Navot Shoresh featured in Crain’s Detroit Business
Country of origin: Israel
As a sergeant in an elite Israeli special-forces unit, Navot Shoresh became intimately familiar with high-tech gadgetry, relying on it to stay alive and complete missions in the hot spots seen on nightly television news.
“That’s really where I started to get into the electronics side of things,” he said.
After leaving the army, he worked for an Israeli company that did cable-television infrastructure work in new, high-rise construction. A relationship with a Michigan woman in 1994 led him from his home outside Haifa in northern Israel to the University of Michigan-Dearborn as an electrical engineering major.
The relationship ended, but he decided to stay and left the classroom in 2001 to found Spire Integrated Systems L.L.C., a company that specializes in home automation. That’s defined as central control of lighting, heating and air conditioning, home theater, security and other electronic devices.
“I found a niche, and I stuck with it,” he said. Spire markets its work to architects and interior designers. The company, which moved in January from Pleasant Ridge to Troy, reported $1.3 million in revenue last year and has six employees. While most of Spire’s work is for the high-end residential market, the company is increasing its commercial portfolio, Shoresh said, with plans to expand into northern Michigan, Ohio and Florida.
While Shoresh considers Israel more open to new ideas than Michigan, he plans to stay here. He and his wife, Betty Chu, an obstetrician and gynecologist, have a son and are expecting another this summer.
“I don’t know what it is about Michigan for me, but I like the people, and I have a lot of friends here. It’s been very good to me, very supportive,” he said. “Michigan offers a lot of opportunity for me.”