Ofra Strauss

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Ofra Strauss
Ofra Strauss.jpg
Ofra Yasmin Strauss

(1960-08-22) 22 August 1960 (age 58)
Nahariya, Israel
ResidenceTel Aviv, Israel
OccupationChairperson of Strauss Group
Years active2001–present
Dan Lahat
(m. 1987; div. 2001)

Adi Keizman
(m. 2005; div. 2010)
Parent(s)Michael Strauss

Ofra Yasmin Strauss (Hebrew: עפרה יסמין שטראוס; born 22 August 1960) is an Israeli business magnate and industrialist. She is the Chairperson of the public Strauss Group which is traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange,[1] second largest food product manufacturer in Israel.[2][3] She was appointed to the position of chairperson in 2001, after being groomed for the job, following the retirement of her father Michael Strauss who has continued to be involved in the firm in various capacities following his formal retirement.

Strauss is Chair of the Israeli-America Chamber[4] since 2011.

Early life[edit]

Strauss was born in Nahariya, Israel. The eldest of three children of Ella (born 1935, Yugoslavia), a nurse and holocaust survivor, and Michael, chairperson of Strauss Group, the son of the founders Hilda and Dr. Richard Strauss. Strauss has a younger sister Irit (former advertiser and current business partner of brother) and a younger brother (Adi, a businessman founder of “Adi’s lifestyle”).[5]

Strauss grew up in the family business. Her father Michael said in an interview [6] that as an 11-year-old girl, she would join his night delivery route, during which she used to help carrying 20-kg containers of dairy products, listen to his business talks and follow carefully how many cartons were delivered and registered. She filled a number of roles in the company through the years.

She graduated in 1987 from Tel Aviv University Law School. As a student, she met Dan Lahat, the son of then Tel Aviv mayor Shlomo Lahat and married him.[7] Her parents divorced in 1981, and during her studies, in 1985 her mother died.

Business career[edit]

During 1987-1989 she worked in the marketing department of the Estée Lauder Companies Inc. in New York City, the American cosmetics line. During this time, she led a marketing campaign for the company in Japan.

In 1989, upon Strauss’ return to Israel, she filled a number of roles in the family business and was groomed to succeed her father Michael as chairperson. She was appointed Marketing director of the ice cream division and then head of the food division in the corporation, in 1993 Strauss was nominated director general of the Strauss salads company.[8] During this time the Struass company grew, led by her father, via a series of major acquisitions in the Israeli food business most notable Elite in 1996, following which she was appointed as CEO of Elite. In 2001, following the formal retirement of her father, she was appointed chairperson.

From 2002-2004 Strauss managed the integration and merger of Elite[9] into the Strauss group, following the Elite acquisition in 1996 which left Elite as a separate company with common controlling ownership. In 2007-2008 Elite was dropped from the company title (which was Strauss-Elite) and company-wide branding, remaining a chocolate and coffee brand.[10][11]

Strauss has developed strategic partnerships [12] with Danone, PepsiCo, Haier, São Miguel [13] and Virgin, for the sale of dairy, coffee, water, dips and spreads. The partnership with PepsiCo also created the US-based Sabra Dipping Company, since 2009 the largest hummus manufacturer worldwide.

Since 2011 Strauss has been Chair of the Israel-America Chamber of Commerce. Strauss' field of food technology is a significant issue in the Chamber's work.[14][15][16]

Philanthropic activities[edit]

  • She has stated that gender inequality is an important issue for her.[17]
  • Strauss is President of the Israeli NGO Jasmine, promoting Jewish and Arab Israeli women's entrepreneurship. The 2016 Israeli Knesset Parliament Speakers` Quality of Life Prize" was awarded to Jasmine for its work on promoting a respectful and tolerant society.[18]
  • In 2008 Strauss launched,[19](with the Israel's Women Network) [20] the Israeli Catalyst census of women in corporate/public company boards[21]– taking after the global Catalyst organization.[22]
  • She is a member of the ICWBL [23][24] International Council on Women’s Business Leadership.
  • Former Chair of WIZO Women’s International Zionist Organization fundraising.[25][26][27]
  • She founded a scholarship program named after Hilda Strauss,[28] her grandmother and co-founder of the family business.
  • Strauss is a board member of HESEG,[29] the Israeli Foundation for Former Lone Soldiers who came from the diaspora with their families and now live and work in Israel.
  • She is a board member of the Taub Center [30] for social policy studies in Israel research of social policy in Israel.
  • During the 2000s Strauss was chair of the public council of [31] the “Together at Home” project for integration and absorption of newcomer Ethiopian Jews in Israel[32] with the Jewish Agency, as well as being the public chair of the Amez Lohem project[33][34]
  • She was Chair of the Israeli MAALA CSR and Corporate Governance Forum[35]

Awards and recognition[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Strauss is a mother of four: Michaela, a photographer; Tom, co-founder of design start-up Tailor Brands;[40](subscription required)[41] and Jasmine[42] are her three children from her first marriage to Dan Lahat.[43] Daniel is her daughter from her second marriage to Adi Keizman.[44]


