Microsoft R&D Israel
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Leadership

  • Yoram Yaacovi
    General Manager

    As General Manager of the Microsoft Israel R&D Center, Yoram is responsible for all technological activities in Israel, including the R&D sites in Haifa and Herzeliya, new core R&D projects, partnering with the local venture-capital and start-up communities, and collaborating with Israeli academic institutions. Yoram started his career in the previous century (1983) at Elbit Computers where he programmed an innovative real time data entry and display system for the Air Force. In 1984 he joined Intel where he worked for 9 years in engineering, consulting and training roles including working with leading companies in Israel and leading a Unix and X-Windows development team at Intel in Santa Clara.
    In 1993 Yoram joined Microsoft in Redmond where he spent 11 years in software development and development management roles building products and technologies such as Windows 95, NetMeeting, the Microsoft Reader, ClearType, MSN Communities, and the Microsoft Rights Management (DRM) Server. In his last job in Redmond, Yoram was Group Manager in the Information Worker division responsible for the incubation of the Office Information Bridge Framework.
    Between 2004 and 2008 Yoram was a Vice President at Amdocs (NYSE:DOX) - a leading telecom software provider, where he led the development of the Amdocs product portfolio as the head of the Amdocs Product Development Organization and later as the COO of the Amdocs Products Group.
    Yoram is the co-author of 23 patent applications (7 approved so far) and several IETF RFCs. He has a BSc in Computer Science from the Technion.

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  • Michal Braverman-Blumenstyk
    General Manager of Azure Cybersecurity

    Michal Braverman-Blumenstyk is the General Manager of Azure Cybersecurity, Microsoft. Michal Braverman-Blumenstyk is responsible for the global strategy and implementation of Azure Cybersecurity. Michal is a world-class expert in Cyber Security and a renowned speaker, she has spoken in numerous industry events - RSA Conference, NYDA Cyber conference, DLD, Herzelia Conference, Israel Business Convention, Israel President Convention and more.
    Michal is a senior and prominent figure in the Israeli Hi-tech industry. She served as GM of RSA Israel and business leader of Cyber Fraud domain for RSA Global. She was later appointed to be GM of RSA Global Solutions. Michal replaced Naphtali Bennett as a GM of RSA Israel and successfully grew the business unit from 90 to 400 people, increasing revenues 20-fold. Prior to RSA, Michal acted as the COO in the start-up company Cyota, where she let R&D, product management and Anti-Fraud array of services. Before that, she served in several senior management positions in Israeli and Global companies.
    Michal holds an M.Sc. in Computer Science from Columbia University in New York (Summa Cum Laude) and graduated the Top Executive program at the Recanati Graduate school of Business at Tel Aviv University.

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  • Ariel Katz
    Director PM

    Ariel started his career at Intel in 1994 where he participated in developing and later leading the team that implemented software management and security solutions for Desktop Management Interface (DMI) standard. In 1998 he joined Microsoft and filled in various leadership roles in both Israel and the US headquarters on its enterprise firewall and proxy server, driving the launch of ISA 2000. He left Microsoft to lead Astea’s WW R&D operations in 2006, and returned in mid-2008 as the product unit manager of Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) and Forefront Endpoint Protection (FEP) products. During 2012-2013, Ariel served as the CTO of Microsoft’s R&D center in Israel overseeing strategy, academia programs, Startup Accelerator technologies, and new incubations. Since October 2013, Ariel is the Director PM of the Protection and Access group. Ariel holds a BSc in CS from the Technion.

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  • Merav Davidson
    Director of Program Management

    Merav Davidson is the Director of Program Management for the Business Intelligence Product Group in Israel. Merav has over 20 years of experience in the software industry, combining technical, operational and executive background from various leading companies. Prior to joining Microsoft in 2010, Merav was Senior VP of Business Operations for Imperva. Before that, she held several VP roles in Mercury Interactive (acquired by HP) both in Israel and in the Silicon Valley, in Products, Services and Business Operations, including building and running Mercury’s Cloud Services business. Merav holds a B.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from Tel Aviv University.

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  • Eyal Itah
    Director of Engineering

    Eyal is a seasoned product development executive who joined the Microsoft R&D Center in January 2007. Since joining the company, he has leveraged his 18 years of rich, multi-disciplinary management experience in Software Engineering and Services to promote the R&D Centers many projects.
    As Director of Engineering at Microsoft’s R&D center in Israel, Eyal overseas the development of several cloud services and products, focusing specifically on client protection services and heterogeneous devices access solutions which are part of Microsoft’s core product offerings.
    Since joining Microsoft, he has played a pivotal role in the incubation and establishment of a Telecom group, leading the development and shipment of several telecom related online services.
    Prior to his joining Microsoft, Eyal spent 9 years working for a privately-held UK based Telecom operator, leading its development as VP R&D of innovative IP-Centrex hosted voice services and later on serving as CTO and board member of the company. During his time there, Eyal was a key contributor to the company’s success and transformation, which was recognized year after year by the Sunday Times & Deloitte Top Track 100 as the fastest growing telecom company in the UK.
    Eyal holds a Master’s degree in Software Engineering from the Imperial College in London and a BSc. in Software Engineering from Westminster University in London.

