New tenants join ORT Houses community of values


29 July 2009 New tenants join ORT Houses community of values ORT House is not only the building where World ORTs administrative offices are based it is the heart of a community of organisations dedicated to the common good, the well-being of the Jewish People, and the success of the State of Israel. British ORT, The Kennedy Leigh Charitable Trust, Weizmann UK, the Jewish Book Council, and the Ben-Gurion University Foundation have long found the office and conference facilities at ORT House, which is owned by World ORT, perfect for their needs. Now they have been joined by the Israel Embassys Commercial Affairs Department and the Israel Bonds-Development Corporation for Israel. The congregation of like-minded organisations benefits the organisations themselves but the icing on the cake of ORT Houses commercial success is the contribution it makes to the educational progress of ORT students around the world.

World ORT is an organisation that supports Jewish communities all over the world and the State of Israel, values which accord to those of my organisation and to me personally. It goes without saying that I prefer paying rent to such an organisation than to some anonymous corporation, said Moti Besser, Managing Director of Israel Bonds UK.
The result is that World ORT is in the fortunate position of effectively living rent free in the centre of London, one of the worlds most expensive cities, a fact which contributes in no small way to the organisations enviable record on containing costs.
While operational activities have increased bringing a commensurate rise in fundraising revenues these gains have been achieved without any increase in administrative overheads, wrote Chief Financial Officer Steve West in this years World ORT Report. Administrative costs currently represent only approximately five per cent of fundraising revenue, an achievement of which World ORT is proud.
Mr Besser, whose organisation sells government-backed bonds which help to finance Israels investment in major infrastructure projects, explained his move to ORT House.
We used to be located in central London but as the new Managing Director I felt that we needed to be in a better organisational environment, he said. I was impressed when I visited ORT House because all the tenants are organisations that are connected in one way or another to the State of Israel. So I like the environment; its a wonderful building with wonderful tenants.
The other new tenant the Israeli Embassys Commercial Affairs Department has taken five rooms at ORT House while renovation work continues at the Israeli Embassy.
My department is one of the largest in the Embassy, said Minister of Commercial Affairs Gil Erez. We generate a lot of traffic in our bid to help Israeli and British companies find each other so we are happy to have found such a warm and secure environment to continue our work until renovations at the Embassy end in 10 months. ORT House was the best option for us from every aspect.
World ORT Director General and CEO Robert Singer is due to formally welcome the new tenants to ORT House at a ceremony next week.
We are very happy to have these two teams with us at ORT House, which is becoming one of the main centres of Jewish intellectual life in London, Mr Singer said. Their presence adds significantly to the critical mass of industry and expertise in this building devoted to the peace and progress of Jews around the world and in Israel in particular.