A business body which promotes and strengthens trade and investment links between the north west and Israel has appointed a new top team with a mission to create further growth opportunities for companies across the region.
The British-Israel Chamber of Commerce has a broad membership base of businesses and individuals involved in sectors ranging from professional services, banking and finance to property development, retailing, clothing and importers.
Nigel Tobias, an experienced entrepreneur with a background in retailing, property and consulting, has been appointed as executive director of the Altrincham-based chamber.
He has taken over the role from Gideon Klaus, who held the post for 28 years. Gideon has become the B-ICC’s vice-chairman. Brian White continues as chairman.
Robert Levy, executive partner at Manchester-based commercial law firm Kuits, has become the chamber’s president. He has succeeded Nigel Alliance, who has been appointed life-president.
The chamber has also appointed Carmel Berke and Amal Cowan to its committee.
Figures from the Department for Business and Trade show that total trade between Britain and Israel was £7.3bn in the year to March, a rise of 30 per cent. Israel is the UK’s 38th largest trading partner.
In 2022, exports from the north west to Israel totalled £165m and imports were £560m, supporting thousands of jobs in the region.
Per capita, Israel has highest number of start-ups and research and development centres in the world.
Robert said: “There are huge opportunities for the north west business community to develop commercial links with Israel, which is a global centre for technology and innovation.
“In the UK, the north west is a dominant technology and commercial hub, and the
B-ICC exists to strengthen links with Israel to give businesses in our region access to new suppliers and customers, potential investment and joint venture partners.
“Our mission is to champion the north west as an inward investment location for Israeli companies, and to promote Israel as a destination for north west businesses looking to expand overseas or develop partnerships for collaboration.”
Nigel said: “Gideon and Nigel have been synonymous with the B-ICC for many years, and Robert and I are honoured to be given the opportunity to continue their great work and take the chamber forward, while also recognising their achievements by appointing them to new roles with us.
“Their continued involvement, advice and expertise will be important and invaluable to the executive team and the committee.
“The B-ICC is an important voice for the north west community and a wealth of opportunities exist in Israel, in particular in sectors such as fintech, cyber security, agricultural technology, AI, clean tech, health, and research and development.
“With a range of events and programmes featuring prominent speakers in a dynamic and focused business learning and networking environment, we aim to help north west businesses engage with Israeli companies to increase bilateral trade and investment opportunities, while also creating a better understanding of the country and all that it has to offer.”