Alibaba’s long list of major investments across the globe has expanded further into Israel with an alleged $15 million investment into Jerusalem Venture Partners — the international venture capital firm that focuses on boosting startup companies, particularly cybersecurity-related investments.
Citing an unnamed source, The Wall Street Journal said that Alibaba became the company’s seventh funding partner, but the exact amount was not confirmed with Alibaba. What’s interesting about the investment with Jerusalem Venture Partners is that the company is active in its cybersecurity investments, as WSJ cited CyberArk as one of the companies that the firm helped turn into a billion dollar company. JVP is also said to have invested in online storage and networks, something also of interest to Alibaba as it’s preparing to open an overseas cloud data center in Silicon Valley.
Investing in cybersecurity appears to be the next big thing in the payments/commerce space as PayPal laid out plans to buy CyActive for somewhere between $60 million-$80 million. CyActive is a cybersecurity firm startup funded by Jerusalem Venture Partners. Most recently for PayPal, it has affirmed its cybersecurity plans by providing an update about how the company is protecting its customers from fraudulent emails.
According to the WSJ report, citing figures from Israel’s National Economic Council, the Chinese-Israeli technology investments reached $300 million in 2013 — a number that’s expected to continue growing. Alibaba has also made investments in Israel by injecting capital into Israeli QR code developer Visualead. That deal is said to be so the company can work on the next wave of QR technology, while Alibaba uses the patents and technology from the startup across its business and eCommerce holdings.