Who Profits

Introduction

Who Profits is a leader in BDS efforts against Israeli and foreign companies. The NGO maintains a public database of businesses that are often targeted in international BDS campaigns.

For more information on Who Profits, read NGO Monitor’s Report “Who Profits: Foundation for the UN BDS Blacklist.”

Profile

Country/TerritoryIsrael
Websitehttp://www.whoprofits.org
FoundedRegistered Israeli Amuta (non-profit organization) in 2013 formerly a research project of the Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP)
In their own words“research center dedicated to exposing the commercial involvement of Israeli and international companies in the continued Israeli control over Palestinian and Syrian land”

Funding

Activities

  • Who Profits was founded “as a research project of the Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP) – a feminist, Palestinian-Jewish organization devoted to the struggle against the occupation…” and “in response to the Palestinian call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) movement” against Israel.
    • In 2013, “in light of the expansion of Who Profits and its increasing professionalization as a research center, the project separated from CWP and became an independent organization. Who Profits and CWP continue to collaborate as sister organizations.”
  • Who Profits seeks to expose “the commercial involvement of Israeli and international companies in the continued Israeli control over Palestinian and Syrian land… we focus on three main areas of corporate involvement in the occupation: the settlement industry, economic exploitation and control over population.”

BDS Activities

  • Who Profits’ initiates international BDS campaigns, targeting Israeli and foreign banks, security companies, civil infrastructure facilities, and private companies. It supports BDS campaigns around the world in finding target companies. The website provides the option to “Report a Company,” and calls on the public “to identify companies that should be included in their database.” This database includes more than 500 Israeli and international businesses.
  • Who Profits has participated in campaigns against Ahava, Airbnb, HP, and G4S.
  • In December 2018, Who Profits published a report on how the “Israeli Wine Industry Remains Complicit in the Israeli Settlement Enterprise.” Who Profits accused Israeli wineries of “us[ing] the planting of vineyards as a means of seizing public and private Palestinian land.”
  • In November 2018, Who Profits targeted corporations involved in surveillance technology within Jerusalem stating that the policies and practices of these companies “enable[]…a violently repressive security apparatus, designed to suppress any form of resistance to Israel’s occupation, while engineering a ‘façade of normalcy.’”
  • In September 2017, Who Profits published a report, “Touring Israeli Settlements: Business and Pleasure for the Economy of Occupation,” accusing Israel of “pursu[ing] a dual strategy for its aggressive exploitation, heavily investing in Israeli tourist enterprises beyond the Green Line while simultaneously restricting and actively de-developing the Palestinian tourism industry.” Who Profits accused companies active in the tourism industry, such as Booking.com, Airbnb, and TripAdvisor, of “reaping massive amounts of profit and, in the process, strengthening the Israeli settlement enterprise and Israel’s economy of occupation as a whole.”
  • In August 2017, Who Profits released a publication titled “What We Know about HP So Far,” examining HP’s “occupation-related activities” and stating that “HP, though formally defunct, remains heavily involved in the settlement enterprise and the economy of the occupation as a whole.”
  • In July 2017, following a water-sharing deal between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Who Profits published a Facebook post stating that the “latest water-sharing agreement between Israel and the Palestinian authority only serves to highlight the vastly unequal relationship between occupier and occupied.” The post also repeated the false allegations from its 2013 report against the Israeli national water company Mekorot, that it is “exploit[ing] Palestinian water sources,” “appl[ying] discriminatory water prices, charging Palestinians higher rates than Israelis,” and “enabl[ing] extensive agricultural production in illegal Israeli settlements.”
  • In May 2017, Who Profits published “Occupational Hazards: The Eco-Politics of the Israeli Occupation,” accusing six waste and recycling management companies that operate facilities in the West Bank of “enjoy[ing] an environmentally-friendly and clean image while exploiting Palestinian natural resources, taking advantage of the area’s lax environmental regulations and creating pollution in the West Bank.”
  • In November 2016, Who Profits, in partnership with BADIL and Al-Haq, held a side event at the United Nation’s Forum on Business and Human Rights titled “Business and Human Rights in Palestine: The Many Facets of the Occupation Industry,” discussing “the development of a data base of corporations complicit in human rights violations in the oPt.”
  • Who Profits and Coalition of Women for Peace co-authored a report titled “Knowing the Occupation Economy” (2015).
    • Who Profits attached a “sample letter” (see appendix 1) to the report under the title “contact company management.” The letter seeks to “bring to your attention your company’s involvement in the ongoing expulsion of Palestinian residents from their homes and lands- a process which beginning in the 1948 Nakba, and is continuously ongoing in the day to day policies of occupation and land theft” (emphasis added).
    • Also calls for lobbying the EU to cancel the EU-Israel trade agreement relating to the Israeli pharmaceutical industry.
    • Who Profits acts against small and medium businesses in Israel. NGO Monitor has acquired a number of letters sent in English from the “Who Profits staff” to Israeli businesses, informing them that they will be added to the NGO’s database (see appendix 2). The consequences of being added to this “database” include being targeted by BDS campaigners and being lobbied against in various international forums.
  • In May 2015, Who Profits was part of a BDS campaign against the French telecom company Orange and its connections with the Israeli company Partner. Reflecting an extreme political agenda opposed to Israeli self-defense, Who Profits makes allegations that are completely unrelated to commercial involvement in the West Bank and Golan Heights: “As part of its social responsibility policy, the company sponsors two Israeli military units, the Ezuz armored battalion and the Shachar search and rescue unit, through the provision of sports days, entertainment activities and training. During the attack on Gaza in the summer of 2014, Partner was on the front lines providing material support, cellular services and entertainment to the Israeli soldiers. The company also waived service fees for soldiers during the 2014 assault” (emphasis added).
  • Based on information provided by Who Profits, a large Dutch pension fund, PGGM, announced on January 8, 2014 that it will “no longer invest in five Israeli banks.” Who Profits, as well as a number of other highly politicized NGOs, lobbied PGGM to divest from these Israeli banks as part of its economic warfare campaign against Israel.
  • Published a 2009 report alleging Norwegian Government Pension Fund investments with “corporations whose activities continuously support and maintain the Israeli occupation.” In the report, Elbit, which supplies unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), was described as “One of the main subcontractors for electronic detection systems in the separation fence and the seamline barrier for the Israeli Ministry of Defense.” Elbit’s role in preventing attacks against Israeli civilians was ignored.

Current and Former Activists

2015-2019 Funding to Who Profits (amounts in NIS)

2015-2017 figures based on NGO annual reports, 2018-2019 figures based on quarterly reports submitted to the Israeli Registrar for Non-Profits.

Donor20192018201720162015
Trocaire (Ireland)95,801142,366174,06085,06886,754
Fagforbundet (Norway)47,82344,06144,26252,315
Bread for the World(Germany)32,71428,751
Nova (Spain)5,70541,764
Kairos Canada(Private)9,660
ICCO (Netherlands)43,168392,282
Medico International(Germany)50,98446,11651,69848,840
Facing Finance E.V (Germany-Private)2,477
Avaaz Foundation6,913
Rockefeller Brothers Fund (Private)263,79194,965
DanChurchAid13,19913,839
Diakonia10,27619,118
EMHRF205,989
HEKS-EPER40,000233,032
Church of Sweden105,622210,505110,728
CCFD-Terre Solidaire (France)79,89340,017

Appendix 1

who profits bds letter

Appendix 2


All Articles about Who Profits