The Israel-U.S. Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Foundation has approved $7.5 million in funding for nine new projects between U.S. and Israeli companies. In addition to the grants from BIRD, the projects will access private-sector funding, boosting the total value of all projects to $21 million.
The BIRD Foundation promotes collaboration between U.S. and Israeli companies in various technological fields for the purpose of joint product development. In addition to providing conditional grants of up to $1 million for approved projects, the foundation assists by working with companies to identify potential strategic partners and facilitate introductions.
Projects submitted to the BIRD Foundation are reviewed by evaluators appointed by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and by the Office of the Chief Scientist (OCS) at Israel’s Ministry of Economy and Industry.
The nine projects approved by the board of governors are in addition to the 926 projects which the BIRD Foundation has approved for funding during its 38 year history. To date, BIRD’s total investment in joint projects has been more than $300 million, helping to generate direct and indirect sales of more than $10 billion.
Dr. Phillip Singerman, associate director for innovation and industry services at the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and co-chairman of BIRD’s board of governors, said, “We are delighted that the BIRD Foundation attracts high-quality companies in the U.S. and Israel to cooperate and participate in the program. I’m especially satisfied to see small and medium U.S. companies from all across the U.S. cooperating with Israel companies, thanks to BIRD's support.”
Dr. Eitan Yudilevich, executive director of the BIRD Foundation, said, “Technological cooperation with Israeli companies is becoming a growing trend in the U.S. where, in today’s competitive global economy, companies are seeking out innovation and talent. BIRD works to actively promote such cooperation through our activities and financial support.”
The deadline for submission of executive summaries for the next BIRD cycle is March 9. Approval of projects will take place in June.
The BIRD Foundation works to encourage and facilitate cooperation between U.S. and Israeli companies in a wide range of technology sectors and offers funding to selected projects. BIRD has approved more than 900 projects over its 38-year history.
The foundation supports projects without receiving any equity or intellectual property rights in the participating companies or in the project itself. BIRD funding is repaid as royalties from sales of technology products that were commercialized as a result of BIRD support. The foundation provides support of up to 50% of a project’s budget, beginning with R&D and ending with the initial stages of sales and marketing. It shares the risk and does not require repayment if the project fails to reach the sales stage.