Tech Talk: Yazam Balev

The Jerusalem Center of Technology (JCT-Machon Lev) held a special event to introduce the community to Yazam Balev, an accelerator program geared especially toward the haredi community.

Yishai Fraenkel, the director of the Perceptual Computing Group at Intel, was the keynote speaker, and more than 60 investors from venture-capital funds and senior hi-tech professionals attended the event.

The Yazam Balev Accelerator Program provides haredi entrepreneurs with all the tools needed to develop their ideas from early startups into mature companies, and it links them with potential investors. The program teaches haredi entrepreneurs the first steps for starting a business: how to prepare presentations, plan ahead and establish a proper accounting system.

Mentors offer them advice and ongoing feedback so that they can take their innovative ideas and bring them to fruition.

The program helps participants overcome obstacles, such as a lack of technological background, secular education and social difficulties that other people don’t face.

They manage to do all this while keeping within the framework of a haredi environment.

The event, which was open to the public and the media, featured the following projects:

• An app that helps you plan trips from A to Z, including flights, hotels, car rentals and tours. It also helps you make changes to your itinerary if something goes wrong during your trip.

• A smart grocery-store app that enables shoppers to become their own portable barcode scanner, so that they can scan each product as they put it in the grocery cart.

• An Internet management system that organizes people according to interest groups. The content included on this site is controlled, and each group need only receive the information relevant to them.

• A nationwide app that enables residents to report sanitation, water and safety hazards easily and quickly.

• A site where individuals can post and discuss small real-estate and investment opportunities (up to NIS 100,000).

• A service that significantly helps guards reach their stations on time.

The program helps  participants overcome obstacles such as a lack of technical background, secular education and social difficulties that other people don't face.  (photo credit: nefesh b'nefesh)
The program helps participants overcome obstacles such as a lack of technical background, secular education and social difficulties that other people don’t face. (photo credit: nefesh b’nefesh)