Abigail Klein Leichman
June 14, 2016, Updated June 13, 2016

This year’s TAU Innovation Conference, billed as Israel’s largest innovation conference, ended June 9 with three female entrepreneurs chosen as the top winners of the TLV Startup Challenge, one of the much-anticipated events of the three day conference attended by roughly 3,000 participants.

The winners were selected from 50 startups who pitched to the judging panels throughout the third day of the conference.

The first-place winner, Reporty, led by Lital Leshem, won $24,000 plus a trip to a Silicon Valley Roadshow. Using the power of the crowd, Reporty is revolutionizing the way first-response and public-safety agencies manage events in the field. The startup is based in Tel Aviv.

Second-place winner Trench, led by Adi Shemesh, won $24,000 and three months at Plug & Play, the biggest accelerator in the United States. Based in Tel Aviv and spreading throughout US college campuses, Trench brings the sharing economy to fashion by letting members, based on location, buy and sell items using digital coins called “diamonds.”

Third-place winner Evolita of Caesarea, led by Katya Goldstein, received $24,000 and office space for six months at MerkSpace Tel Aviv. Evolita, still in beta, enables managers to perform instant data-driven research without prior experience with research tools or domain-specific knowledge.

The annual conference is sponsored by the StarTau entrepreneurship center, established in 2009 to offer support for early-stage projects developed by Tel Aviv University students.

At the June event, more than 20 foreign embassy representatives presented their strategies for the Israeli entrepreneur ecosystem to engage in their countries, and offered networking opportunities with selected entrepreneurs, investors and industry leaders.

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