  1. ^ "Strauss Group". Strauss Group. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  2. ^ "מעלות מאשררת את דירוג AA+ ואת התחזית השלילית לשטראוס". themarker.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  3. ^ "שטראוס גייסה 200 מיליון שקל בהנפקה פרטית של מניות למוסדיים". calcalist.co.il. 4 April 2017. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  4. ^ "The Israel-America Chamber of Commerce - Ofra Strauss". amcham.co.il. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  5. ^ "השטראוסים מחפשים קונה למרבית המסעדות של עדי'ס לייף סטייל". calcalist.co.il. 26 May 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  6. ^ Spector, Peled, Dana, Asafa (June 22, 2011). "(Heb - שומרת על השמנת". Yedioth Aharonoth "7 Yamim". Israel.
  7. ^ http://www.womenatwork.co.il/קריירה/נשים-מצליחות/עופרה-שטראוס/
  8. ^ "Ofra's World - Campden FB". www.campdenfb.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  9. ^ Coren, Ora (1 January 2004). "Strauss, Elite Sign Merger Agreement". Retrieved 2 May 2017 – via Haaretz.
  10. ^ Strauss-Elite changing name to Strauss (Hebrew), YNET, 2007
  11. ^ New Branding for Strauss including new Elite logo (Hebrew), Calcalist, 2008
  12. ^ "Danone, Strauss Partners". strauss-group.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  13. ^ "São Miguel, Strauss Partners". strauss-group.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  14. ^ amcham. "The Israel-America Chamber of Commerce - Israeli Food-Tech Delegation to the U.S. - March 2017". www.amcham.co.il. Retrieved 3 May 2017.
  15. ^ "Launching the Strauss FoodTech Incubator - The Kitchen - Strauss Group". strauss-group.com. Retrieved 3 May 2017.
  16. ^ "Ofra Strauss". DLD Tel Aviv 2013. Retrieved 3 May 2017.
  17. ^ "עופרה שטראוס: "עד 2020 מחצית ממשרות הניהול יאוישו בידי נשים"". Ynet (in Hebrew). Retrieved 24 April 2017.
  18. ^ "The 2016 Knesset Speakers Quality of Life Prize - Jasmine". jasmine.org.il. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  19. ^ "מדד קטליסט ישראל: אילו חברות הנסחרות במדד ת"א 100 הן השוויוניות ביותר?". themarker.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  20. ^ http://www.iwn.org.il/pages/לינקים-מומלצים
  21. ^ http://www.onlife.co.il/עבודה/קריירה/72636/דוח-קטליסט-2014-הפתעה-לא-נעימה
  22. ^ http://www.strauss-group.co.il/wp-content/blogs.dir/1/files/דוח-קטליסט-2013-עברית-סופי.pdf
  23. ^ "International Council on Women's Business Leadership". giwps.georgetown.edu. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  24. ^ "Summary of Discussions of January 24, 2012 International Council on Women's Business Leadership". state.gov. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  25. ^ a b "Food firm with a big appetite". Jewish Chronicle. October 7, 2010.
  26. ^ http://2013.presidentconf.org.il/speaker/גברת-עפרה-שטראוס-ישראל/
  27. ^ "Stocks". Bloomberg.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  28. ^ "חלוקת מלגות לימודים I קבוצת שטראוס". strauss-group.co.il. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  29. ^ "HESEG Foundation - About". www.heseg.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  30. ^ http://taubcenter.org.il/wp-content/files_mf/sept2011.pdf
  31. ^ ynet (11 July 2005). "המועצה הציבורית של פרויקט "בבית ביחד"". Retrieved 2 May 2017 – via Ynet.
  32. ^ "עפרה שטראוס, יו"ר מועצת המנהלים, קבוצת שטראוס-עלית". www.herzliyaconference.org. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  33. ^ "קרן אמץ לוחם תעניק מלגות בהיקף של 10 מיליון שקל". 29 August 2001. Retrieved 2 May 2017 – via Ynet.
  34. ^ ""אמץ לוחם" והענק לו מילגה - גלובס". Globes. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  35. ^ http://www.maala.org.il/אודות-מעלה/ההיסטוריה-של-מעלה/
  36. ^ "מקבלי פרס תעשייה". www.industry.org.il. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  37. ^ a b "Ofra Strauss". DLD Conference. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  38. ^ "Israel's top 10 female executives". israel21c.org. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  39. ^ "International Power 50 - Ofra Strauss (46) - FORTUNE". archive.fortune.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  40. ^ "Subscribe to read". www.ft.com. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  41. ^ "In Design We Trust Interview With Tom Lahat from Tailor Brands". inspr.co. 25 October 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  42. ^ "מי היורשת שסיימה קורס קצינים בהצטיינות? - מחלקה ראשונה". mako.co.il. 25 November 2015. Retrieved 2 May 2017.
  43. ^ http://www.nrg.co.il/online/archive/ART/106/446.html
  44. ^ "עדי קייזמן ועפרה שטראוס חגגו בת מצווה לבתם". mako.co.il. 12 February 2017. Retrieved 2 May 2017.

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