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From the summer edition of hitech zone: 1-on-1 with Joshua Levinberg, Co-Founder, Gilat Satellite Networks
Interview by Chat
It’s not easy to catch Joshua Levinberg, but with hitech zone’s “octopus arms…” – we found a way.
Joshua, who is the one person who most influenced you in the business world?
There are many. If I need to choose just one person, I would choose my father who managed the Maariv newspaper. He managed a large and competitive business with a lot of compassion for people.
You’ve been in the business for many years. What do you like about hi-tech, and what don’t you like?
The crazy pace… and the crazy pace.
Give us an actual suggestion of something specific that annoys you or something that you feel needs improvement.
Buses – need to run them on electricity or bio diesel – and smoking in public places – it’s against the law – despicable.
Alright, say a major corporation wants to purchase your head (literally, including your innovative ideas) for an outrageous amount of money, on the condition that you would not be able to say that these were your inventions, ideas, thoughts. Would you take the offer?
No. Taking the credit is very important to me! More than money.
You’re in a business meeting with a very senior individual. He talks with some grammatical errors. For example, instead of saying “two” in the feminine (in Hebrew), he says “two” in the masculine (in Hebrew). What would you do? Correct him? Forget about it and carry on?
I would attempt to carry on. It’s tiresome, but I don’t always manage to resist temptation.
By the way, in what real-life situation do you get your best ideas?
Always in the bathroom, when I… pee.
While we’re on the subject of good ideas, which author would you like to sit and chat with, and what would be your opening line?
Garcia Mark – “El Gusto Es Mio”.
And if you were to write a novel, how would it begin?
During my many years of business meetings in the US, I was always impressed by the local expressions that made their way into the business world. I would write these expressions in my notebook, with the intention of one day publishing them. At some point in time, the notebook got lost, but I never gave up my dream. The name of the book was “When the Shit hits the Fan.”
While we’re on the topic of writing, when did you stop correcting people who spelled Joshua (in Hebrew)… incorrectly?
A long time ago.
Leisure time – it’s known that you’re a wind surfing buff – on stormy seas or quiet seas?
17 knots is enough for me.
And while we’re talking about the sea, let’s talk about… surfing on the Internet. Do you allow everyone to be your friend on Facebook?
Almost – but not everyone.
And to end our chat… at the end – what would you like to return as in the next life?
An alto saxophone player and after that, as a ski instructor.
Joshua Levinberg is one of the founders of Gilat Satellite and is currently the company’s
VP Business Development.