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  • Dana Porter Rubinshtein
    Strategy, Marketing and Business Planning

    Dana heads Business Strategy, Marketing and Planning for the Microsoft Israel Research & Development Center. In her role, Dana is responsible for marketing the technology and innovation leadership of the ILDC, lead business development opportunities as well as lead the product planning processes.
    Dana has 15 years of global experience in marketing, strategy and business development.
    Most recently Dana was head of marketing for Amdocs (NASDAQ: DOX). Dana led Amdocs’ global team of marketing professionals and focused on developing Amdocs’ vision, delivering strategic insight to customers, determining market strategies and providing future direction and go to market for Amdocs’ products, services and solutions. As part of her role Dana oversaw the company product marketing functions and was part of the team that executed several acquisitions into the Amdocs portfolio.
    Prior to Amdocs, Dana worked as a management consultant with Deloitte Consulting in the US, and with Tefen Consulting in Taiwan and Israel, focusing on customer-centric business and systems integration strategies.
    Dana holds an MBA from New York University and a B.Sc. in industrial engineering from Ben Gurion University in Israel.

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  • Tzahi (Zack) Weisfeld
    Senior Director, Microsoft Ventures

    Tzahi (Zack) Weisfeld is a seasoned executive and a serial entrepreneur, with 20+ years of experience in consumer technologies and enterprise markets. Business Insider (May 2014) named Zack as one of the 10 top Most Influential Israelis in Tech Worldwide.
    Zack is the Head of Microsoft Ventures Europe and Microsoft Ventures’ Global Accelerator program with 7 accelerators across the globe. Prior to his current role, he co-founded several startups including Sequoia backed’ Mintigo and acted as VP Marketing & Strategy at Modu, the Israeli personal communications startup; (IP Sold to Google Corp.) Before that, Mr. Weisfeld held the position of Sr. Director of Business Management at Microsoft Corp.
    Prior to his period at Microsoft, Mr. Weisfeld was the General Manager Americas and Corporate Vice President for the Mobile Market at MSystems (NSDQ: FLSH), acquired by SanDisk Corp (NSDQ: SNDK) for 1.6B.

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  • Ariella Shina
    Country HR Director

    Ariella Shina is HR Country Manager for MS in Israel. Ariella has over 16 years of experience in senior HR management positions with various hi-tech companies. Before joining Microsoft in 2008, Ariella served as the Country HR Director for Texas Instruments Israel. Prior to that she served as the HR VP for Alcatel Israel, as HRBP in Tadiran Telecom and as organizational consultant for the National Institute of Productivity.

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  • Ram Yonat
    Partner Director of Development

    Ram Yonat is a seasoned product leader, with over 20 years of experience from both large companies and start-ups. Ram started out as a developer at Amdocs in 1990 working on Publishing solutions, and later became part of the first development team for a billing solution for South Western Mobile Services (now known as ATT). In 1998 Ram took on the role of General Manager and VP R&D of Proactivity Software Solutions, a start-up for Business Process Modeling. He came back to Amdocs in 2002 and joined the Amdocs Billing R&D, developing the first billing product generation. He then went on to become VP R&D in Revenue Management Business Unit, delivering multiple versions of Billing and other products and later took on the position of Cross Portfolio VP R&D. In his most recent role prior to joining Microsoft in 2011, Ram was Division President Portfolio & Solutions Management at Amdocs, leading overall portfolio scope and execution. Ram holds a BSc in Computer Engineering from the Technion.

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  • Adi Diamant
    Director of Innovation Labs

    Adi Diamant, a serial entrepreneur (Emblaze, Alphacell, XOSoft, GooMe Interactive and iloop) with more than 20 years of experience in the area of streaming media, web, mobile, and iPTV markets; in both technical and strategic business aspects.
    Adi held a variety of executive positions (R&D, Business Development and Strategy, and Product Management) in software, internet-based and communications organization. Since year 2000, most of his activities went under his fully owned Consulting & Investment company, where he provided consulting and managing services, mostly to hi-tech startup in the areas of product, business strategy, business development, quality management, and funding. Adi holds a B.A. in Economics and Computer Science as well as an Executive MBA from Manchester University.

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  • Eliezer (Eli) Carmon
    Director of Finance & Operations

    The finance, operations and IT for all Israel R&D sites are led by Eli. Eli has over 14 years of experience in senior financial positions. Most recently, he served as Director of the Business Controller Group of Microsoft Middle East and Africa. Prior to that, he was Manager of the Financial Department at Microsoft Israel, Senior Manager at KPMG Israel, a leading provider of audit, tax and advisory services and a manger of the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange, Research Unit.
    Eli holds a B.A. degree in Accounting and Economics from Bar Ilan University and an M.A. in Economics from Otago University in New Zealand.

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  • Nurit Tal
    Executive Assistant to Yoram Yaacovi

    Nurit has over 15 years of experience as an Executive assistant. Prior to joining Microsoft, Nurit served for 12 years as an Executive Assistant to the Chairman and the Chief Executive Officer of U-Bank Ltd. (formerly named: Investec Bank Israel Ltd., a subsidiary of an international banking group located in Johannesburg and London). Prior to that, Nurit served as a Personal Assistant to the Israeli Ambassador in Bern, Switzerland.

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  • Liron Shaked
    Director of Business Management

    Liron Shaked is the Director of Business Management for the Microsoft Israel Research & Development Center.

    Liron brings extensive global experience in marketing, strategy and business development, as a founder and executive, from Microsoft and startup companies. Prior to re-joining Microsoft in 2013 as Director of Product Marketing for the Mobile Search Advertising group, Liron was Co-Founder at Qoiza, a mobile loyalty startup, as well as Vice President of Business Development & Marketing at Spring Mobile Solutions, a Cloud-Based Mobile application startup (funded by Goldman Sachs , NEA and SAP Ventures) . Before that, Liron spent 8 years at Microsoft, leading global strategic partnerships across Europe, Middle East & Africa and most recently, as Director of Business Development for the Microsoft Global Partner team. He holds a B.A. in Behavioral Sciences and Management from the College of Management.

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