Israeli cybersecurity company Team8 has reported a successful Series B funding round, with a variety of investors contributing a combined total of $23m. It builds on the company’s successful Series A funding round from 2015, when they raised $18m, largely thanks to their unique make-up of part think-tank, part venture capitalist and part start-up incubator.
In the company's first funding round, a number of large names were brought on board, with investors such as Bessemer Venture Partners (BVP), Cisco Investments, Marker LLC, Innovation Endeavors and Alcatel-Lucent. Team8 has gained even more notable names in their latest funding option, with Temasek, Nokia, Mitsui, AT&T and Accenture participating. It means that the company now has a broad variety of funding partners, with Mitsui and Temasek giving new presences in Japan and Singapore, respectively.
Meanwhile, AT&T brings important insight into big network security requirements to the table, whilst the investment by Accenture offers Team8 the chance to access Fortune 500 organisations. It’s also reported that Team8 will collaborate with Nokia to help develop security options for large-scale telecommunications firms.
Team8’s development of new companies takes an unusual approach. After research has been conducted, the firm identifies a broad sector and then works with security experts to create their “cyber-thesis.” As part of the process, the firm identifies a clear issue before moving on to work out how these problems can be solved. The resulting ideas are then fully developed into a company. The first of these companies, Illusive Networks, was launched in the past 12 months. Illusive Networks will be followed by another two firms in 2016, one of which will tackle the issue of industrial network security.
In the current era, Series B funding for start-ups can run into difficulties. However, Team8 Chief Executive Nadav Zafrir said that they saw oversubscription of 300 per cent. As a result, much of the funding was left on the table, with the firm only choosing businesses they believe can help meet the company’s goals. “The current atmosphere separates men from boys. Companies with bolder ideas, that are more aware of ROI and that get better go-to market strategy will be in a better position. So many companies are going after same markets and talents. The stronger companies in the next months and years will stand out,” Zafrir said.
He added that one of the advantages Team8 has is that new companies to the group allow access to further organisations, thereby growing their potential network. Already employing 130 people, the firm expects this to double in 2016 as they grow their Asian and US presence.
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