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HomeConsultingSetting up an office in Israel? 5 things to consider.

Working in (and with) Israel can be a very positive and fruitful experience from both a business and cultural perspective and is the reason a growing number of multinational companies choose to do so each year.

Helping foreign companies set up operations here in Israel is a dynamic task involving logistical, strategic and cultural aspects. When it comes to choosing an office space in Israel, there are several common considerations a company should make and questions to answer:

1. The basic needs

The number of full-time employees and fly-in visitors (from HQ, for example) that are expected to use the office.

The ideal space configuration for your corporate culture — is it an open space? Or a division of private rooms?

The kind of amenities required — boardroom access/full-service kitchen/parking spots. Will clients be visiting the office?

And of course, the term — how long will space be needed? A few months or several years?

2. Location & Property standard

Other than basic parameters such as ease of access to a quality workforce, transportation, and proximity to an airport, it is important to remember that your office location and design can say a lot about your company. Depending on industry (finance/tech/industrial, etc.), activity type (client meetings/R&D/back office, etc.) and corporate branding — your office should reflect the right image and be situated in a location that makes sense according to your activity and budget.

(In Israel, depending on the type of activity, government incentives may be available for companies who choose to locate in areas defined as ‘High priority development areas.’)

3. Privately run office or full-service managed co-working space

When choosing an office space in Israel there are two main categories: private office in an office building or a fully-managed shared office space such as WeWork, Regus, and others.

A private office offers lower rates per square meter (sqm.)/square feet (sqft.), which range between $20-$40 (US) per sqm. It does not, however, include utility bills, building fees, cleaning, receptionist, furniture and other services (and the minimum lease term is typically two years).

A fully-managed shared office, on the other hand, will include all expenses and will allow higher flexibility on term commitment (and can be as short as one month). However, the trade-off is a relatively high cost per sqm./sqft. (range between $140-$190 (US) per sqm.) which makes it less attractive above a certain number of employees/chairs.

4. Culture

In many places, and particularly in Israel, the social aspect of business networking can greatly impact a business’ success. If you choose to join a full-service managed office, knowing the location’s business “feel” and who your future neighbors will be (early-stage, innovative startups or established professional services firms) will help you make a better decision on where to locate. In Israel, many new business opportunities and synergies are created each year thanks to location-related introductions. Location is key to doing business in Israel.

5. Budget

Finally, for all office types, numbers to consider are sqm./sqft. rate and cost of parking. For private office (unmanaged) space also add:

  • Realtor fees (one time, at signing)
  • Furniture purchase/rental
  • Building management/common fees
  • Utilities (electric, communication)
  • Cleaning
  • Secretarial/reception service
  • Property tax and others

Whether you are looking to open a small office or a large-scale operation, having a trusted local partner on the ground in Israel will help you save time and money and will reduce the risk involved in doing business in a foreign territory.

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The Clearview Team

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