A jury of venture capitalists elected Vaultree and Angoka as two of the most promising companies in the European security industry. Both companies develop encryption technology.

The companies participated in the Cyber Investor Days, a pitch event for European startups and scaleups. The European Cyber Security Organization (ECSO) organizes the event six times a year. Participants pitch their products to a group of venture capitalists.

The Cyber Investor Days are one of the ways in which the European Union supports scaleups and startups. Each edition involves a member state. This time, Ireland took on the task. Thirteen fast-growing security companies travelled to Dublin and told their story. The previous edition took place in Helsinki.

Cyber Investor Days Dublin

The event was hosted by Enterprise Ireland and Cyber Ireland, two national agencies for entrepreneurs. 24 European venture capitalists attended. Companies that impress can secure a follow-up. That opens the door for funding, which most security companies require to grow.

Techzine was on location. We talked to the participants, including Oblivious, an Irish company with a rare product. The technology allows organizations to share data without exposing data. Germany’s Crashtest Security discussed a DAST solution (dynamic application security testing) for securing web apps and APIs. CallDefender’s technology prevents spoofing and VoIP fraud.

A competition without winners

Each edition has a jury. The jury in Dublin primarily consisted of venture capitalists. They voted on the pitch that appealed to them the most.

Most votes went out to Angoka and Vaultree, two Ireland-based security companies. Yet, according to the organizers, nobody wins or loses. All participants benefit. Each company gains an audience with some of the most influential European venture capitalists. Money is an engine. Most success stories start with capital. Not every participant receives an investment, but chances always increase.

The two most popular participants of each edition advance to the next round. ECSO will organize a final in The Hague later this year. Angoka and Vaultree secured a podium.

Angoka and Vaultree

Angoka’s technology encrypts IoT devices. The product is quantum-proof. An important factor, as security experts fear that existing encryption algorithms won’t be able to cope with quantum computing. Angoka’s encryption is truly unreadable — now, and probably in ten years’ time too.

Vaultree focuses on encryption as well. The technology secures data on clients. A major difference from the current offering, which largely consists of server-side encryption. Server-side encryption is better than nothing, but far from optimal. When moving data between a server and client, data remains exposed. Vaultree ensures that data remains unreadable in transit.

Venture capitalists love encryption

Angoka and Vaultree’s ‘win’ is a lesson. European venture capitalists love encryption. Understandable, as unreadable data is worthless to cybercriminals. The right encryption disarms attacks.

The sales strategies of Angoka and Vaultree were favoured. During the event, several venture capitalists emphasized the importance of international sales. European security companies can rarely scale in a single country. The market just isn’t big enough. Both Angoka and Vaultree look to Europe and the United States. Companies that cross borders attract attention.