Dickenstein, Abraham

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DICKENSTEIN, ABRAHAM (1902–1977), Israeli banker and industrialist. Dickenstein was born in Wishniewa, Poland, and immigrated to Ereẓ Israel in 1921.

From 1921 to 1924 he worked as an agricultural laborer but entered the world of finance in 1925, when he founded the Audit Union of Credit Co-operatives and the Audit Union of Consumers Co-operatives, and in 1927 the Transport Co-operatives. From 1924 to 1935 he was assistant director of Bank Hapoalim of which he later became managing director and visited the United States in 1936 to sell shares of the bank. Encouraged by his success, he conceived the idea of establishing an American financial corporation for the purpose of mobilizing finance and investment resources among United States Jewry for the purpose of expanding the industrial and agricultural economy of Israel. The outcome was the founding of ampal, the American Israel Corporation, in 1941, which, with a balance sheet of $400 million, was in the 1970s one of the most important financial organizations in Israel.

He also served as chairman of the board of the Israeli American Independent Development Bank.

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Dickenstein, Abraham

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