Israel-based international venture capital fund Jerusalem Venture Partners (JVP) has launched Jerusalem and Los Angeles-based Animation Lab.

Commercials producer Ayelet Weinerman will serve as president for Animation Lab, Israel's first fully equipped feature animation studio, and has spent the past year scouting creative and managerial talent.

Weinerman, who served as executive producer for Frontier pictures in the UK and Neue Sentimental Films in Los Angeles, anticipates the studio will generate six animated features and digital ancillaries targeting the international family audience over the next eight years.

Project details will be announced in due course.

The core team includes executive vice president of creative affairs Douglas Wood, a former vice president of feature animation development and production at Turner, Warner Bros and Universal.

Wood formerly served as Steven Spielberg's former director of animation at Amblin Entertainment, and his career credits include Iron Giant, Cats Don't Dance, We're Back!, and Osmosis Jones.

Arnon Maman is chief financial officer and most recently served in the same capacity at Whale Communications, where he was instrumental in the company's July 2006 acquisition by Microsoft. Head of marketing and new media is Uri Adoni, who previously served as chief executive officer at MSN Israel.

'Our strategy is to have Hollywood and Silicon Valley creatively collide in Jerusalem,' Weinerman said. 'By combining Israel's technologically innovative CGI pipeline ideas and its entrepreneurial workforce with experienced, world-class animation talent, we intend for Animation Lab to produce distinctive original content and establish itself as a recognisable brand throughout the world.'

'Over the past decade, JVP has been dedicated to investing in global technology start-ups, leading the drive to establish Israel as a major international technology centre, second only to the US,' JVP's founder and managing partner Erel Margalit said.

'With the birth of Animation Lab, we aspire to add to the burgeoning technology sector driving the Israeli economy today by demonstrating the same level of influence on the media and entertainment industries, via the potent combination of technology and creative content.

'In Animation Lab, JVP has created a brand with creative and financial independence that brings immense appeal within the international creative community, specifically the largely-untapped pool of Israeli talent.'