted with Arab governments, including the one of Shmuel Bar, whose company was approached by “someone from the upper echelons of power in Saudi Arabia” to use its Palantir-like technology to ferret out Saudi jihadis. The caveat was that he was asked to create a pass-through company to hide his own’s Israeli identity. “For now, ‘everything has to be under the radar,’ says Shabtai Shavit, the former Mossad chief. Another company’s technology, AGT International’s, came in handy in the UAE as it processed video and still images captured at the scenes of the stabbing of an American teacher in Abu Dhabi and identified the suspect within a day — who had also planted a bomb at a home there, which was diffused. “What always surprises me is how much money and technology and equipment flows between mortal enemies on the political stage,” one engineer says.

Enterprise is a daily publication of Enterprise Ventures LLC, an Egyptian limited liability company (commercial register 83594), and a subsidiary of Inktank Communications. Summaries are intended for guidance only and are provided on an as-is basis; kindly refer to the source article in its original language prior to undertaking any action. Neither Enterprise Ventures nor its staff assume any responsibility or liability for the accuracy of the information contained in this publication, whether in the form of summaries or analysis. © 2022 Enterprise Ventures LLC.

Enterprise is available without charge thanks to the generous support of EFG Hermes (tax ID: 200-178-385), the leading financial services corporation in frontier emerging markets; SODIC (tax ID: 212-168-002), a leading Egyptian real estate developer; SomaBay (tax ID: 204-903-300), our Red Sea holiday partner; Infinity (tax ID: 474-939-359), the ultimate way to power cities, industries, and homes directly from nature right here in Egypt; CIRA (tax ID: 200-069-608), the leading providers of K-12 and higher level education in Egypt; Orascom Construction (tax ID: 229-988-806), the leading construction and engineering company building infrastructure in Egypt and abroad; Moharram & Partners (tax ID: 616-112-459), the leading public policy and government affairs partner; Palm Hills Developments (tax ID: 432-737-014), a leading developer of commercial and residential properties; Etisalat Misr (tax ID: 235-071-579), the leading telecoms provider in Egypt; and Industrial Development Group (IDG) (tax ID:266-965-253), the leading builder of industrial parks in Egypt.