Konnect, the new Volkswagen Group Campus in Tel Aviv, Israel, has been opened to provide a co-working space for local tech start-ups and to support collaborations. Themes for the work to take place there include connectivity, smart navigation, sensors, simulators, cybersecurity, e-mobility and big data, with a view to pushing forward development of mobility services, autonomous vehicles and specific tech solutions.

Stephanie Reimann, appointed managing director of Konnect, will work with the VW Group’s brands on focused talent-scouting: identifying, supporting and developing proof-of-concept mobility projects. “I look forward to working with the Israeli start-up ecosystem in order to identify cutting-edge technologies for our future mobility solutions,” she said in a statement. “We will invite relevant companies to approach us and form a meaningful partnership with the Volkswagen Group and our strong brands.”

The Volkswagen brand has so far identified 41 local start-ups in Israel with innovative mobility business ideas that it will support, and is running a competition for selected entrepreneurs. They are to present their ideas to a Volkswagen panel who will select a winner to spend six months at the ‘Transparent Factory’ in Dresden, where they will receive professional mentorship and meet Volkswagen development divisions and investors.

-Farah Alkhalisi