top of page
  • Writer's pictureSamurai Incubate Israel

Retail tech x Israel

Updated: Sep 23, 2019

In order to help the ecosystem in Japan learn more about Israel and further collaborate with it in the future, we took it upon ourselves to host a bi-monthly “Israel Seminar” in our HQ in Japan. Once every 2 months we invite the ecosystem community in Tokyo to learn more about a selected field of interest! During the event we share some research findings as well as discuss the field and its development together with key players of the ecosystem.

We’ve decided to share some of our findings and further information about the event and speakers in our blog as we believe both ecosystems (Israel and Japan) will find it useful!

Our latest seminar - this time in the Retail tech field - had over 40 participants from all over the Japanese ecosystem, who were looking to learn further about Israeli technology in the field of Retail.

The Speakers
Left to right: Toshihide Tamura, Sayaka Saeki, Shirley Binder

Toshihide Tamura | President @ ZAICO Corporation

Developed a Cloud Inventory Management Software called Zaco, which was titled number 1 in inventory management SaaS in Japan. graduated from Tokyo Institute of Technology.

Sayaka Saeki | Samurai Incubate Inc

Joined the Marui group in 2006 and has had experience in the Retail Business: buyers, planning, e-commerce, marketing and more. Was in charge of the business trend surveys in China, America and more. Joined Samurai Incubate on May 2019, where she is now part of the investment team and promotes open innovation.

Shirley Binder | Head of IL operations @ Samurai Incubate Israel

Joined Samurai Incubate Inc. during 2016 and operates as the Senior Manager at Samurai's Israeli branch. She specializes in hi-tech, venture capital, corporate and commercial laws. Shirley is accompanying the startups during their growth, from the idea stage, through the incorporation and the company's operations and until the desired exit. Shirley has a bachelor degree in law (LL.B) and she is a certified lawyer and a member of the Israeli Bar Association. 

Retail in Israel

“In the $25 trillion retail industry, Israel is becoming the No. 1 hub for very deep technologies applied to retail. . . Managers from Walmart, Tesco, Carrefour, H&M, Best Buy and others have visited Israel in the past two years and are collaborating with Israeli start-ups, and we expect this trend to continue and retailers worldwide will establish innovative activities in Israel in the form of partnerships, investments or acquisitions.”

- Ilan Leiferman, Managing Director of The Shelf

Israel has the highest density of startups and thus it comes as no surprise that they are at the forefront of emerging technology. Israel’s innovation has translated into immense success in creating retail tech. Currently, there are over 500 active startups in the industry.

Israel’s technology aids retailers to stay ahead of their competition and adapt to new trends. Israel is known for its machine learning and artificial intelligence technology. Vast funding each year, $7.5 billion total, is poured into these sectors for defense reasons, but startups are utilizing the same technologies in the retail industry. Such technologies enable retailers to connect the physical and digital world and to achieve customer recognition in stores. Customer recognition encompasses the ability to track purchasing patterns and access their past behaviors.

Japan & Israeli Retail Technology

Yahoo! Japan | In 2016, Yahoo! Japan invested in Twiggle in its A financing round. Twiggle is an Israeli AI startup company that creates individual consumer profiles.

UNIQLO | UNIQLO visited Israel in 2018 in the search of retail tech startup companies, and has participated in Retail Disrupt (one of the biggest retail tech conferences).

Toshiba | In 2014, Toshiba opened an R&D center in Israel for the purpose of exploring retail tech, with a strong focus on storage systems.

Rakuten | Rakuten traveled to Israel as a part of the delegation led by the Japanese Minister of Economy in 2019. Now Rakuten is looking to expand its investments and collaborations with Israeli companies.

Retail Tech & Samurai Incubate Israel

Samurai is currently looking to invest in Retail tech technologies, as part of our investments in the newly launched 6 fund.

See our terms and apply for an investment here:


bottom of page