Hillel Fuld
Hillel Fuld

Naftali Bennett on how he sold a startup for $145m

  1. It’s been a while since I wrote an article for The Times of Israel, but something spectacular happened to me, and I had to share. First? A little background.
My morning in Tel Aviv with Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak

Over the years, I realized just how powerful content can be on the internet. In fact, I basically built my whole career on the importance of content.

I blogged, I vlogged, I contributed to many sites, and I even became a regular columnist for some huge technology publications. The one thing I didn’t do is podcast. The irony of that fact is that I even had a startup for podcasts but never podcasted myself. Something about the shoemaker being barefoot.

Anyway, when an old college friend, Itamar Weisbrod suggested we start a tech podcast, and after a few nudges, he convinced me. We called it Bootstrap and we hit the ground running.

We then brought on a mutual friend, Guy Malachi to co-host Bootstrap with us. Minus a few hiccups, the podcast was doing very well. We started to climb the charts of the top technology podcasts in Israel, but then, something happened.

Naftali Bennett, Itamar Weisbrod, Guy Malachi, and me.

Naftali Bennett, ya know the former education minister and defense minister, and the man running for prime minister of Israel agreed to come on Bootstrap to tell his story.

How did we even get to Bennett? Well, his cousin Lisa Bennett is a VP at Kaltura, a leading Israeli company in the video space. We are close and she introduced us and told Naftali that he needs to know me. Well, we met, we clicked, and ever since then, we are close.

So when I asked Naftali to come on the podcast, he agreed immediately.

Lisa Bennett, Naftali’s Cousin, and me

So the day of the interview came and the only instructions I received from his team was no politics. Well, that works for us since, ya know, we are a technology podcast.

The interview went better than expected and Naftali shared some incredible stories about his journey from successful entrepreneur who sold two companies for over $100 million to politician who wants to be prime minister.

Not only was the interview incredible, and not only was Naftali’s story super interesting, but one day after the episode, Bootstrap is officially the top tech podcast in Israel!

Among the many stories Naftali shared was the story of how he came to sell his startup Cyota for $145 million.

Naftali also spoke about why he joined politics and how difficult running a startup was vs. running for prime minister.

The episode was our most downloaded episode to date and the feedback has been incredible.

We already have some other big interviews planned, but I’d love your thoughts. Who should we interview next?

Here is the interview with Naftali Bennett for your listening pleasure.


About the Author
Hillel Fuld is an American Israeli technology blogger, vlogger, business advisor and international speaker.