All posts by alonbj

Strong as a Tree!

Zibb Business Challenge 2008

This year I decided to register for the Zibb Business Challenge 2008 a.k.a. Battle of the Brains.

The concept is that any entrepreneur can register, post his personal Business Challenge and compete with other entrepreneurs. The winner not only has the honour to name himself Zibb Business Challenger 2008, but also receives a prize equaling EUR 55.000,--

As CEO of Ace Jewelers Group I posted our business challenge of transforming our classic retail organization in to a hybrid company where retail and e-tail go hand in hand. This year we started the fourth company of The Ace Jewelers Group, Ace Online B.V., where we will manage all our e-commerce activities. For further details, please see my challenge on the Zibb page:

Ace Online Business Challenge: "Retail & E-tail: Friend or Foes?"

All the contestants where invited for a networking workshop on Thursday September 24, 2008 in Rotterdam. The Friday before I received a phone call that I was selected with 14 other entrepreneurs to come present our challenge for the jury and from this group of 15, the final eight contestant would be selected.

The networking workshop was fun and very interesting. I met very nice people and the jury was very enthousiastic. The day after I received a phone call that I am one of the final eight contestants 😀

Please visit this blog regularly for updates on my (personal) challenge... The next challenge is on Friday October 3rd, 2008 and is titled FUN challenge.


Project Better Place: Israel first country to deploy electric cars

This weekend I read a very interesting article about a venture named, Project Better Place, in the English weekly newspaper JC.

The article "Could this car drive oil power to a stop?" is about the unique project to make the world a better place. The State of Israel has become the first country, and Renault-Nissan the first automaker, to announce their partnerships with us to begin a mass deployment of electric cars.

Renault Nissan Project Better Place
Renault Nissan Project Better Place

The official website of Project Better Place states: "Project Better Place is very excited that the State of Israel has become the first country, and Renault-Nissan the first automaker, to announce their partnerships with us to begin a mass deployment of electric cars. We believe that it is past time to begin making it possible for consumers to choose an electric vehicle that is much less expensive to operate, does not emit pollution or greenhouse gases and provides a better driving experience from their current automobiles. The State of Israel has shown foresight in implementing an appropriate tax policy, and setting out a vision by which it can become the first industrialized nation to end the stranglehold of oil on its economy and environment. Renault-Nissan, likewise, has shown great vision and leadership , when agreeing to become the first major automaker to produce electric vehicles on a mass-scale to integrate with our infrastructure . We look forward to working with them to replace hundreds of thousands of polluting cars with new electric vehicles, for a cleaner and safer world."

This concept is set-up by Shai Agassi (as far I know, not related to Andre):

Shai Agassi
Shai Agassi

"Shai Agassi is the founder and CEO of Project Better Place, a company focused on the early 21st century’s biggest challenge - a scaleable and sustainable personal transportation system.  In this role, Agassi works directly with governments, finance, automobile manufacturers and technology companies to install, scale, and operate a regional and global infrastructure necessary for electronic vehicles.

With a personal passion in solving large-scale social and environmental issues, Agassi believes in utilizing technology and capital markets to address the challenges of sustainability and climate change.  With Better Place, he will manage the operation of international electric vehicle fleets by investing in, installing and operating countrywide charging infrastructures for electric cars, as well as working with partners to make the cars available.

Most recently, Better Place and Renault-Nissan announced a partnership that will enable electric vehicles to be mass produced for the Israeli market as announced by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert President Shimon Perez in January 2008.  Better Place is in discussions with multiple auto-makers and countries as they seek to move more markets off of oil and onto an electric recharge grid operator model.

Before founding Better Place, Agassi was formerly president of the Products and Technology Group at SAP AG and a member of the SAP AG Executive Board (2002 - 2007).  In these roles, Agassi was responsible for both the global development of the SAP product line and SAP’s portfolio of industry-specific solutions. While at SAP AG, Agassi spearheaded the development and release of SAP’s successful platform strategy; led innovations that helped the company grow into a market leader, and set the stage for the future of business software.

As a serial entrepreneur, Agassi has developed and cultivated several technology companies. During his career, Agassi founded Quicksoft Media and QuickSoft Ltd as well as TopTier Software and TopManage, which were both acquired by SAP.

Agassi is an active member of the Forum of Young Global Leaders of the World Economic Forum where he focuses on climate change and transportation issues.

I added Shai's blog The Long Tailpipe to my blogroll. Make sure to visit his blog and the official website of Project Better Place:


Triple C: Cool Car Commercials

As written here before, I love cool advertisements and commercials, hereby come cool car commercials: Triple C rating 😉

European Elegance: Audi RS6 2008 - "Gymnastics" TV commercial

American Power: Michael Bay's Commercial Chevy Cars Carrier

An oldy, but a goody: Every boys dream > Porsche

If you have a favorite, please do share!


Coach on e.factor

This week I had the honour to become a coach on this amazing website for entrepreneurs:

If you are an entrepreneur or are looking for finance opportunities to become an entrepreneur, make sure to sign up. The site is a true international platform with web 2.0 applications that wants to connect entrepreneurs.

If you have any questions or want me to send you an invite, drop me a line!