Our V+ forums host regular meetings across several verticals, that allow executives from our portfolio companies to network and share experiences, best practices and insightful presentations on a variety of topics and challenges faced by growing startups as they strive to build significant companies.
How Startups Should Approach Branding in China – An Overview of the Local Social Media Landscape
When it comes to breaking into the Chinese market, China might as well be a different plant for startup marketers. With an entirely different media and digital landscape, you really need to know what the major platforms are and how they operate to brand your product or company successfully.
In this illuminating session, SPRG Beijing's Arthur R. Hagopian, and Silk Road Group's Lior Varona, shared their insights about how brands - from giants like Google to Israeli tech companies - are cracking the Chinese media challenge.
- Arthur R. Hagopian Senior Director at SPRG Beijing
- Lior Varona Founder & CEO of Silk Road Group
How FinTech Companies Can Successfully Acquire SMBs as Customers
This Viola FinTech Forum meetup was all about how FinTech companies who target SMBs can optimize their customer acquisition efforts. The session (live-streamed on FB) featured 5 terrific speakers, who presented case studies from their own companies and offered their best tips for successfully acquiring SMBs as customers.
NOTE: All presentations were in Hebrew, except for Jonny's which was in English.
- Asi Dayan SMB Marketing Expert, formerly at Fundbox
- Eden Amirav Co-founder & CEO, Lending Express
- Nir Klar Co-founder & CTO, BlueVine
- Jonny Steel VP Marketing, Payoneer
- Jonathan Nimrodi B2B Vertical Lead, Facebook Israel
How Banks Innovate: Insights from Scotiabank, Israel Discount Bank, Citi, Pepper and SundaySky
In our last FinTech Forum – which took place on the eve of International Women’s Day – we hosted an all-female panel on how global and local banks approach the concept of “Fintegration” (how banks team up with FinTech companies).
If you’re a FinTech entrepreneur, you may find the insights from the panel discussion about FinTech innovation valuable, so check out Viola FinTech General Partner Tomer Michaeli's collection of the main takeaways from the event.
- Panel Moderator: Dubie Cunningham Vice President Enterprise Innovation, Digital Banking, Scotiabank
- Yael Waisbourd-Sucary Head of Innovation and Fintech, Discount Bank
- Ornit Shinar Head of Venture Investments Israel, Citi
- Lilach Bar-David Founder & Former CEO, Pepper
- Amrita Jain Head of Mobile Product, SundaySky
Building a Winning Product in FinTech
This meetup featured experts from four of Israel’s coolest FinTech companies, who shared their insights on "How to Build a Winning Product in FinTech".
Click below to check out Viola Ventures Partner Omry Ben David's blog post summarizing the key takeaways from the event.
- Gil Sadis Head of Product @ Lemonade
- Gal Bar Dea VP Products & Services @ Pepper
- Matan Bar CEO @ Payper (former GM @ PayPal Consumer Product)
- Eyal Moldovan GM @ Payoneer
AWS Technical Evangelist Boaz Ziniman presents highlights from AWS re:Invent 2017
Amazon Web Services (AWS) Technical Evangelist Boaz Ziniman presented a highlights from the recent AWS re:Invent 2017 event in Las Vegas, and provided an overview of some of AWS new products. Breakout sessions from the event in Las Vegas are available here.
The annual AWS Summit in Tel Aviv will take place on March 14, 2018.
- Boaz Ziniman AWS Technical Evangelist
World-Class Product Managers
In this V+ Product Forum meetup we hosted Gil Hirsch, ex-CEO of Face.com and until recently Senior Product Manager at Facebook, leading the relaunch of products such as Messenger and Ads Manager and rebuilding the Targeting team.
Gil presented his notion of "world-class product managers" and how they can consistently improve the execution and impact of product-driven companies.
Gil believes that as a whole, the Israeli hi-tech sector isn’t yet calibrated on what product managers can do, what a world-class product manager looks like, and how to build a product org that maximizes impact. He thinks Israeli companies can and should catch up if they seek to improve focus and performance.
Gil also presented the initiative of "Product Bootcamp" he is running with Yuval Samet, currently CEO of Impact Labs and previously CPO & CTO of Klarna in Sweden. The Product Bootcamp is a special program tailored by Gil and Yuval for small groups of product managers, helping to grow them to be more professional and more impactful.
- Gil Hirsch x-CEO of Face.com and until recently Senior Product Manager at Facebook
Organizational Transformation During Global Growth
Aviva Arnon, SVP HR at Payoneer, spoke about global organizational transformation "from startup to grown-up" – focusing on how to manage and lead employees outside of Israel in a fast growing company.
- Aviva Arnon Chief People Officer at Payoneer
Opening shop in China
We featured 2 speakers at this event. The first was Yoni Eyal, GM Asia Pacific at ironSource (a Viola Ventures portfolio company). Yoni spoke about the essentials of opening shop in China, from HR to Marketing and sales and business etiguette. Yoni was followed by Yoav Sade, a Partner at Meitar. Yoav spoke about local regulation and legal challenges facing Israelis who do business in China.
- Yoni Eyal GM Asia Pacific, ironSource
- Yoav Sade Partner at Meitar Liquornik Geva Leshem Tal
The topic of this joint session for both our V+ HR and V+ CMO Forums was Employee Branding. The session featured guest speaker Raz Mitzna who spoke about "practical attitudes for employee branding".
The session also included a presentation by Geektime on Geektime Insider, their new product for employee branding.
- Raz Mitzna Owner at Attract & Retain
How to succeed in a new HR role + The differences between onboarding new employees in the US and Israel
For HR leaders, the “entry” phase to a new company can be extremely challenging, because they need to learn the business, familiarize themselves with the ecosystem, understand the behavioral codes and connect to the people - all this while trying to deliver results.
In the first part of this V+ HR session, Dan Valach, SVP HR at SimilarWeb, shared some insights from his past experience in other companies and specifically SimilarWeb, covering the first few months of an HR manager in a company, what are the key success behaviors for a successful beginning and ongoing influence on the path of the organization, what are the do’s and dont's, etc.
In the second part of the session, Owner and Cross Cultural Consultant at Globaleyes, Margo Paz, talked about comparisons between US and Israeli onboarding and interviewing processes from the candidate and company’s perspectives – based on the cultural differences between the two countries.
- Dan Valach SVP HR at Similarweb
- Margo Paz Owner and Cross Cultural Consultant at Globaleyes
Building Winning Technological Brands
In this session of our V+ CMO Forum, Carmel Yoeli, Co-founder & CEO at Atreo, shared some tips and case studies around building great brands for technology companies. Some of the topics he covered include:
1. Why effective branding always begins with a single, clear USP (unique selling proposition)
2. How a brand’s USP relates to the company’s maturity in the technology market
3. The power of differentiation for tech company branding – SiSense case study
4. How to create great branding for technology companies that are underdogs
5. How to brand tech startups based on new, disruptive technology – Elstifile case study
- Carmel Yoeli Co-founder & CEO, Atreo