Lamont to Promote Connecticut’s Economic Development During Israel Trip

Governor Ned Lamont will join University of Connecticut acting president Radenka Maric and state business leaders Thursday night on a week-long visit to Israel to promote economic development and trade .

“We’ve been working on this for about two and a half years,” Lamont said Tuesday afternoon after an unrelated event in Hartford. “There have been a lot of elections, a lot of government issues, a lot of COVID issues. I think now is the time to do it. We get to meet all the people who can make a real difference, and I’m going to show them the best of Connecticut because I think we’re going to benefit from it.


The 10-member delegation, including Commissioner David Lehman of the state Department of Economic and Community Development, will meet with key leaders, including Prime Minister Naftali Bennett and President Isaac Herzog, in an effort to strengthen trade and promote contractors. The delegation will also meet with Dr. Salmon Zarka, head of the coronavirus task force at the Israeli Ministry of Health.

“During our time in Israel, we will be spending time with some of the brightest minds in the small business ecosystem,” Lehman said. “We hope to take home best practices on how we can work more closely with Israel to give startups a soft landing when they come to our state.

The trip, which will depart from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York, will include a game of “Venture Clash,” in which six Israeli companies compete in eight-minute elevator pitches to Connecticut Innovations Inc officials. quasi-public strategic venture capital organization, including board chairman Michael Cantor, CEP Matthew McCooe and Lauren Carmody, vice president of marketing and communications.

Others on the trip include Kurt Amend, vice president of defense contractor Raytheon; Michael Bloom, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Connecticut; Dr. Barry Stein, vice president and chief innovation officer at Hartford HealthCare; Michael Kraines, Chief Financial Officer at Digital Currency Group; Professor Daniel Weiner, Vice President of Global Affairs at UConn.

Business development in the pharmaceutical and defense industries will be among the group’s goals, with the goal of promoting Connecticut’s workforce and business environment. The group will visit Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem.

“As part of our global recruiting strategy, we will meet with innovative companies looking to establish a US headquarters in Connecticut,” McCooe said in the release. “Through VentureClash, we not only have the opportunity to connect with promising companies, but we will also expand and strengthen our network of co-investors who will work on future deals with Connecticut Innovations.”

Innovation roundtables are also planned, one of which is expected to be led by Ruth Porat, chief financial officer of Alphabet, Google’s parent company.

“Part of the growth of Connecticut’s innovation ecosystem includes the addition of diverse companies from around the world,” Lamont said in a joint statement with Lehman and McCooe. “Israel continues to lead the way in innovation and has one of the strongest economies in the world to back it up. This is an opportunity for Connecticut to strengthen its ties with Israel and offer these innovative companies an option for any expansion in the United States. I look forward to meeting with these business leaders and government officials to learn how we can strengthen the bond between our two regions.

[email protected] Twitter: @KenDixonCT

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