March 4, 2013 -
SingTel, along with customer experience systems and services provider Amdocs has launched a development center in Israel, called L!feLabs, through which the telecom will invest in Israeli startups, fund academic and commercial research, and collaborate with incubators and angel investors.
According to the company, it will be focusing primarily on voice and facial recognition, as well as technologies mobile and wireless infrastructure.
The idea behind the center in Israel is to bring promising technology from Israel to Asia, as well to increase its investments in research and development. This is also a part of its recently established global innovation initiative, L!feLabs, to “inspire and enable ideas to become reality.”
“As we move SingTel beyond just communications into becoming a multimedia digital provider, innovation is key to our transformation. Never before have we seen technology and business models changing so rapidly. To stay ahead of the market and anticipate customer needs, we have significantly expanded our investments in digital services that will help our customers discover new services, be informed, entertained or more productive,” Allen Lew, Chief Executive Officer of Group Digital L!fe, SingTel said.
“Through this partnership with Amdocs and SingTel L!feLabs @ Israel, we are embedding ourselves in one of the leading innovation hubs of the world. We are committed to engaging the local innovation community. Our financial investment in Israel will be determined according to the value of projects. In SingTel, we have a corporate venture fund of S$200 million. Part of this fund will also reach Israel.”
The center, as a co-investment between SingTel and Amdocs will be hosted on Amdoc’s Ra’anana campus. This co-investment is the first collaboration in Israel by a service provider from Asia Pacific, and is seen as a gateway for local Israeli startups into the fastest growing region in the world: Asia.
Some notable Israeli biometrics companies have recently been bought by major investors and players in the biometrics space.
Israel-based facial recognition platform provider Face.com was scooped up last year by Facebook, and rumours suggested the price tag on that deal could have been as much as $100 million.