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🌍 Cybersecurity Innovation Pulse #11: The Growing SASE Market, VC Funding Disparities, USSF Digital Bloodhound, Funding News and More!
Covering Apr. 8th - 16th
Welcome to the 11th issue of the Cybersecurity Market Pulse newsletter! I'm Darwin Salazar and this newsletter is your personal guide to the ever-evolving world of cybersecurity. Every week, I bring you the latest updates on product launches, groundbreaking innovations, strategic collaborations, funding news, earnings, and M&A activity. By subscribing, you'll receive all these valuable insights directly in your inbox, saving you time and helping you stay ahead of the curve. If you love what you read, don't hesitate to share it with a friend or colleague. So, grab a cup of your favorite beverage, and let’s dive into this week's issue. Enjoy!
This week was relatively light in terms of funding and M&A activity, but we anticipate a pick-up in the coming weeks as RSA is around the corner and we receive quarterly earnings reports from major tech and cybersecurity companies. In this issue, we'll cover the U.S. Army's revamped cybersecurity approach, the growing SASE market, and the latest funding news.
The Market Beat 🥁
SASE Market Poised for Significant Growth
According to a recent report by MarketsandMarkets, the Secure Access Service Edge (SASE) market is expected to grow from $1.9 billion in 2023 to $5.9 billion by 2028, growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 26.3%. SASE solutions, which combine networking and security functions in a single platform, are gaining traction as organizations increasingly adopt cloud services and remote work. Today’s top SASE vendors include major security players such as ZScaler, Palo Alto Networks, NetSkope, Fortinet, Cisco, and CloudFlare.
Addressing Funding Disparities: A New Hope for Diverse Founders
Recent reports have indicated a concerning decline in venture capital funding across the globe but even more so for Latin American startups, women-led ventures, and underrepresented founders across the board. Crunchbase data reveals an 84% drop in funding for Q1 ‘23 compared to the previous year for Latin American companies. Similarly, a TechCrunch report highlights that women-founded companies are receiving an even smaller share of the total investment dollars compared to previous quarters. Companies with all female-founding teams only raised $800 million of the estimated $37 billion invested in U.S. startups in Q1 ‘23. That makes up for about 2.1% of total funding, a 53% decline compared to the same quarter last year.
In light of these funding disparities, MassMutual's new $100 million MM Catalyst Fund presents a potential game-changer. This fund is specifically designed to support diverse founders and diverse-led businesses, including those led by women and entrepreneurs from underrepresented communities. The fund’s check will range from $500K to $5 million and will focus on companies anywhere between Seed and Series B.
By addressing the existing funding gaps and providing resources to these ventures, MassMutual aims to foster a more inclusive and equitable startup ecosystem that benefits from the innovation and perspectives of diverse entrepreneurs.
Adapting to Modern Warfare: The Army's Cybersecurity Evolution
The U.S. Army is revamping its cybersecurity approach to adapt to the rapidly evolving threat landscape and bolster security during critical missions. As cyber warfare becomes more sophisticated and we enter a new technological age, the Army is adopting a zero-trust security model, focusing on AI-driven threat detection, investing in advanced training for its personnel, and developing “advanced communication” methods. In an effort to accelerate innovation and enhance collaboration, the Army is also partnering with the private sector and academia. For a deep dive into these efforts, check out this Tripwire post.
Fivecast, an Open-source intelligence (OSINT) company, secured $20 million in Series A funding led by Ten Eleven Ventures and joined by Main Sequence, Industrial Research Organization’s (CSIRO) innovation fund, the Commonwealth Scientific, and the South Australian Venture Capital Fund. The platform leverages AI/ML to analyze data from various sources to provide OSINT and risk analytics for defense, law enforcement, and private organizations.
Cerbos, an authorization platform provider, raised $7.5 million in a funding round led by Omers Ventures. The company aims to help organizations manage fine-grained access control across applications by separating the authorization logic from the app’s core code.
Cyfirma, a security company specializing in threat intel and attack surface management, raised $6 million in a pre-series B round led by OurCrowd and joined by Larsen & Toubro’s Innovation Fund. The platform provides organizations with insights into their external attack surface paired with AI/ML-driven threat intelligence to help prepare and defend against attacks.
U.S. Space Force (USSF)
The U.S. Space Force is set to award a contract for its "Digital Bloodhound" project, aimed at enhancing the cyber defense capabilities of its space systems. The initiative will look to leverage AI and automation to detect, track, and defend against cyber threats to U.S. space ground facilities.
And that’s a wrap for April 8th - 16th! If you have any feedback or would like to chat, please share it in the comments or reach out to me on LinkedIn, I’m always looking to improve this publication. See you in a couple of days for the next Cybersecurity Innovation Pulse issue!
The opinions expressed in this newsletter are solely my own and do not reflect the views or opinions of my employer. The information provided in this newsletter is for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as investment advice or a recommendation to buy or sell any securities. Always consult with a qualified financial advisor before making any investment decisions.
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