Morris Kahn

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Morris Kahn
Morris Kahn.jpg
Morris Kahn
BornMay 1930 (age 88)
Benoni, South Africa
ResidenceBeit Yanai, Israel
NationalityIsraeli
EducationBenoni High School
OccupationBusinessman
Known forFounder and chairman of Aurec Group
Net worthUS$1.0 billion (January 2017)[1]
Spouse(s)Jackie Maloon (died 2011)
Children2

Morris Kahn (born March 1930) is a South African-born Israeli billionaire entrepreneur. He is the founder of Golden Pages Israel, Amdocs, the Aurec Group, Coral World and other companies. Through Coral World he founded several marine parks around the world, including the underwater observatory in Eilat, Israel.[2] He is active in philanthropy and venture philanthropy.

Early life[edit]

Morris Kahn was born in March 1930[3] in Benoni, South Africa, to a Jewish family. He is the eldest child of Philip and Beattie Kahn.[4] He was an active member of the Zionist youth group, Habonim.[5]

In 1956, Kahn moved from South Africa to Israel with his wife, Jacqueline Maloon, and their two sons, Benjamin and David.[6][7][8]

Business ventures[edit]

Kahn’s business career in Israel began with a few business ventures, including a bicycle factory in Beit Shemesh in partnership with Kibbutz Tzora; and a cattle company in the Northern Galilee.[8]

In 1978 Kahn and Shmuel Meitar founded the Aurec Group,[9] an Israeli-based private equity firm which started with investments in the cable and telecom sectors.[10] This led to the installation of a fiber optic cable from Israel to Italy, which connected Israel to the rest of the world.[9]

His first major success began with the establishment of the Golden Pages in Israel in 1968,[11] which led to the co-founding of Amdocs in 1982,[12] together with Shmuel and Tzvi Meitar.[13][5] Amdocs provides customer relationship management and billing software for big telecommunications firms. [7] The company, which is traded on NASDAQ (revenue in fiscal 2015: $3.6 billion) currently serves more than 300 clients in more than 90 countries,[14] and has about 26,000 employees.[9]

Aurec also owns Golden Channels, Israel's first cable company, founded in 1989[11][15] and Golden Lines, Israel's first international communications company, founded in 1996.[11]

In 1997 the Aurec Group acquired 50% of Netcom, the launch of AIG Golden Insurance and Alpha Visa-Card.[11]

He is a principal investor in Aurum Ventures and the clean tech water company Atlantium,[16] that uses UV rays to disinfect water, [5] and N-Trig, a manufacturer of multi-touch screens for computers.[17] In 2016 Aurum Ventures invested $3 million in a new method of diagnosing cancer developed by Noklaiks (Nucleix) Israel.[18]

Time to Know is a digital education platform which Kahn first launched as a nonprofit organization focused on improving grade school education, but has since developed into a for-profit business which is being tested in schools in New York City and in Israel.[7]

Philanthropy[edit]

Kahn supports the work of “Save a Child’s Heart,” (SACH) an organization that brings Israeli doctors around the world to perform life-saving surgery and medical monitoring for children of all races, religions, nationalities, and economic status.[19][20]

The Morris Kahn Initiative is a $4 million program to help develop pioneering cancer research at Tel Aviv University. The initiative’s aim is to develop 3D cancer modeling of live cancer tumors.[21]

“Big Data Maccabi,” founded with contributions from Kahn, will help medical professionals to diagnose illness using the information collected during blood tests, imaging and other diagnostic testing.[22]

He supports Serious Fun, a camp for children with terminal illness, and a therapeutic horse-riding camp for the disabled.[7]

Kahn founded Zalul in 1999, a non-profit foundation which cleans bodies of water in Israel.[7]

Founded by Morris Kahn, SpaceIL is the first to sign a launch agreement for a private moon mission on the SpaceX Falcon 9 Launcher.[23] SpaceIL hopes to land an Israeli spacecraft on the moon later in the year 2017.[9]

He started the Youth Leadership Program called LEAD, dedicated to developing the next generation of leaders.[24]

Kahn is a supporter of Ben-Gurion University and the National Institute for Biotechnology of the Negev.[25]

The Morris Kahn Institute for Human Immunology was funded by Kahn.[8]

In conjunction with the Weizman Institute, he founded the Kahn Family Research Center for Systems Biology of the Human Cell.[26]

Kahn supports the Morris Kahn and Maccabi Health Data Science Institute, to create a database for the 2.5 million members of the Maccabi Healthcare Services organization.[9]

He sponsors an Omo Valley and Jinka, Ethiopia-based project, Jinka Eye Camp, for volunteer Israeli surgeons to perform operations to restore eyesight to people living in rural villages suffering from eye diseases such as cataracts and trachoma.[27]

Coral World International[edit]

Kahn, a former diver, founded Coral World International, a group of aquariums around the world in Eilat, Israel; Maui, Hawaii; Perth, Australia; St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands;[28] Coral Island Nassau, The Bahamas; Oceanworld in Manly, Australia;[29] and elsewhere. [10]

Honours[edit]

