Application security startup Snyk just raised $200 million at a $2.6 billion valuation for software that has a ‘quasi-monopoly’ on helping developers use open-source code securely


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Application security startup Snyk raises $200 million to reach a $2.6 billion valuation with an opportunity to dominate that investors love

Application security startup Snyk just raised $200 million at a $2.6 billion valuation ___ 

Boston security startup Snyk (pronounced sneak) just raised a $200 million Series D funding round at a $2.6 billion valuation – and it wasn’t even soliciting funding.

“We were never looking,” CEO Peter McKay told Business Insider. “We said no at times.” 

Not many tech startups have the problem of investors pushing unwanted money at them, but Snyk faces what investors say is an enviable opportunity: The startup dominates its area of application development security. 

Snyk, which has raised $450 million total, finds and fixes security vulnerabilities in open-source computer code. This gives developers using these publicly available programs — whether in consumer-facing apps or corporate applications — the reassurance that they will not be exploited later.

Investor firm Addition, which led the round, said in a statement that Snyk “continues to seize this large market opportunity.”

Another investor called Snyk a “quasi-monopoly” in helping developers build secure apps. “Every company needs it,” said Canaan Partners’ Joydeep Bhattacharyya of Canaan Partner. “It’s just going to balloon up.”

McKay, former CEO of Veeam software and a former VMWare exec, is capitalizing on the opportunity to dominate this area of cybersecurity with a businesslike efficiency sometimes missing from tech startups.   

Snyk works with a “freemium” model, that lets users “try it before you buy it.” When they pay they get longterm access to Snyk’s data about known vulnerabilities in open source code, tools to find and fix issues, and access to its community of developers.

Google, Salesforce, and the French telecom Orange are among Snyk’s customers, and it partners with Amazon Web Services, GitHub, and Atlassian on integrations to serve third-party customers. 

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The companies name is a play on “sneak,” because the company “sneaks data out” of applications to track security vulnerabilities, as well as the acronym SNYK for “so now you know.” 

Snyk has enthusiasm for efficiency 

McKay, who is silver-haired with a bright smile and precise manner, enthusiastically discussed a recent video conference meeting at which 100 Snyk employees – around a third of the company – filled up the entire capacity of the meeting before it started. If you were even a minute late, you didn’t get in. 

That kind of punctuality is not always the norm at tech startups, and the subject of the meeting was also unusual. “It was how to run an effective meeting,” McKay says. “It was fantastic.” 

If this sounds more like a business school or a big corporation than a startup that caters to the quirky world of application developers, it’s because Snyk does not take its current opportunities for granted. 

“Everybody sees a tremendous opportunity in front of us, obviously we do, and they want to see us accelerate toward that,” says McKay. 

That has meant hiring aggressively at a time when some companies laid workers off. “When other people were kind of shedding jobs, we saw this as an opportunity to go grab some …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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