NewAlpha Asset Management’s French venture capital fund dedicated to Fintech companies has made it’s second investment in ITrust, allowing the cyber security software solutions specialist to raise EUR2 million.
Boosted by the growing confidence of users and regulatory authorities, the development of digital technology in financial services is accelerating with the proliferation of innovations introduced by Fintech start-ups. As such, cyber security has become one of the prerequisites for the development of these new financial services and, moreover, for the sustainability of all players in the financial industry: banks, insurance companies, and payment or electronic banking players.
Created in Toulouse in 2007, ITrust publishes cyber security software solutions and offers related services, positioning itself as the European leader in vulnerabilities monitoring with IKare, and in the detection of Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) and malicious behaviour through behavioural analysis with the Reveelium solution.
The company currently boasts 100 prestigious clients across various sectors: banking, insurance, defence and aeronautics, energy and public administration (with a ministry). By considerably improving the ability to detect cyber-attacks and by reducing the number of false alarms, the solutions provided by ITrust significantly increase the effectiveness of its clients’ security systems.
As part of the digital economy development section of the Investissements d’Avenir (Investments for the Future) programme, the French government in 2013 selected the Secured Virtual Cloud project proposed by a consortium managed by ITrust. In 2015, ITrust received the France Cybersecurity label and the Security Award in the “Smart and automatic detection systems” category. Lastly, Ubi I/O, a US acceleration program dedicated to French Tech startups, selected ITrust out of 300 start-ups to represent France.
Today, ITrust has 35 employees and aims for revenue of EUR35 million in 5 years, while planning to create some twenty highly qualified jobs by the end of 2017.
By contributing EUR1.5 million, NewAlpha is the main investor in this fund-raising operation, which also involves Crédit Agricole and Caisse d’Epargne, who have thereby confirmed their interest in helping to develop ITrust.
“Fintech users are requested to share a great deal of sensitive information regarding their assets, income and, more generally, their private lives. Protecting such data is the overarching goal underpinning the development of Fintech companies. The solutions offered by ITrust and the quality of its teams have convinced us of their ability to grow the company while meeting current cyber security challenges,” says Lior Derhy, Managing Director in charge of Private Equity at NewAlpha.
Jean-Nicolas Piotrowski, Chairman and founder of ITrust, adds: “The number of cyber-attacks and their sometimes devastating effects continue to grow. The great majority of companies are not sufficiently organised and equipped to address this issue. In our business, however, most of our competitors are American and Israeli. Our domestic roots mean we are well positioned to meet the requirements of Operators of Critical Infrastructures (OIV) whose activities are essential to the French economy. More broadly, that is why we are currently aiming for strong development in Europe.”
“Our vision of investment in Fintechs leads us to take a greater interest in new technologies able to boost the development of Fintechs and to create synergies with established players. From that perspective, ITrust is perfectly positioned,” says Antoine Rolland, Chairman of NewAlpha.
Invested in by institutional investors, including the Credit Mutuel Nord Europe, the fund managed by NewAlpha aims to build and promote a diverse portfolio of investments in innovative Fintech and Insurtech companies. It also aims to provide active monitoring of changes in financial services (innovative initiatives, new uses) and of technological changes affecting the banking, insurance and asset management industries.