Time flies and it is up to you how you spend it — we've chosen to build awesome security technologies. Strategic Cyber Ventures just passed its five-year mark, and we're ready for five more!
There's a lot to be grateful for. So, join us for a trip down memory lane as we reflect on our journey.
"When we started SCV five years ago, we had one mission: find really cool security technology with awesome management teams, map them to known requirements, invest in them, and help them grow," explained CEO and Founder Hank Thomas. However, in our early days, that looked like dozens of weekly meetings, trying to sort through what was out there, often meeting with companies with no more than five slides to their name!
Once we narrowed down our criteria and developed a repeatable process, we were able to develop our own unique methodology and rhythm that works for us and our portfolio.
Thomas added, "I think now we really have a well-honed machine that allows us to focus on the things we're interested in, but more importantly the things we're good at, and not waste people's time. We can dedicate a good chunk of our time to helping our portfolio companies grow any way we can. It's an all hands-on deck approach."
Dave Coxe, CEO of SCV portfolio company ID Data Web, appreciates these focused efforts, noting that SCV's "cyber operations experience and contacts in the venture community have helped with messaging, positioning, and strategy as [ID Data Web] has continued to grow as a leader in the identity verification and fraud deterrence marketplace."
"SCV has supported us through many strategic decisions over the years," said Paul Battista, CEO of Polarity. "They committed early on that they are in it for the long game, and have held true to that commitment as we forged new pathways to bring an innovative product to market."
New hires, fresh strategies, and curiosity allow us to continuously expand our horizons. Chris Ahern, SCV Principal, has seen the company grow and transform over his three plus years. In addition to the attention we dedicate to our portfolio companies, Chris added that our public persona is flourishing more than ever before due to our consistent engagement on social media, through our blogs, and our monthly newsletter.
It's this presence that makes us feel like we're part of a community. When the question of "fondest memory" circulated around our network, answers consistently revolved around the events that brought us all together.
Here's what we had to say:
Hank Thomas: "My favorite early memory was the first RSA conference we attended as SCV. In the winter of 2016, I attended as an investor for the very first time, after having attended for years in very different roles. I knew immediately that I had made the right choice to form SCV. I knew we had a truly unique opportunity to make history, build a business, help secure the wild west of the internet and contribute to national security. I still feel that way today, nothing has changed except for some of our tactics, which are far more advanced five years later."
Chris Ahern: "It's hard to pick just one, but I've enjoyed all the successful events we've hosted. They are a lot of work but it's always rewarding to see people having a good time, learning something new, or meeting new and interesting people in the cybersecurity and investing ecosystem."
Abbie Ginis: "My favorite memory of SCV so far was helping run the DC Zero Day Con conference a couple falls ago. Having been relatively new to the company and industry, I felt planning a conference for half a year allowed me to be fully immersed and get connected with our great network."
Dave Coxe: "SCV events at RSA and Zero Day Con in NY or Washington, DC bring together global cyber operators, thought leaders, and venture investors to discuss pressing issues, current solutions and market trends in commercial and government markets. This community is a powerful network of competitors and partners that is unparalleled and inherently rewarding to all participants."
Paul Battista: "Given the current state of the world, it is easy to look back fondly on the many joint in-person events such as Zero-Day Con and networking at RSAC, BlackHat, and Gartner. Although Polarity does not have our own physical office, SCV has been very generous to share their premier office space with us many times for those ancient in-person customer and candidate meetings which we miss so much!"
So, what will next five years bring for Strategic Cyber Ventures? Chris predicts that "SCV could become a multi-strategy and multi-stage investment firm. We would be able to pivot and make investment decisions across a more diverse set of opportunities based on the underlying trends in the market."
Hank's thoughts aren't far behind. Open to investing in new spaces, he explained: "What I'm excited about for the future is taking what we've built and opening up to new opportunities, perhaps even outside of cybersecurity. That could include other forms of security, to include technology that's going to secure the next frontier in outer space or the future of our supply chains."
No matter what direction SCV takes, you best bet it'll be a groundbreaking one.
Here's to the next five years!
ABOUT STRATEGIC CYBER VENTURES
Cybersecurity is national security, and we're a D.C.-based venture capital firm on a mission to find cutting-edge startups that help us make an impact. We go beyond the check to help our founders win by leveraging our industry connections and experience as cybersecurity veterans to fuel their companies from inception to exit.