Liz Mohn and Chemi Peres are standing behind a table at the award ceremony for the Reinhard Mohn Prize 2020 and are looking into the camera. Chemi Peres is holding the trophy for the Reinhard Mohn Prize.

Reinhard Mohn Prize awarded to Nechemia Peres

 Our foundation today awarded its Reinhard Mohn Prize to the chairman of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, Nechemia ("Chemi") Peres. The topic of the 2020 Reinhard Mohn Prize is "Fostering Innovation. Unlocking Potential." Due to the pandemic, it was not possible to award the prize until this year. We are using the prize to honor the entrepreneur for his outstanding commitment to promoting innovation that serves both business and society. Peres accepted the prize, which comes with an award of €200,000, from Liz Mohn, our worldwide representative, in Gütersloh.

contact persons

Foto Daniel Schraad-Tischler
Dr. Daniel Schraad-Tischler
Foto Jan C. Breitinger
Dr. Jan C. Breitinger
Senior Project Manager


The ceremony to award the prize to Nechemia ("Chemi") Peres, chairman of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, was held on Thursday, October 28, 2021, at our foundation in Gütersloh. The ceremony was also streamed live. 

Liz Mohn, honorary member of the our foundation's Board of Trustees and its worldwide representative, paid tribute to Peres, saying, "Chemi Peres's outstanding commitment to promoting innovation and progress which serves people in business and society equally, regardless of their background, makes him a role model and a remarkable individual. Through his work, his considerable diplomatic skills and his empathy, he is continuing the legacy of his father, Shimon Peres, who founded the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation in 1996 to encourage innovation and economic progress in Israel. The center also paves the way for shared-living among all of Israel's citizens and lasting peace between Israel and its neighbors in the Middle East. His efforts on behalf of society make Chemi Peres a worthy recipient of the Reinhard Mohn Prize."

I firmly believe that innovation and creative entrepreneurship are the key to actively influencing our destiny and working together not only to meet the needs of our own society, but also to create a better world for all people.

Nechemia "Chemi" Peres, winner of the Reinhard Mohn Prize 2020

In her remarks during the award ceremony, Brigitte Mohn, member of our Executive Board, said, "Chemi Peres shows how innovation can help people experience more prosperity, both individually and on a societal level, and how it can contribute to the peaceful development of societies. As a person and an entrepreneur, he is a role model for all those who act on the belief that business also bears a responsibility to society."

As the announcement for the prize states, as chairman of the Peres Center for Peace and Innovation, Chemi Peres, son of former Israeli President Shimon Peres and a successful entrepreneur, has shown considerable dedication to promoting innovation and economic progress in Israel. The 63-year-old thus represents Israel as the "innovation and start-up nation." At the same time, Peres has played a leading role in shaping the discourse on innovation and its positive potentials. With great foresight and an extensive international network of partners, and above all through the work done by the Peres Center, he has been fostering innovation for many years in key areas such as entrepreneurship, health, business, the environment and sports.

Important driver for Israel as an innovation hub

Chemi Peres has also paved the way for numerous young enterprises which he has championed, supported and helped achieve success even beyond Israel's borders. His fundamentally humane belief – that innovation promotes peace while contributing to social development – and the actions resulting from it have had an impact far beyond the Middle East.

In 2018, Peres also opened the Israeli Innovation Center, the first and largest of its kind, to considerable international acclaim. The following year, the center welcomed more than 75,000 guests from around the world – including government representatives, business leaders, start-up founders and members of the public – who wanted to learn from the Israeli innovation model.