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Businesses at Centrallia are speed-dating.
photo by Matthew Ostrove

Dr.Iris Shahar of Ocure has new treatment for anal fissures.
photo by Rhonda Spivak

Dr. Jafar Sabbeh shows how his dental innovation enables bone to grow naturally
photo by Rhonda Spivak

Israeli Start-up Companies in Winnipeg for Centralllia
photo by Rhonda Spivak


Matthew Ostrove



by Matthew Ostrove with files from the Winnipeg Jewish Review, November 2, 2010

Over 500 businesses from all around the globe, including five Israeli start-up companies who have made important medical , dental and business innovations , attended the the first ever Centralia conference on Winnipeg Convention Center  on October 20th.
The conference was designed to provide a forum whereby small companies could meet and discuss how they might be able to form some sort of partnership. Businesses engaged in “speed dating”, being given 14 minutes to meet each other. They looked for business synergy, and assessed prospects of potential partnership with mutual benefits for both.
Shelley Faintuch form the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg and Dr. Henri Rothschild, President of the International Science and Technology Partnerships Canada arranged for five Israeli “incubator” high-tech companies, looking for potential investors and Canadian partners to attend the exciting conference. (I will describe these 5 companies later in this article).
Mariette Mulaire from Anim Canada and Dave Angus of the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce hosted the event. The opening line up featured the energetic music of Papa Mambo. Countries from all over the word attended the event including delegations from Mexico, Belgium, Poland and others who were situated in the International village. Chamber of Commerce’s from Ontario, North Dakota, and of course Manitoba were at the event.
The opening ceremony featured a speech by Mayor Sam Katz promoting Winnipeg and Manitoba as a great place to do business. Gail Asper promoted the city in her speech as a place with a vibrant arts and cultural scene.
At Centrallia, Global Wind Group Inc signed at a manufacturing deal with Electrotherm from India to manufacture their wind mills.  This success story shows that Manitoba has to look globally and develop relationships to weather the storm of recessions coming from the United States.
Israeli Innovation  KICKS BUTT
The first  Israeli company I met,  was Ocure, a company based out of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem which is developing a non invasive treatment for anal fissures, “the disease that is not talked about” and which is a common problem found in over 2.5 million people residing in  the United States.
CEO, Dr Iris Shahar of Ocure told the Winnipeg Jewish Review that that the new Innovation (described in medical terms as a “a sterile semi-occlusive wound dressing.”) is “similar to a tampon” which when placed up your you know where lasts for 24 hours and  accelerates healing, relieves local pain, and dissolves before exiting the body.
That’s why I say that this Israeli innovation “kicks butt!”
The company needs a further $1 million to complete a clinical study and update the device with a chemical injection system. 
Occure is supported by Van Leer Technology Ventures Jerusalem, a leading early stage investment group which focuses on companies with innovative technology.    
Dr. Shahar can be reached at [email protected] 
A Diabetic Watch
MellitorLtd is an Israeli company which is developing a device for diabetics known as a “glucose sensor”. Mellitor’s sensor is implanted for an extended period (similar to a pacemaker) in diabetic patients, and gives a real-time, highly accurate measurement of glucose levels.
Abe Coriet, the chairman of Mellitor told the Winnipeg Jewish Review that the device transmits to a watch, “and the watch tells the person their glucose level.”
Coriat says the company needs to raise $3 million dollars to complete extensive clinical trials of this product. They are looking for investors and strategic partnerships.

Coriat can be reached at [email protected]

This company is the  maker of RF modules used in GPS units and other modules meant to be attached to cargo shipments to track cargo by satellites.   The CEO of the company, Haim Goldberger,  used to work for a large United States company Vishay, which is one of the world’s largest producers of electronic components. Goldberg, who has over 50 patents to his name, said he already has over 100 customers for these products.   I took the small sample Goldberg gave me and  quite by co-incidence  I showed  it to a life science board member who owns a bio-medical company and actually needs  this to track shipments.  I am  awaiting to hear  confirmation of the sale, which hopefully will happen..
Goldberg’s company received $900,000 in seed capital, half from the Israeli Technological Incubator Program and half from a Dutch company. It is now looking to forge commercial and financial alliances with other companies.

Haim Goldberger can be reached at [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 Red dental devices-Joint Venture Between Jews and Arabs
This company is making a dental/surgical device which can be marketed towards an older demographic by implanting a screw like fixture  that enables a patient to grow natural bone to replace a tooth, rather than having to bond it.. As Jafar Sabbeh, an Israeli Arab form Nazareth told the Winnipeg Jewish Review, “we cut the patient’s bone [under the gum line of the tooth]and then the bone grows back naturally” so that  bonding the tooth isn’t necessary.”
 Sabbeh, who graduated with a law degree from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and then obtained an M.B.A. from a London business school, said the prototype is about 1 year and a half away from themarket. RAD is looking for strategic partners in the areas of finance and technological development
While speaking with Sabbeh, about future prospects for peace, I found it most interesting that he told me in his view peaceful relations will come through business relations between Jews and Arabs, not through politicians making promises in order to get re-elected.

Sabbah can be reached at [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Eli Yahalom, CEO of Bond X, told the Winnipeg Jewish Review that his company is developing an environmentally friendly wet strength additive for the paper industry…to be used in liner-board and , tissue. The product is based on activated plant fibers that attribute wet strength to paper while keeping it recyclable.
“Our goal is to improve paper properties while reducing polluting chemicals used today,” Yahalom said. He is looking for partners in all phases of development, including commercial, technological, and industrial.

 Yahalom, can be reached at [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 The Canada-Israel Industrial Research & Development Foundation (CIIRDF)
Les Abelson, Operations Manager for CIIRDF told the Winnipeg Jewish Review that CIIRDF’s purpose is to foster collaboration in research and development between companies in Canada and Israel, with a“ focus on commercialization of new technologies.”
CIIRDF offers a matchmaking service that brings together Canadian and Israeli companies seeking R&D partners and Invests in bilateral R&D initiatives by contributing up to 50 per cent of joint project costs, to a maximum of $800,000.”
Abelson said  that CIIRDF came about shortly before Canada and Israel signed a free trade agreement in 1996, and that the level of mutual trade between the two countries has grown exponentially.

Abelson’s organization is the one that was responsible for bringing the five Israeli start-up companies to Centralia. He said there have been almost 80 projects begun under the terms of CIIRDF. He can be contacted at [email protected] This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

We expect these types of conference to happen every two years says Anim members and David Angus and as more and more companies hear about the tremendous success of this one they will be eager to jump on board for the next one. Way to go to all the Anim staff and all the volunteers who made this successful conference a reality!  Special thanks to Shelley Faintuch of the Jewish Federation of Winnipeg for ensuring that the Israeli companies came to participate in this.
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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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