YBI helps bring Israeli company to Youngstown
By Jordyn Grzelewski
A Youngstown Business Incubator initiative to attract Israeli companies to Northeast Ohio has accomplished that goal.
YBI and PrintCB, an Israeli-based start-up that produces copper ink for printed electronics, Thursday announced PrintCB’s establishment of U.S. operations.
It marks the first time the Israeli-YBI collaborative, which began last year, has resulted in a company relocating here.
YBI CEO Barb Ewing said the incubator is in talks about similar moves with five other “strong prospects” from several countries.
PrintCB has hired Evan Schumann, a Kent State University graduate, as director of business development to oversee the start of U.S. operations. Schumann works primarily out of Cleveland and YBI’s Inspire Lab.
“I think it’s a powerful message that we have a great story to tell. We have great assets,” Ewing said of what the move means for the local community. “I understand it’s one job today. But this is the establishment of a company that can really change the industry.
“It’s not just this opportunity,” she said. “It’s what this opportunity will afford.”
The collaboration between YBI and PrintCB began last year, when representatives from YBI, the Youngstown Area Jewish Federation and Youngstown State University visited Israel and had meetings at numerous organizations and companies there.
Ewing met with Youngstown native Barak Rabinowitz, a managing partner at Israel-based venture capital fund F2 Capital, who then organized a meeting with Sagi Daren, PrintCB CEO and founder.
Officials explained that with copper ink’s applications in the aerospace, biomedical and auto industries, Northeast Ohio was a natural fit for the company’s move into the U.S. market.
Officials also noted strong demand they’ve identified.
“Israel is a small place with big ideas,” Rabinowitz said. “Northeast Ohio is a big place with lots of customers.”
PrintCB is now seeking seed investments to begin U.S. manufacturing.
Daren said PrintCB is slated to launch its product by the end of this year, then begin scaling up U.S. operations next year. In the future, PrintCB will look at expanding its presence in Youngstown and perhaps relocate all operations here.
“We see a very bright future for PrintCB in this area,” Daren said.