Businessman and philanthropist Leo Noe has dedicated a lifetime achievement award to his late parents.
The property tycoon received the accolade for his contribution to enhancing bilateral links at the UK Israel Business Awards dinner on Tuesday. A chest infection prevented him from collecting the trophy in person.
Now the biggest owner of shopping centres in Israel, he also established the Kemach Foundation which has helped tens of thousands of charedim into the workplace, enabling them to provide for families. “What began as charity has become an investment – in social welfare, education and community integration,” his son Zvi said, delivering an acceptance speech to 420 guests.
“There are no excuses anymore – there are opportunities for everyone to succeed if they want to and Kemach graduates are gibing back and providing an inspiring future for their children. I am proud of all my business achievements in the UK, Israel and Europe, but changing the mind set of and a section of society and helping the Land of Israel, is more rewarding than writing any cheque.”
Business and charity had driven the success of each other, he added.
Ahead of Israel’s 70th birthday, UK Israel Business CEO Hugo Bieber said: “The fabulous business record of Leo Noe and his huge commitment to good causes in the UK and Israel is rightly recognised in this year of great significance.”
Erel Margalit, founder of Jerusalem Venture Partners, spoke of his vision to improve the economic lot of poorer parts of Israeli society through seven innovation hubs nationally. He also hopes to bring his hi-tech vision to 10 cities in the region. “If we find innovative people in each we’ve found a bridge for cooperation.”