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As we head towards the start of a new year, and begin our planning cycles, we do this with renewed confidence in our leadership in cryptographic solutions. I am pleased to announce that we have just closed a Series B investment led by Evolution Equity Partners (EEP), joining existing investors Innovation Endeavors, Goldman Sachs, Citi and BlueRed Partners. Additionally, JR Smith from EEP is joining our board, and brings years of operating expertise from his many years of experience of growing cyber security startups. This $20 million round brings the total amount of money raised by Unbound thus far to over $40 million. This is undoubtedly a milestone for the company that I co-founded with Prof. Nigel Smart and Guy Peer just 5 years ago. This investment further bolsters our continuous commitment to innovation and will provide us with the resources to execute on the next phase of Unbound’s growth and development.
It was a unique experience to raise at this time, with no ability to meet physically and relying on the new-normal of virtualization. This had some advantages – there was one day where I (virtually) began my morning in London, headed to New York in the early afternoon, stopped by San Francisco in the evening, and then returned back to New York at night, all from my desktop. This could never have been accomplished in a single day if they were physical meetings. Having said that, although I have found that it is possible to build a good working relationship virtually, even from scratch, I certainly believe in the power of physical presence and look forward to the time that I can physically shake hands with our newest board member JR. Fortunately for Unbound, we were able to close the round very quickly, despite the unique global circumstances that are causing most fundraising cycles to be much longer. This is a tribute to what Unbound has built so far, the strength of our story, and our growth potential.
This round is a classic Series B in the sense that Unbound has a proven solution with strong product-market fit, but we are yet to scale. We have some of the largest banks and enterprises in NA and the world as our customers, and our message resonates strongly with the market (more on that below). The aim of this round is therefore to fuel rapid growth and enable Unbound to capture a larger share of the market. We have an extremely strong go-to-market management team and have just added a new VP Global Sales, Wayne Harris, who brings decades of experience in sales leadership. Our entire go-to-market management team is located in the New York Area and this is no coincidence. While we will continue to invest in our global presence and sell globally, we have a strong focus on North America. This focus will enable us to penetrate the market and create a domino effect, while continuing our global expansion from a position of strength. The Series B investment will help fund this growth, both in personnel (with a 30% increase in headcount over the next 6 months) and in resources.
Unbound has strong scientific and academic roots. So strong in fact, that it enabled us to win a prestigious Horizon 2020 Phase 2 SME Instrument Phase 2 Grant of over $2 million in 2015. The grant which was in the ICT category (Information and Communications Technology), their most competitive category, attracted the highest number of applicants and focused on Open Disruptive Innovation. Securing this grant was one of the milestones that helped us develop our core technology, that is based on decades of research in cryptography and in particular in secure multiparty computation (MPC). Add to this the 17 granted patents we’ve secured over the last 5 years and you can see part of what makes Unbound’s solution so unique.
Our focus as a company then and now is on how to combine deep cryptographic scientific knowledge with outstanding engineering expertise to deliver products to our customers that solve some of their most acute problems. The key protection and key management industries are well entrenched in enterprise accounts but offer solutions that are much more suited to the computing environments of the previous century. Unbound’s powerful cryptographic services platform is all encompassing and empowered to meet the needs of any enterprise, in an advanced package that takes modern computing needs into account. With our platform there is no need to rewrite applications for different environments, and key management systems are enabled to manage all types of keys – whether they be in software (utilizing MPC), in cloud KMSs, or in physical HSMs. All of an organization’s cryptographic needs – whether they be for information assets, authentication and identity, or for digital assets – are provided for by a single unified solution. With Unbound, cryptographic services are available quickly so that business is accelerated rather than hindered. Finally, Unbound provides enterprises with the ability to set company-wide policies from one place, view comprehensive audits and ensure compliance (wherever keys may reside). Unbound’s solutions are enterprise enabled for scale and seamless integration, while delivering the high level of security that organizations are looking for today. This Series B investment provides us the resources to further develop our product, to expand our go-to-market efforts, significantly grow the number of customers that we have and ensure increased revenue.ש
Our vision at Unbound is to be the cryptographic platform of choice for enterprises globally, and to empower them to confidently secure and manage all their critical business transactions, information, and digital assets – anywhere and at any time. The closing of this Series B takes us a big step closer to realizing this vision.
I would like to conclude with an expression of gratitude to our investors for their ongoing support, to our customers for appreciating the value that our solutions provide, and to the entire Unbound team for enabling everything that we do.