Glilot Capital: Where We Have Been & Where We Are Heading
With more than 25 years under his belt founding innovative technology companies and investing in these fields, Kobi Samboursky knows what it takes to build a successful startup. We asked Kobi to discuss the success of Glilot Capital Partners over the last ten years and why now was the time to launch their new fund, Glilot+.
What has driven Glilot Capital to be consistently ranked one of the best VCs in the world over the past several years?
The story begins 10 years ago when Arik [Kleinstein] and I launched our seed fund. We knew that we were going to focus on a specific market segment – enterprise software and cybersecurity – given our personal backgrounds and where we saw market potential. Since then, our goal has been to provide hands-on support and added value to help our founders build and scale their businesses. We also introduced new paradigms like profit sharing and a dedicated value-creation team to strengthen founders and ensure their long-term success. We have seen this model work exceptionally well since we started, with at least three unicorns in the making and 10 total exits to date.
What is Glilot+ and why did you decide to launch it now?
Glilot+ is our newest fund for Post-Series A startups in our markets – enterprise software and cybersecurity. We have already been successfully investing in these stages for years, in a more limited capacity, and have had opportunities in the past to expand our offering, but in staying aligned with our vision, we wanted to ensure we were maintaining the success rate of our startups, and not just growing for the sake of growth.
We felt that now was the right time to launch Glilot+ for several reasons. First, the innovation and hi-tech industry in Israel is currently positioned very well. Given the changes in how we manage our lives – both personal and professional – because of the recent pandemic, innovation has become paramount to adjusting to the new normal. Israel houses some of the most inventive startups that have revolutionized cloud, cybersecurity including remote work capabilities, Dev and DevOps and almost every other field, globally.
Second, internally, Glilot Capital is well-positioned to expand. We have grown our operations significantly, from two people six years ago to a full staff today. We have a strong team including Investment, Value Creation, Marketing, and more. Most importantly, Nofar[Amikam] has recently joined the Investing team (as an Investing Partner), which enabled us to add Glilot+ without running the risk of denying resources to our seed fund. Finally, Lior [Litwak] agreed to join to lead Glilot+. Lior brings proven investing and value-add skills, ensuring that we have the best talent to turn Glilot+ into another success story.
Glilot+ enables us to carry forward our vision, by extending our capabilities while staying true to what we do best. In the last decade, we have proven that a focused, value-added investment model can be very successful at early stages, we now aim to prove that a similar model can create tremendous value at later stages as well. As we still focus on the companies from the same fields we will be able to leverage the same expertise and network we have built over 10 years, but now have a dedicated, heavily backed fund to extend them into further stages of growth.
What unique contribution does Glilot make to startup growth?
For us it really comes down to end-to-end support and Value Creation, from strategic guidance to a generation of concrete leads. We have a lot of confidence in the Israeli startups we support. Some people still think that Israeli entrepreneurs are at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts sitting in Silicon Valley. We strongly believe the opposite is true, especially if you provide them with a strong network and dedicated support Isareli founders can match top talent across any geography. At Glilot we know how to spot a big opportunity and leverage our own capabilities.
With respect to value creation, we have built a strong advisory network from various global enterprises to help both young and grown companies. We recognize that companies in all stages always benefit from expert advice, so we connect them with people who have solid relationships with the industry to drive global sales, partnerships and other strategic moves.
We are big believers in technology and specifically in the capabilities of the Israeli ecosystem to create a growing number of big, revolutionary companies. During the last decade, we have already been involved in building a handful of big companies – from seed stage to late stages, with Glilot+ we will have the opportunity to do it at a bigger scale.