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Promised Land

U.S. companies find new opportunities by partnering with Israeli firms.

This story appears in the August 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Susan Rogers' search for a low-cost device to screen American students for scoliosis led to an unexpected place: Israel. In 2003, through the Tel Aviv-based BIRD Foundation, an organization that connects U.S. companies seeking technology with Israeli firms that want access to U.S. markets, School Health Corp. in Hanover Park, Illinois, located an Israeli company to work with on product development. School Health, a 100-employee company founded by Rogers' grandfather in 1957, even got financial help for the project.

OrthoScan, the Israeli company School Health is partnered with, "has a product that's successful with orthopedic surgeons," Rogers explains. "They were trying to make something that could be used for screening, which is what we specialize in. We saw a really good fit." With the help of a $400,000 joint grant for OrthoScan and School Health from the BIRD Foundation, School Health hopes to sell its low-cost scoliosis screener to American school nurses and health departments starting in late 2005.

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