Remember when Unicorn companies (valued north of $1B) were a thing of rarity? Since the start of the pandemic, and continuing into 2021, Israeli startups have tapped into the Unicorn recipe, producing a new one on an almost weekly basis.
Recently, Israeli cloud-security startup Orca Security closed a massive $210 million Series C funding round, led by Alphabet’s venture arm, CapitalG, and Redpoint Ventures. Others participating in the round included ICONIQ Growth, GGV Capital, Silicon Valley CISO, and 50 data security executives, who invested privately in the company. The round was done at a $1.2 billion valuation, graduating the Israeli company into the quite crowded Israeli Unicorn club.
Fundraising on turbo
The recent mega round follows a tight fundraising schedule: Just this past December, the company landed $55 million, and founder Avi Shua told Geektime that the round “didn’t come from a place of stress, but rather the opposite - from a place of opportunity.” This came following a May 2020 Series A, totaling $20 million, and a 2019 $6.5 million Seed round, which brings the total to around $300 million to date.
With the global crisis threatening in 2020, Orca seized the year to achieve massive year-over-year growth, while onboarding new customers, such as Robinhood, Unity, Lemonade, and many others. The company employs a team of 100 people, and noted that the funds will be utilized to expand operations into new markets.
Exposing the invisible
As more and more enterprises transition infrastructure to various cloud platforms, traditional data security tools have become irrelevant, unable to provide complete visibility into the cloud infrastructure, opening up the network to different threats.
Orca’s agentless system is based on technology called SideScanning, and is seamlessly implemented into each server, which according to Orca, enables deep insight and visibility into the organizational network. The company noted that this method helps expose vulnerabilities, weak passwords, malware, in addition to finding hacked servers and configuration issues.
The company states that the system can reveal all these problems within minutes by using special tech that can read the server’s virtual disk via cloud infrastructure, and crossing it with data pulled directly from cloud provider APIs. Orca’s system prioritizes and filters thousands of security alerts to reveal critical vulnerabilities, while providing actionable insight towards remediation.
In a chat with Geektime, co-founder and CPO Gil Geron said that the company wants to become the “world’s leading cloud security company”, defining the funding round as a necessary tool to achieve this goal. Geron also added that the company possibly being acquired is not “on the docket”, in addition to any other near funding events. He did note that when looking down the road, but not too far, the goal is “obviously to go public”.
Geron explained that the cloud market is experiencing immense growth, leading organizations to spend over $100 billion on cloud infrastructure. An impressive number which is speculated to grow to a trillion dollars over the next 7 years. According to Geron, from that, around 5%-6% totaling $5.6 billion is allocated to security, and that number is expected to continue to balloon. “That’s what we and the investors see, and regarding the $1.2 billion valuation, it’s just the beginning,” said Geron.
Orca Security was founded in 2019 by 8 former Check Point executives, including CEO Avi Shua and CPO Gil Geron.