Saban Capital Group Launches a $100M Venture Capital Fund in Israel

Saban Capital Group (SCG) will launch a $100 venture capital fund in Israel which will be led by Barak Pridor, it was announced today by Adam Chesnoff, President and COO of Saban Capital Group.

The fund, Saban Ventures (SV) will focus on the Digital Media space, including Mobile, Social, Entertainment, Information, eCommerce and marketplaces, Cloud, Financial Technologies and SaaS (Software as a Service). In addition, Saban Ventures will work closely with SCG’s other venture capital activity on a global basis including investments in the US and Asia. The fund which will initially manage $100m will focus on identifying investment opportunities in companies in stages that range from post-seed to growth.

Saban Ventures will be funded by Saban Capital Group, which is owned by businessman Haim Saban. SCG based in Los Angeles and specializes primarily in the global media, entertainment, and communication industries. The firm currently makes both controlling and minority investments in public and private companies and plays an active role in its portfolio companies. SCG’s current private equity investments include: Saban Brands LLC (an affiliate of SCG formed to acquire, manage and license entertainment properties and consumer brands across media and consumer platforms); Univision (the premier Spanish-language media company in the US); Celestial Tiger Entertainment (a venture with Lionsgate and Astro, Malaysia’s largest pay TV platform); MNC (Indonesia’s largest and only vertically-integrated media company); and Partner Communications (a leading telecommunications company in Israel). Some of the company’s notable Israeli technology investments include Nyotron, IronSource, Everysight and Playbuzz. SCG also actively manages a globally diversified portfolio of investments across public equities, credit, alternative investments, and real property assets.

Barak Pridor, a seasoned media and technology executive with over 20 years of diverse experience will lead the fund and spearhead the efforts in sourcing and monitoring investment opportunities in Israel. Barak’s achievements include building early stage companies into market leader and serving in senior leadership roles within a large, global corporations. Early in his career, he served as a senior executive at Thomson Reuters (NYSE: TRI) and was CEO of Clearforest, which was acquired by TRI. Barak’s additional experience includes venture capital investment and various executive and non-executive board positions. As part of his commitment to the Israeli tech scene, Barak co-founded SOSA, a hub for entrepreneurs, service providers and executives involved in Israel’s start-up scene.

Barak Pridor: “This is a unique Venture Capital fund in that it doubles as a strategic investor, with its vast, global footprint and elaborate network. We are looking for the very best entrepreneurs in Digital Media, Cloud technologies, Fintech and SaaS. The Saban brand stands for experience, deep pockets and perseverance, together with the ability to facilitate entry into new markets. My goal will be to target and partner with the most promising Israel related technology startups and help to evolve them into market leaders.”

Adam Chesnoff: “Our various business activities prompted us to become closely familiar with many Israeli entrepreneurs, and made us realize the great value being created by the unique and innovative Israeli tech market. After making a number of local investments in Israel, we have decided to set up a platform, which will facilitate the identification and partnering with top local entrepreneurs, with full access to all of SCG’s global footprint. I am pleased that Barak Pridor has agreed to lead the new fund.”