Faces Of The Startup Nation: Q&A With Zohar Dayan Of Wibbitz
Zohar Dayan is the co-founder and CEO of Wibbitz, a technology that can automatically turn any text article into a short video. A graduate of the Zell Entrepreneurship Program at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya, Dayan also holds a B.A. in Business Administration, two degrees that have come to his aid in the founding and management of several startups. Wibbitz, his latest up-and-coming startup, is supported by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing’s venture capital firm Horizons Ventures, funders of the likes of Facebook and was rated best of the Apple App Store in 2013.
Who is your biggest inspiration? This one may sound pretty ubiquitous for a member of the tech world, but Steve Jobs. It is so rare to see and individual make such an intense impact on the world without compromising on their beliefs.
What were your first steps into the business world? At the age of 15 I created an online restaurant guide for kosher restaurants. It actually ended up becoming one of the most popular guides at the time, but maybe because that was before the age of mass food photography and Urbanspoon-like apps.
Who is the one person, past or present, you’d love to have dinner with? Definitely Albert Einstein, but not for the reasons that you may think. I would love to pick his brain, not about scientific topics, but more about his view on life. The man lived one of the most interesting and exciting lives in history. I wonder what kind of startup he would found….
If you weren’t an entrepreneur, what would you be? I’d be an architect. I’ve always admired good design and interesting architectural concepts. Sometimes I find myself walking the streets of Tel Aviv just looking up at the awesome buildings that are in our office’s neighborhood.
On that note – Tel Aviv or New York? Right now I am living in New York, but eventually I would like to move back to Tel Aviv. The White City is where my heart is and it’s eventually where I would like my children to grow up.
If you were a selfie, what would you look like?
Star Wars or Star Trek? Star Wars, although I’m really not that kind of geek.
What are you totally addicted to? The news. Ever since I can remember, current events were something that was very important to me. This may be what drove me to create Wibbitz, because its been ages since someone has thought of a new way to the deliver the news.
What are you favorite weekend activities? I always say that I don’t see enough sunsets. The weekend is usually the only time I can find to go to the beach and clear my mind from the busy work week.
Who was your first celebrity crush? Back in the early 90’s it was probably Kelly from “Saved By The Bell.” But really, who didn’t think she was cute?
Speaking of cute – Bar Refaeli or Gal Gadot? Gal Gadot. She’s actually a good friend of mine. She is super talented, smart and really down to earth. To keep an even playing field, Bar is also really nice 🙂
What’s your favorite Hebrew word? Chikmuk (meaning: something small and unimportant). It’s really fun to say and it has a special meaning for me…
What’s the best advice you ever got from your parents? Be true to thyself and others.
NoCamels “Faces of the Startup Nation” features the leading entrepreneurs, innovators, investors and visionaries to give you an exclusive peak into the movers and shakers of Israel’s innovation scene. If you want to suggest a “Face”, write us in the comments below!
Photos: courtesy/ NBC