BOSTON (JTA) — Companies with connections to Israel contributed $6.2 billion to the Massachusetts economy last year, a new study found.
The study, released on Thursday, was conducted by the consulting firm Stax and supported by Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Boston. It found that, when accounting for other business spending, the full economic impact of companies with Israel ties contribute $11.9 to the state economy. Revenues from this sector are growing three times as fast as the overall state economy.
“Massachusetts has become a home away from home for Israel’s innovation economy,” Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick said.
The rapid growth is a bright spot in the state, which is home to more than 200 companies with ties to Israel, up from 78 three years ago, according to the report. The businesses, which range from information technology to life sciences and software, employed more than 6,600 people in 2012.
Israeli entrepreneurs are attracted to Massachusetts because of its high concentration of top tier academic and research institutions, a highly educated workforce, access to venture capital and concentration of high technology industries, the study found.
The higher education factor is evident in the fact that nearly one-third of the Israeli-founded companies were started by Israeli alumni of Massachusetts colleges, the study says.