The head of the Ashdod Port innovation system, Roi Abrahami, participated in the panel “Not only cyber and fintech: the new technologies that are disrupting old industries” as part of the Globes startup conference held at Zappa Tel Aviv, alongside Batal Valentine-Blaish, CBO in the company BeeHeroRonit Eshel, Head of the Advanced Production Division in the Growth Division at the Innovation Authority, and Kikir Sodri, CTO and co-founder of Bildots. The panel was moderated by the newspaper’s science reporter, Gali Weinerv.
During the panel, Abrahami explained that the Corona period revealed many failures that exist in the supply chain and international trade, and emphasized the need for the shipping world to integrate advanced technologies. “The Port of Ashdod is changing its face from an industrialized and traditional entity to an innovative and advanced company that bridges the gap that has arisen between high-tech and the world of shipping. There is a narrowing gap between the world of high-tech and the world of shipping, and we must work with all our might in order to close it completely. Therefore, we established an acceleration program for start-ups that focuses on the maritime industry.’
Abrahami also added that “promoting innovation and technology is part of an international transformation. As part of the collaborations created by the port, Israeli startups, in a variety of fields, can develop their technological and business opportunities also overseas, at the port of Barcelona, the port of New Jersey, and other major ports. The development of an international technological port environment is in the interest of all of us: the Port of Ashdod, the State of Israel and the entire global trade system.’
With reference to the crisis currently affecting the international market in general and the world of innovation in particular, Abrahami noted that “our activity lowers the risk for investors, because the port is one-stop-shop. We are also a beta site, a customer, and an investor, and we are also finding more customers and investors in the world.’
When asked to comment on the place of workers in traditional industry, Abrahami emphasized: “Our workers are an asset. The best and most correct way to promote innovation in a traditional industry is by using the knowledge of the employees, since they are the main source of authority when it comes to the needs of the maritime industry, they are the address for understanding what can work and what cannot work. The product created through the synergy between the technology and the knowledge of the employees is a solution to the problems that exist in every other port in the world.’