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O'Malley touts new Md.-Israel business ties during Mideast trip

Four Israeli high-tech firms plan to soon open offices or add staff in Maryland, Gov. Martin O'Malley announced Tuesday, the third day of his eight-day economic development trip to Israel and Jordan.

The four companies are Shekel Scales, Askimo, Roboteam and Hybrid Security, O'Malley said in a statement.

Shekel Scales, which builds retail, industrial and healthcare scales for precision weighing, opened an office in Owings Mills earlier this year, according to the governor's statement. The firm plans to hire 30 people for its operations here, the statement said.

Askimo, an online learning company based in Tel Aviv, hosts a library of video interviews with experts on its website. The company plans to open an office with four employees in Montgomery County by the end of the summer, O'Malley's statement said.

Roboteam's Maryland office will "support its development of robots that collect tactical intelligence, dispose of explosives, conduct search and rescue operations and survey hazardous material spills," the statement said.

Hybrid Security, which develops "artificially intelligent cybersecurity solutions," will open an office in Maryland within six months, O'Malley's statement said.

"We chose Maryland for our U.S headquarters because we see it becoming a leader in the cyber industry," said Hybrid Security CEO Raviv Raz, in the statement from the governor's office.

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