Kahn was named honorary president of the 20th Maccabiah by Maccabi World Union Chairman Yair Hamburger in November 2016, and opened the Games in July, 2017 in Jerusalem.[30]

In 2014, he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Telfed (the South African Zionist Federation, Israel).[31]

In October, 2016 Kahn received the Lifetime Achievement award from the Israel-USA Chamber of Commerce for his work promoting economic relations between Israel and the USA, with such business partnerships as Amdocs and AIG-Israel.[32]

Bar-Ilan University awarded Kahn an honorary doctorate for his support, bringing state-of-the-art labs and equipment to the university.[33]

Former US astronaut Buzz Aldrin tweeted the following congratulatory note to Kahn: “I congratulate my friend Morris Kahn & TeamSpaceIL on inspiring the next generation in Israel to reach for space.”[34]

Personal life[edit]

Kahn has two sons, David and Benjamin Kahn, a marine biologist, who was a Time Magazine hero for his work on the environment.[16] He was married to his late wife, Jacqueline, until the time of her death in 2011.[8] He lives in Beit Yanai, north of Tel Aviv.[25]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Worlds Billionaires". Forbes. 30 January 2017. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  2. ^ "מוריס קאהן מונה לנשיא הכבוד של המכביה". www.one.co.il. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  3. ^ "AMDOCS (UK) LIMITED - Officers (free information from Companies House)". Beta.companieshouse.gov.uk. Retrieved 2017-03-30.
  4. ^ Slier, Lionel (10 July 2009). "Community Buzz" (PDF). South African Jewish Report. p. 7. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  5. ^ a b c Georgi, Anat; Grimland, Guy (2017-05-09). "Confessions of a 'Start-up Junkie'". Haaretz. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  6. ^ http://www.sajr.co.za/docs/default-source/pdf/2009/10-july-2009.pdf?sfvrsn=2
  7. ^ a b c d e "Israeli Billionaire Morris Kahn: Life Beyond the Sea". Forbes.com. 2011-03-29. Retrieved 2017-01-13.
  8. ^ a b c d "Morris Kahn: Serial entrepreneur, serial philanthropist" (PDF). Weizmann Institute. Spring 2016. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  9. ^ a b c d e "Morris Kahn: Honorary Maccabiah president is a modern Maccabean hero". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2017-08-03.
  10. ^ a b "Morris Kahn, The World's Richest People - Forbes.com". www.forbes.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  11. ^ a b c d "Morris Kahn - Aurec Group - Globes English". Globes (in Hebrew). Retrieved 2017-08-03.
  12. ^ Schechter, Asher (2016-09-29). "Behind the Scenes at the Company Behind the Scenes". Haaretz. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  13. ^ Horesh, Hadar (2016-10-29). "Aurec Sells Off Last Israeli Asset Golden Pages". Haaretz. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  14. ^ "Amdocs Corporate Fact Sheet" (PDF). Amdocs. 2016. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  15. ^ "Cable TV Council Approves Idan Cable Network Sale to Golden Channels, Fishman - Globes English". Globes (in Hebrew). Retrieved 2017-08-03.
  16. ^ a b "Israel's 10 richest men and women". Israel21c. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  17. ^ "Morris Kahn Net Worth". TheRichest. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  18. ^ "אורבימד, זהר זיסאפל ומוריס קאהן משקיעים בחברה לאבחון סרטן - גלובס". Globes. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  19. ^ ""לפחות העולם רואה ומבין ממה אנחנו עשויים באמת"". Ynet (in Hebrew). 2016-04-12. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  20. ^ "Saving children in Tanzania". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  21. ^ "Curing cancer in three dimensions?". english.tau.ac.il. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  22. ^ יסעור, מיטל (19 December 2016). "111 איש אותרו כבעלי סיכון לחלות בסרטן המעי הגס". Israel HaYom. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  23. ^ "Israeli Google Lunar XPRIZE Team Is First to Sign Launch Agreement For Private Mission to the Moon On SpaceX Falcon 9". Google Lunar XPRIZE. 2015-10-09. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  24. ^ "Public Board | SpaceIL". www.spaceil.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  25. ^ a b "Drilling and diving with Israel's Top 10". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  26. ^ "Gut Bacteria, Artificial Sweeteners, and Glucose Intolerance". www.newswise.com. Retrieved 2017-08-02.
  27. ^ "Israeli doctors give the gift of sight". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2017-08-03.
  28. ^ "Coral World St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands". www.coralworld.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  29. ^ "Coral World International - Company Profile". www.coralworld.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  30. ^ "Morris Kahn named honorary Maccabiah president". The Jerusalem Post | JPost.com. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  31. ^ http://www.telfed.org.il/lifetime_achievement
  32. ^ "קשת ו-WEWORK בין הזוכות באות לשכת המסחר ישראל - ארה"ב לשנת 2016". mako. 2016-10-31. Retrieved 2017-01-30.
  33. ^ "Morris Kahn" (PDF). Bar-Ilan University. Retrieved 30 January 2017.
  34. ^ "Buzz Aldrin on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 2017-01-30.