In the news: Calcalist

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Tzachi Sultan invested around 300 thousand dollars in Israeli company ESS, which develops a virtual store for Facebook

Meet Easy Social Shop, a platform that invites small and medium businesses to open “stores” on Facebook, allowing users to share products, rate them and perform direct purchases. People want to shop on “Facebook”, CEO of the company, Nissim Lehyani, explained to Calcalist.

Tzachi Sultan, principal shareholder of Clal Finance Underwriting, and Nochi Dankner’s partner in the oil and gas drilling partnership Modiin, is joining the trend of investing in startups. Sultan invested 200-300 thousand dollars in Easy Social Shop, a startup which until now operated under the media’s radar, and which seeks to help small and medium businesses establish stores on Facebook. 

Broadly speaking, ESS is aiming to move the social network to becoming more like eBay and less like Facebook. ESS takes the product catalog that physical or virtual stores put on the Internet, and then transfers them to Facebook, allowing those stores to sell their products on the social network as well. The store manages the catalog on Facebook, and customers can rate the products, “Like” them and share them with their Facebook friends, and even purchase them directly.”Tzachi realized that this is a $10 billion industry” says CEO Nissim Lehyani. “We came to him when we had only a few customers, and now we have 100-150 customers signing up every day.”

The resemblance to eBay is not accidental. The company added Yoav Kutner , presently a senior executive at eBay and formerly a partner in the sale of the American startup Magento to the retail giant for $22.5 million, to the board of directors. Magento is the ESS bridge to eBay. The company became part of the ex-Commerce platform, an open source e-commerce environment open to external developers, and Kutner is expected to help ESS reach a similar status.

In addition to Facebook, ESS allows business owners to open a parallel store on other sites such as eBay, Amazon, Magneto, Shopify and Etsy. Any changes made to the catalog by the store owner on the ESS Platform is automatically implemented in all the catalog versions over the Internet, and the company also provides support services as well as all types of currency exchange.