Despite its high profile, Israel is a small country, with a mere 7.2m inhabitants. In terms of area, Israel is only the world’s 152nd largest country. But, say Michael Factor and Jeremy Ben David, it remains an essential patent jurisdiction.
Although there appears to be little justification for registering patents in Israel in terms of market size, if the strength of Israel’s economy is considered, and its trading status with regards to the US, Europe and the Far East, it becomes clear that filing patent applications in Israel should be part of any international IP strategy.
Two recent publications—The Israel Test, by George Gilder and Start-up Nation: The Story of Israel’s Economic Miracle, by Dan Senor and Saul Singer—make a case for Israel being the world leader in terms of research, development and entrepreneurship. Many of the largest and most successful multinational corporations have found themselves—sometimes contrary to their preexisting policies—either setting up development centres in Israel or purchasing Israeli companies.
For example, Intel set up its first and flagship R&D centre in Israel in the 1970s and is now active in four different Israeli cities. In addition to R&D, much of the company’s chip manufacturing takes place in Israel. Warren Buffett bought the Israeli company Isscar, which makes hard-metal cutting tools, for a multi-billion dollar sum during the second Lebanon war in 2006, despite the Galilean company being in the war zone.
Israel, patent jurisdiction