While General Motors focuses most of its resources on a handful of technical and engineering centers in the U.S., Europe and Asia, it has quietly been expanding its presence in the Middle East, using its Israeli facility as a sort of technical eye on the future.
GM has steadily increased the size of the staff at its center in Herzliya, Israel and expects it to number more than 200 by 2013. That, says the facility’s chief, will let it tap into the highly advanced engineering and research base Israel has become known for..
“You need that kind of structure in the car business,” says GM Israel site director Gil Golan.
“There are so many parts to a modern car that need to be engineered in order to ensure that everything works properly,” he says. “It’s far more complicated than with Internet companies, for example, where they produce a product or technology that can be ‘plugged in’ to a website or another product. We found that we’re far more successful if we put the full resources of GM at the service of the local subsidiary,” Golan said.